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About the Product
- Play the young magician Cain on a quest to find the ultimate magic ring in this exciting role-playing adventure
- Fight numerous beasts and find ancient magical items supposedly buried long ago
- Enhanced polygon graphics offer an excellent first-person perspective of a 3D world filled with giant dragons and enemies
- Features real-time atmospheric effects like time of day and weather
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The game itself begins with a narration introducing the character Cain and a background story using a series of pictures that are drawn in a style reminiscent of medieval art. After the narration, you see Cain on a sailboat heading toward an island. Cain and the boatman begin a brief conversation, which you expect to be voiced-over since the narration featured voice, but unfortunately they aren't. Instead you just see characters opening their mouths and moving their lips as the dialogue text scrolls on the bottom of the screen. Despite some lackluster sound effects and the absence of voice-overs, the game's soundtrack does manage to set an appropriate mood and atmosphere of the game.
Eternal Ring runs at a faster frame rate than From Software's previous first-person RPGs (King's Field, King's Field II, and Shadow Tower), which clocked in at 15 to 20 frames per second. In the beginning, your movement is relatively slow, but once you obtain a special object from the first boss, you're able to move faster, and the rate becomes satisfactory.
The graphics in Eternal Ring are a leap from its PlayStation predecessors, but there is still room for improvement. Considering that some of the most recent PS titles (such as Vagrant Story) have been visual marvels, one can't help noticing that the graphics on this PS2 game could've been better. For instance, the faces on many of the characters are very plain. On the other hand, the environments, though not incredibly populated, are really well done. The waterfall inside the caverns and the transitions from daytime to sunset to nightfall really are very impressive looking. The biggest mistake in the game's graphics is the collision detection. When enemies throw projectiles like a stone or even magic spells, your instinct is to hide behind a wall or an object to avoid getting hit. Unfortunately, these projectiles or magic spells go through walls, so you still get hit by them.If you have played From Software's previous first-person RPGs, you'll have an idea as to how Eternal Ring plays - for the most part. The game uses a first-person perspective, and you, as Cain, use a variety of weapons and magic spells to defeat your foes, though more of the latter than the former since the only weapons in this game are swords and you will not come across a whole lot of them. Instead, the game focuses more on the usage of magical spells. While you had a gauge for both weapons and magic spells in King's Field, only magic spells are available in Eternal Ring. The gauge indicates the charge time to cast spells. Magic spells can be obtained by equipping up to ten rings. More than 120 different kinds of spells can be created by producing different combinations of the rings' elemental jewels. Other rings may not provide you with magic spells but instead may enhance your abilities, such as increasing your stats. There are countless combinations for creating rings that have magic spells, and you could spend endless hours trying to complete the entire set. In that sense, there is potential for replay value.
The Dual Shock 2 controller features analog buttons, including the D-pad. The default setting in the game has the analog buttons turned off, and the sensitivity is on 5 (on a scale of 1 to 10). It's really quite necessary to have the analog button turned on and the sensitivity at 1. This makes movements much smoother and faster during gameplay, and you don't have to press the buttons as hard as you do in the default setting. Tapping the attack button during a fight supposedly induces lesser damage compared with pressing the attack button, but the difference was hardly noticeable.
The gameplay though has not changed much since the creation of King's Field, and if you are an expert at the game, then the usual routine of strafing around enemies in a circle and slashing enemies as you approach them still works in Eternal Ring. If you have experience with previous From Software titles, you will probably finish the game in 10 to 15 hours. As you may expect from this genre developed by From Software, there is a good story integrated into the game, but somehow your character, Cain, lacks personality and the ability to interact with the rest of the characters in the game. For instance, in one case Cain watches a man getting killed by a monster and doesn't react in any way.
With more development time, From Software could have polished this game much more, but instead it has arrived feeling rushed. Eternal Ring is definitely a leap from its previous title Shadow Tower and is promising what King's Field IV may offer in the future, but it's certainly not the type of game that pleases every gamer. Avid fans of King's Field and Shadow Tower will likely love Eternal Ring, but others may want to try the game out first.--Ike Sato--Copyright © 1998 GameSpot Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of GameSpot is prohibited. -- GameSpot Review
Top Customer Reviews
The cut scenes are uninspiring, with mouths moving much longer than it takes to get through the text. The monsters, like tadpoles and wasps, will drop water gems and feather gems for you to collect. The graphics are reasonable, but not up to some of the other PS2 game levels. Really, though, what you seek are the rings.
There are tons of rings in the game, and by equipping combinations of them you can create yourself a great number of spells or powers. Gameplay in this sense is quite intriguing - you can easily get caught up in gathering rings, figuring out which items work best for your style of gameplay, and fight to the end. Combat is reasonably interesting.
In general, though, I play RPG and action games not just to shoot hordes of monsters, but to really get involved with the characters. I just can't care about Cain - he has no personality, and it often seems like just a dungeon crawl (i.e. killing anything in your path) instead of a real game. I think they might have rushed this one to get out in time for the PS2 release, and hope that their next release will spend more time in development.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
my favorite part is making rings, but i got thing in a kinda timely manner.Published 4 months ago by Tiffeny
Let's start this review off by stating a very, VERY obvious fact that needs to be read if you DON'T know what this game is, who the company that developed it is, or if it's any... Read morePublished 7 months ago by Tubsiwub
Fun, challenging, puzzling and full of atmospheric adventuring. I recommend it!Published on May 16, 2014 by Christopher Guest
One of the first games I ever owned for PS2. Great game play for when it was released. Bought it used case, manual and disc came in immaculate condition.Published on January 30, 2014 by NeoSonic
its coolness like and stuff ya more words to follow. this is so fun. buy it. please. its good ya.Published on January 24, 2013 by JoYKiLL
Being a huge fan of Dark Souls and Demons Souls I wanted to check out some earlier games by the developer. Read morePublished on December 18, 2012 by Gooner
Eternal Ring just barely missed being a PS2 launch title. released in 2000, From Software (Notable for the popular King's Field series) created this wonderful RPG. Read morePublished on April 13, 2012 by Daniel Jeffreis
I originally picked up this game well used at a local second hand store near my house. After only an hour of play I could see this was an old school gem. Read morePublished on November 6, 2011 by Aaron Peeples