the Xbox has been duly noted for its superior graphics and
generally excellent selection of games, there has always been
one major flaw dampening its success: namely, a distinctly
poor showing in the RPG department. Till now, most RPG fans
have had to settle for the comparatively rather inferior
graphics of the PS2 as their system of choice. But that long
drought may be coming to an end at last, if Microsoft has
anything to say about it. Along with UK based Climax, Gates
and company will be looking to change gamers’ opinions with
the release of Sudeki early next year.
plot: Hikaria and Kuria are two worlds at war. For the Japanese
challenged, Hikaria is the world of light and brightness, while
Kuria is a world of darkness. Your party consists of four Hikarians
brought together by their Empress Lusica, who wants you to assist in
the creation of a machine that may very well give the Hikarians
victory over Kuria. To do this, you must travel to various
locations throughout your world. During your travels, the members
of your party will discover some disturbing things about Hikaria
that are generally hidden from the public eye…shades of the real
world! A refreshingly timely gaming paradigm, contrasting blind
“patriotism” with the sordid reality behind the flag waving…
four-member team will consist of Tal (a “powerful warrior”), Ailish
(a princess and a sorceress), Elco (a scientist who is
also a gunslinger – are these people all-purpose or what?),
and a shape-changing huntress named Buki. The group will find out (like
most of us, once we get out in the real world) that when it
comes down to it, the only thing they can rely on is themselves, as
they watch their little ivory towers torn apart by the harsh
realities of deceit and betrayal.
Sudeki will be in real time, with a shift to slow motion when
accessing menus or casting spells during battle. While you only
have the option of controlling one character during battles, you can
switch characters at will with a press of a button. Otherwise, the
computer takes charge of the rest of your party, which you can
preset to act in given patterns based on their particular skills.
Certain spells or items can be mapped to a particular button for
quick access during battle.
There are a
plethora of side quests, mini games, and secrets to discover in
Sudeki. Just to make sure you don’t miss the whole point, you
also get an alternative ending from the “bad guy’s” point of view.
With a (apparently, since we haven’t played the game through
yet…) demonstrable open-mindedness and devil’s advocacy to that
level, it’s a safe bet which side of the sociopolitical fence Climax
appears to be shaping up quite nicely. The character models draw
heavily on anime-style character design and the environments appear
to have a great amount of detail to them. Climax seems to have
fully utilized the powerful resources of Xbox technology in its
lighting, particle, and reflection, all of which combine to create a
very nice looking game.
is expected for an early 2004 release on the Xbox.