Taken from Castle Paradox
Them's Fightin' Words: In the beginning of my playings of the Walthros games I started with the parody and didn't understand it too well. After playing Walthros, the original one, I have a better grasp of what PHC was doing when he was parodying. Walthros is a world that is very very vast and filled with many things. With tons of characters, a grand story, and well preportioned battles this is trully one of the best games I have played on the OHRRPGCE in a long time. Perphaps the best. Here's why.
Graphics: There weren't very many humans in this game. And Walthros being a world with floating fish, winged seals, and slime things with rocket packs this place doesn't have a need for them. Yet they are here anyways. The graphical detail to the characters wasn't anything extreme. Not counting the shading applied to the hero graphics the game would be very 8-Bit. Yet, PHC uses close to 4 or more of the same color in terms of shading. So if a character is simply two colors and maybe black and white then there goes 10 colors in the pallete slot. To outline the character with one tone, to fill it in with another, to shade light with the other, and finally with the last tone to make certain spots darker. It's a style I haven't seen in any other OHR game. As MulticoloredWizard has said to me about my graphics, they're like everyone is made up of plastic. Fenrir Lunaris goes into great detail and preportions his colors precisely. Each OHR Artist has their own unique style and PHC definitely has one.
Maptiles were by far the most impressive part of the graphical area of this game. There was so much variety. It seemed that for every area there was a tileset, even though I don't believe it was that way it certainly was impressive. In one area of the game, you are "in the pit" and there are these blue moss things. Getting close to one will fog up the screen. This was great scripting applied with great graphics. That whole pit was so detailed too. Vines along the walls, water dripping from walls. PHC let out all the stops on this one and it trully showed. The graphics were shaded and preportioned a lot more than the walkabouts, or the other graphics. Without these awesome maptiles the wonderful world of Walthros wouldn't look as beautiful as it does. The Dinosaur Village was another part of the game that was impressive to see. But enough about that. On to the next section of this review.
The cutscenes were perphaps either as good or better than the maptiles mentioned above. Every cutscene had a sensational amount of talent established into them. What impressed me the most was the precise amount of animation and frames put into these scenes. I know PHC uses some sort of Art Software and he has easily broke down each frame to be not only awesome to see but smooth. In the scene where Bob and the others break the barrier on the Silver Shrine it was amazing. Because each of the 5 mice lit up and then shot brilliant beams of light that burst the barrier open.
Storyline: *SPOILER-May spoil the game!*
You wake up one morning and journey to a Blue Shrine and face off someone whom is supposedly part of you. Yet isn't. It's you from another deminision/time period. In this Blue Shrine you see a crystal, yet no one can pick it up except you. Why? Because you are the one who is the descendant of the great Surlaw. You are Bob Surlaw.
Throughout his quest on Walthros Bob is trying to gather 5 mythical crystals that have the power to destroy the world he loves so much. Yet you can't just take a hammer and bash these crystals apart and think it's over because if anything that makes it worse. In one instance of the game an evil Dr.Mu who created the Super Walrus Man (hard to believe a man could create a walrus...) holds dear Bob in one of the shrines (white). And when a fight of Bob's team mates which include to name a few, Dinosaur Triple (group of dinosaur super-heroes), Salom, Super WalrusMan, Yuk, and various others the shockwaves of the fight cause the crystal to break sending all of them to different deminsions and since this crystal was broken you have to gather all 5 peices of the white crystal. At times this scene seemed dragged out. Yet in other times it was hilarious. For instance, the time when you control Super Walrus Man you meet up with the weird creature called the Woo. A floating rabbit head who knows everything about SWM and trys to exploit his madness and anger.
The story is pretty much the same from the very beginning. Gather all these crystals and take them to a shrine and melt them down so the world will be alright and good. That's kinda what made it a lil less exciting. Yet it held my interest. But what made the story expand into excellent character development was the things our Walthrosian heroes had to do to get to the crystals. Towards the end of the game a massive crisis takes over Walthros. When you go to the Green Shrine you find the green crystal has been stolen and then you go to the village it's at and learn about a new character and his deep past as a solider. Things like this are what this game so very great. Story and graphics have definitely backed each other up.
