previews\ Jul 15, 2007 at 8:00 pm

Luminous Arc - NDS - Preview

E3 2007 Preview

In a war against a deity, dragons and witches fought for power. It is believed that, in this vicious war one thousand years ago, the deity was injured and has since taken a long slumber. The dragons and witches must’ve been severely injured during the battle as well, because they too have disappeared. 

In the present days of Luminous Arc – an exclusive strategy/RPG for the DS – the deity is reportedly due to awaken. It appears that one thousand years of sleeping is all he needed to recover. Unfortunately, with him returning to the land, the dragons and witches will also resurface, hoping to eliminate the deity once and for all. 

As the player, you will not control either side. Instead, you will be in charge of a group of mages and fighters known as the Garden Children. These forceful warriors have been trained to protect the world from the witches from a very young age. Now, with the world in grave danger, they must rise to action and destroy the evil forces that threaten their survival. 

Luminous Arc’s combat is driven by the familiar world of strategy/RPGs (grid movement, isometric view, etc.) but offers something unique in the attacks called Flash Drive. These moves can only be executed with Flash Points (FP), which are earned by fighting, which increases your party’s level. 

Luminous Arc Nintendo DS screenshots

Flash Drive skills may inflict damage, cause status ailments (to your enemies), raise attack power, lower an enemy’s guard, etc. As powerful and varied as these moves are, the game does not live on them. If a player doesn’t have enough FP to proceed, he or she can rely on the standard skills and attacks. 

Since Luminous Arc is a menu-based fighter, you can expect to see a lot of text. The main battle screen offers the following options: move, action, wait, status, and cancel. Choose action to bring up the attack, skill, Flash Drive, and item options. As you’re likely aware, the “wait” function is best reserved for when you can longer make a move that would help you in battle, or when the only move possible could hurt your progress. 

Although the battles are traditional in their text and menu interface, the story development process comes right out of the new generation. Most of the story sequences will feature character voice-overs, just like you’d find on Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3. This is quite an accomplishment for the DS. Even great games like Pokemon haven’t attempted to feature full voice acting. None of the voices had been implemented in the demo, but I’m eager to hear what each character will sound like. 

Last but not least, the game will feature a Wi-Fi multiplayer component and a weapon creation system. Details on both elements are scarce, but you can bet GameZone will bring you additional details the second they’re released.


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