With no new games being purchased, this year provides me a great opportunity to go back and play some classic JRPG’s I have been meaning to play. One of those is “Breath of Fire” for the Super Nintendo.
I’ve always known about Breath of Fire, but just never got around to playing any of the series. Like the OCD person I am, I always have to start with the first so I refused to buy any of the sequels. Luckily at MAGFest 2013, I was able to secure a copy from Jay (Game Chasers).
After browsing my collection for something to play, I finally decided to give Breath of Fire a shot. The first thing I noticed was that it was published by SquareSoft! I always thought it was a Capcom title (and it is), but I guess the first one was published by SquareSoft.
The story is somewhat generic. The world is at war between these “dragon” clans, light and dark. You live in a village that supports the light dragons, when suddenly the dark dragon clan devastates the village. It is up to you, the average village boy, to save the day. I found the whole “Breath of Fire” universe to be somewhat lacking. Villagers repeated lines, there was little exposition, and there wasn’t really anything interesting about my character.
Even the combat is lackluster. I call it a “Press A to Win” system. You can basically kill EVERYTHING by just attacking, with little to no strategy. But then, the game totally throws a wrench in your plan by making boss fights somewhat difficult (now I have to randomly heal while pressing A!). After about 12 hours of gameplay, I decided I had no motivation to continue and didn’t really care to play anymore. Interestingly enough, a lot of people online agree. Breath of Fire 1 & 2 apparently have not aged well at all. Maybe I’ll check out the 3rd or 4th installment.
On the other hand, my friend Steven has this series on his list of JRPG franchises that needs to die. Perhaps I’ll move on.