September 02, 2015

Doraemon - Ranking

Story & World

As sloppy, bland, and predictable as one would expect from a licensed game.  It would probably help to be familiar with the Doraemon series, but I'm not about to devote that much time just to influence this category by a couple of points.  The world itself is interesting enough, with lots of different locales to tantalize the eyes, but the inhabitants are a shallow lot who do nothing more than waste a few precious seconds with their tomfoolery.  3/20

Character Development

The standard minimum stats (attack, defense, hit points) raise by a standard amount at standard leveling intervals.  Most characters are fairly close to each other in stats (especially the protagonist and Doraemon), leading to no variation in combat roles.  The roles can be augmented somewhat through the use of the "magic" items; each character can comfortably have up to four.  Attack/Defense can also be varied slightly through some pieces of equipment, but only ever by a pittance (~5% of the total).  5/20

Combat & Monsters

Combat only gets interesting in the second half after accumulating a good number of items and having the monster difficulty increase.  Up until then, it's the basic menu-driven button smashing we all know and love.  Monsters are the (no surprise) standard stock of melee fighters, with the very occasional status ailment.  By far, Doraemon was on the receiving end of the majority of missing turns due to his fear of rodents.  In retrospect, at least this served to break up the monotony of combat a bit.  7/20

Graphics & Sound

Surprisingly, the graphics aren't just of standard quality; they're actually pretty decent.  Each setting is quite distinct from one another, with one colour dominating most areas (otherwise clashing quite badly).  The monsters are hella creative and tend to physically get bigger as the game progresses (somewhat negating my previous whine about how small they were).  The music must not have been all that great because I can't remember a single tune.  One thing I do remember is that the tunes have a decent amount of dat bass (my preferred range).  11/20

Gameplay

The economy is a weird one since it exists to drive item activations in combat as opposed to actually purchasing anything.  I suppose it doesn't matter since the whole thing is broken right from the get-go.  The few items that won't need to be purchased are ridiculously cheap, leaving all gold points available for "magic".  It's an interesting concept, but with nothing else to choose from, gold might as well just be called MP.  The fact that everyone dips from the same magic pool is also kinda nifty, but this too is ruined as there is so much gold that nobody will ever run out.

The one saving grace from mediocre cash-grabs like Doraemon is that the lack of effort also applies to the game length.  It sucks and it's kinda boring to play, but no need to worry, it'll all be over real soon.  Then we can get back to the important things in life like... uhmmm... playing more JRPGs.  6/20

Final Ranking:  32/100