The Ban­ner Saga

GENRE TAC­TI­CAL RPG DE­VEL­OPER STOIC PUB­LISHER VER­SUS EVIL PLAT­FORM PC

HWM (Malaysia) - - REVIEWS - WORDS BRYAN CHAN

An Epic Saga... So Far.

Mul­ti­ple choice ques­tions were a bane for many a stu­dent. With an­swers that seem cor­rect in one way or an­other, the choice of se­lect­ing the cor­rect an­swer was of­ten left to chance. That ex­pe­ri­ence is once again re­vis­ited in the beau­ti­fully crafted The Ban­ner Saga.

The first episode in a planned tril­ogy, The Ban­ner Saga is an in­tri­cately wo­ven tale of ad­ven­ture, sac­ri­fice, ca­ma­raderie, and most im­por­tantly, con­se­quences. It’s a game where ev­ery choice you make af­fects the sto­ry­line at one point or an­other. The de­ci­sions are sub­tle, yet weigh heav­ily on your con­science.

With myth­i­cal Nordic el­e­ments tak­ing cen­ter stage, The Ban­ner Saga does away with the com­mon fan­tasy races such as Elves, Dwarves, and Orcs. In­stead, you are in­tro­duced to the Varl, a race of pow­er­ful gi­ants, your aver­age Hu­man, and the Dredge – who are the main an­tag­o­nists in this game. Speak­ing of char­ac­ters and set­ting, both are in­cred­i­ble works of art. A large ma­jor­ity of as­sets are hand­drawn, with in­spi­ra­tion from Eyvind Earle, the artist be­hind the unique back­ground il­lus­tra­tion from the 1959 Dis­ney film, Sleep­ing Beauty.

A Lit­tle Bit of Masochism Needed

In ad­di­tion to mak­ing dif­fi­cult choices, The Ban­ner Saga forces you to truly strate­gize care­fully when in com­bat. You’ll have to de­cide be­tween chip­ping away Ar­mor or dam­ag­ing the Strength of your op­po­nents. Strength and Health are one and the same in this game – the more Strength you have, the more dam­age you’ll do, and vice versa. Char­ac­ters that lose all Strength will be knocked out. Of course, there are unique skills and items that can help turn the tide of bat­tle, if used ap­pro­pri­ately.

In a nut­shell, The Ban­ner Saga is great game that fea­tures a deep and re­ward­ing com­bat sys­tem, which is fun and ag­gra­vat­ing at the same time. It’s also a re­fresh­ing take on the fan­tasy genre.

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