I Am Setsuna Review

The game everyone calls Chrono Trigger 2 fails to live up to the game it borrowed so much from. Here’s my review for I Am Setsuna.

Comparing a JRPG to Chrono Trigger is unfair in my opinion. Not many JRPGs can live up to that title. It’s one of the best JRPGs ever made and expecting I Am Setsuna to be as good ridiculous.

The Great: 

Graphics:

setsuna-2016-09-10-00-15-34-92

I Am Setsuna is a beautiful game. For some reason most developers have a hard time getting snow in their games right, but since everything in this game is covered in it I’m glad these devs managed to get it right.

The character models look good along with everything else in the game.

The Good:

Gameplay:

If you’ve ever played Chrono Trigger you’ll know how to play I am Setsuna. They’re identical and the gameplay in this game is actually really good in my opinion, but I never fought anything interesting. The monster designs are terrible and since this game is so easy I never really got to experiment with different moves because I knew that my first attack could kill everything with a single hit or two outside of bosses.

The way you traverse the world map is the exact same way you did in classic JRPGs like Final Fantasy. I think the movements on the map are way too slow and should be sped up a little to make travelling to different locations less boring.

The Bad:

Story:

I really wanted to like this game. It started off really interesting, but it went downhill from there. The first time I met Setsuna was the best moment in the game. I really like her character, but everyone else lacked depth. I couldn’t connect to them even though I wanted to. The written dialogue is mediocre at best and even though we’re supposed to feel for these characters in this game I honestly didn’t care what happened to anyone.

Sounds:

setsuna-2016-09-10-00-25-18-14

Everything from the soundtrack to the basic attack sounds is average. It’s nothing we haven’t heard before in countless other JRPGs. The soundtrack started off really nice, but I was ready to rip my own head off after an hour of playing because of the nonstop piano music. Pianos are nice, but the soundtrack never changed and that really affected my playthrough. Having a variety of music playing the background makes games better. Having nonstop “depressing” music playing while I play a game is not entertaining.

Boss Fights:

Boss fights in this game play out like every other JRPG in existence. They’re always overpowered and can attack you multiple times before you attack them once. Well… they can before you get the haste spell anyway. None of them were enjoyable and even though they hit harder than your average enemy they were still just as easy to take down.

It’s Really Short For $40

When I buy a $40 game I usually get a good 50+ hours out of it. I Am Setsuna is about 20 hours long. Less than that if you don’t bother with the sidequest. This game should have been $20 at most.

I did not pay $40 for I Am Setsuna.

PC Port:

setsuna-2016-09-10-00-18-12-51

I Am Setsuna acts more like a app that you open in the Windows 10 store than a actual game. Pressing the esc key brings up the quit menu and there is no mouse support at all which is unacceptable in a PC game. Navigating the menus are a pain in the ass because I don’t like using the J, and K buttons to accept and cancel. A simple click of the mouse would make this game a lot more enjoyable to play.

The Verdict:

I Am Setsuna started off with a lot of potential, but the further I got into the game the worst my experience became. The gameplay is nice, but that’s not enough for me to recommend this game to anyone. There are better games out there to spend $40 dollars on. There are better games worth half the price as this one.

50

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Author: Drakulus

I'm a hardcore gamer that enjoys every type of genre there is. I'm also a father of four kids, two girls and two boys, and love to write about whatever pops into my head.

12 thoughts on “I Am Setsuna Review”

  1. Yeah I’m glad I got this one on sale as the full price is steep for what you get. That being said, I had a good experience with this game. Shorter games are more manageable for me these days and as a pianist I loved that soundtrack. I will agree though that measuring it against Chrono Trigger is unfair and ridiculous. Inspired by or loosely influenced by CT is probably better marketing.

    1. I’m glad you enjoyed it :).

      I have no desire to play through this game ever again. When I get a Switch I’m willing to wait for better JRPGs to get to the console. I’m really looking forward to those Dragon Quest games.

  2. Such a shame! I was looking forward to this game, but ended up never getting it because of what I was hearing. It had so much potential, and the people worked on it seemed to have the right idea in mind. I know it’s expensive and short, but I might still try it out for a much lower price at least to try out the gameplay. Great review!

    1. Thanks!

      $40 is way too steep a price to pay for this game in my opinion. Obviously some people will disagree with me on that, but I thought it would be better than what it was and left incredibly disappointed in it. If you can find it for around $20 I recommend getting it then.

  3. I bought this on PS4, but I don’t think I will ever finish it. The characters and story are so dull/generic. Wish the gameplay could make up for its weaknesses, but alas Chrono Trigger never clicked with me.

    1. The story/characters are very dull. It was a big missed opportunity. I loved Chrono Trigger when it first released, but haven’t played it in years. I have no idea if I’ll still enjoy it or not :].

  4. I’ve yet to finish this, but I actually enjoy the depressing piano OST since it fits the theme of the game as a whole. I paid the full $40 and so far I have no regrets, but we’ll see how I feel once I manage to put it away for good.

    Solid review, dude. Shame you didn’t enjoy it more.

    1. Thanks!

      I think I would have enjoyed it more on console. Most of my negatives are from the PC port itself. I could easily bump it up a point on console, but there’s no way I can see myself dropping $40 on a 20 hour game.

      1. Sometimes I can overlook the dollar-to-time spent ratio. I was fine spending $60 on Bioshock and Infinite at launch, which were roughly 6-7 hour games, while I’ve put over 100 hours in to Minecraft at $20. As long as I finish feeling satisfied, the dollars spent are secondary. But I’m far more hesitant to spend more than $20 on something I’m unfamiliar with, whether it’s 20+ hours or not.

      2. It takes me 20 hours to finish Bioshock Infinite every time I playthrough it.

        I’m more hesitant to buy games these days because I have 4 kids and I only get a set amount of money to spend on games each month. There was no way I was going to buy I Am Setsuna for $40 because I kind of knew that I wouldn’t like it.

        If I spend $60 on a game it needs to have replay value. If I had more cash to spend every month that could change :].

        I never got into Minecraft, but I adore Terraria. I have over $100 hours in that.

        I’m also hesitant to spend more than $20 on a game I’m unfamiliar with as well, but I’ve been pleasantly surprised by some games I’ve taken a leap of faith on.

      3. Oh yeah dude, if you’re limited to how many games you can buy, grabbing things like Dark Souls 3, Fallout 4, and anything else you can soak hundreds of hours in makes total sense.

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