Excerpt: Whereas the sublime Shadow Hearts: Covenant was one half dark and one half crazy humour. From the New World is the third game in the series, and whilst it still has its dark moments, it brings the insane humour of the previous games right to the forefront. As the name suggests the game is no longer set in Europe, but instead takes place in 1930’s America, with you taking on the role of not Yuri of the previous two games, but Johnny Garland a sixteen year old detective,...
Conclusion: The story has a decent Lovecraftian mystery at its center, but it strays so far from the series’ gothic horror roots that you almost have to classify it as a comedy. When you spend half your time rescuing the Roswell aliens, busting Al Capone out of Alcatraz, and helping a talking cat finance his all-cat movie studio (Purramount, ha ha), it’s hard to take the game even remotely seriously.
Excerpt: Shadow Hearts: From the New World comes dangerously close to being outright awful due to the ridiculousness of the characters. Diverging from stereotypical warriors and princesses in RPGs is always welcome, but not when the characters are unique just because they are so absurd. The worst offender is a large talking cat that has mastered drunken martial arts. He is a mobster working with Al Capone on the side.
Excerpt: I have to say, this isn't a terrible game, but neither is it a great one. What it definitely isn't is a Shadow Hearts game. After the new and unique Shadow Hearts, and the amazing Shadow Hearts: Covenant, I was expecting the third game to be even better. I was disappointed to find that not only was it not better, it didn't feel like a true Shadow Hearts game at all. If you're new to the series, go ahead and try it out.
Pros: + Nice graphics, Shadow Hearts battle system
Cons: - Storyline lacking, Characters unconvincing, Music annoying
Conclusion: THE VERDICT: From the New World is not an award-contender like Covenant, but thanks to that unique and massively entertaining Ring, the gameplay is top-notch. The story isn't all that memorable, despite a nice little twist and dash of real emotion at the end, but the characters are humorous and likeable...well, most of them. The challenge depends on the player's skill, in both reflexes and preparation, and in the end, the entire adventure is very entertaining.
Excerpt: What do ninjas, talking cats, vampires, the mafia, shapeshifters, aliens, guitar players, monsters, and a sixteen year-old boy all have in common? A lot if we're talking about Shadow Hearts' latest sequel. XSEED's Shadow Hearts: From the New World is both like and not like your usual run-of-the-mill RPG. We got Amanda to check it out, and she handed us this review. Check it out.
Excerpt: The Shadow Hearts series has been steadily gathering notice in the realm of console role-playing games, due in large part to its great gameplay, bizarre occult-laced narrative set in the world of the early 1900s, and consistently crazy characters and humor. Shadow Hearts: From the New World brings all those series staples to the Depression-era Americas, with some new twists.
Pros: Lots of wild, interesting characters and combat styles, Crazy narrative that mixes murder and the occult with offbeat humor, Judgment ring and stock system put a focus on great combat
Cons: Side quests are the only way to gather new special abilities, Dungeons are typically small and can feel repetitious quickly
Conclusion: Shadow Hearts 3’s true length depends on how many character quests you decide to take part in. The average completion time is about 30 hours. Luckily, the usual “New game +” option is present, where you can start a new game with some of your items and stats intact from your previous game. There is a lot of replay value, especially since you will miss out on a lot of quests depending on which character you use the most.