Sadly this isn’t about Dark Dawn. I know I’m getting it for Christmas (because I’m far too curious and sneaky for my own good), but I haven’t actually had a chance to actually sit down with the game in a capacity other than through an emulator, which… isn’t as glamorous as it sounds. No, this is about the series in general, which by many is the best RPG on the Game Boy Advance. And it’s true, in some ways. The sixth generation of consoles wasn’t kind to Nintendo in the RPG department – the GameCube had gems like Baten Kaitos, Tales of Symphonia, Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door, and Skies of Arcadia: Legends, but really that was about it. The GBA had Pokémon, the Final Fantasy ports, and… well, Golden Sun (there’s probably a couple random other games I’m forgetting, but none of them were really that memorable if I don’t have them; screw Chain of Memories). Given that Pokémon and Final Fantasy were already established, there wasn’t really any new IPs for Nintendo (save Baten Kaitos and Golden Sun).
Thus steps in Camelot in 2001. Having been known more for Shining Force than anything else, I really don’t know if anyone expected anything of the little RPGs. Me personally, when the first game came out, I paid it little heed, instead being enamoured with Pokémon Crystal (I could finally play as a girl!). There was this one guy at school (in band, of course) who would always be talking about the game to me. And when The Lost Age came out, the cycle continued – I was interested in the 3rd generation of Pokémon and the guy was raving about The Lost Age. Most of the time, I’d just smile and nod, but eventually I caved and bought the original Golden Sun. Man, was I missing out. I thoroughly enjoyed the first game (getting all the Djinn) and frantically searched around for copies of the second one once I had finished it. Of course, this was almost five years after the first game had come out, so everything was old news. But even still, even with the DS out there with its new Pokémon and Final Fantasy (along with a couple other worthwhile ports and some new IPs), the Golden Sun games held their own, having amazing graphics for the GBA and having gameplay that rivaled console cousins.
When word finally got out that they were actually making a DS sequel to the games, well… needless to say I wet myself a little. I’m anxiously anticipating actually popping the card into my DS and playing it for real. Though I’ll also have three other RPGs to contend with it on my little pink system – Dragon Quest IV and Dragon Quest IX, along with Tales of Innocence. Let’s not forget my ever growing 360 backlog, not to mention the additions of Fallout 3 and Mass Effect 2 when I finally get them.
Apologies for taking so long to get this entry out. I’ve been having a pretty bleh time of things, what with uni and all.