Yet towards the end of the game the story takes a bizarre and unexpected approach. When all 5 of these mystical Walthros cyrstals have been gathered and put into their proper place a weird thing happens and you find out that the Blue Spirit was stuck inside of Bob this whole time. Why? To gather strength and see what he needs for his vital plan to expand. And then he leaves to the Lunar Colony where you go through several intense battles to face him in the final showdown. Not only was it a suprise to see the Blue Spirit as the final boss but the story behind it all was simply amazing.
Gameplay: Somewhere along the boards I've read that OHR games can feel dragged out because of the length of their gameplay. Waltrhos has between 6-8 hours of gameplay depending on what you do. That may seem like a long time but to be honest I nearly beat the entire game in one sitting. Weird and cooky? Yeah I suppose. Anyways, Walthros not only had tons of hours of gameplay but some very nicely done plotscripting.
As mentioned before about the moss in the pit. That was perphaps my favorite display of the plotscripting. The way the fog thickened and when it got too thick a battle would pop up. That was very impressive and when I get a chance I will ask you about this PHC. Another thing that caught my attention immediately was the temporary sidescrolling game. Although it wasn't difficult to do I could tell based off how the ship moved, it still reminded me of OHRradius. And another thing that made that particular portion of the game impressive was the landing scene where the characters walked out of the Sky Flyer and they were small and dinky looking. These were two of the perphaps most impressive scripts I've seen in the game.
However there were some downsides to PHC's gameplay. It's emmense repition. The main thing that was reused was the color fading in script. So many times did the game fade in and fade out when other things could have done, but for the fact that they were all correctly placed and used it really doesn't matter. But with 5 crystals that's 5 repitions. And don't forget all those dramatic scenes with the white crystal shards.
Battle: My opinion towards the Walthros battles changed throughout the course of my playing. I played this game about 3 months back and only sat and played for maybe 10 minutes and got tired of how difficult the battles were. But then as I played it again 3 months later I saw that I was just not thinking. (THINKING=GOOD!). Using your abilities and skills instead of holding down the Enter key was definitely something to use and utilize. Without this strategy this game would be damn near impossible to beat. Bob Surlaw was perphaps the most useful character followed by good ole Super Walrus Man. One was an expert healer and the other, a grand mage with the most powerful spells and highest Magic Stats in the game.
Enemys weren't too difficult either. They were how can I say this, balanced. Every part of the game you get to it seems you are ready for it. Because of the fact that you really don't level up too much and you're around level 15-20 towards the final boss the stats of the hero pretty much stay the same. On a standard attack you'll do between 10-30 damage. Spells obviouslly do more. My point is, that every character had a strong point and the enemies were never too difficult. They seemed that way at times but that was the fun of the challenge.
Map Design: Maps were very well made. With excellent preportioning of distance between areas and the use of the Sky Flyer (airship type thing) it all fit in like clockwork. The fact that you could save anywhere was really something that was quite useful in this game. Because while you are off on such a huge journey and never knowing what is in store for you this technique is really remarkable to have. However the game would have been a bit more challenging and strategic if there were save points. But this really didn't matter. It all worked.
Balance: This is where Walthros achieves yet another gold. One thing PHC did fantasically was have every single character balanced. I am usually against the approach of having more than say 5 or 6 characters in the party. However in Walthros there are well over 15. That's a lot considering the fact that every character had a significant role and played a vital part in the events at hand and later on in the future. What really got me was the fact that there were 5 mice characters you had to find and use to break a barrier into a Silver Shrine. To me, I don't like putting even that many characters so close to one another in terms of getting them. But each mouse had a background a mission of their own. From spiritial independence to being a rebel leader amongst evil parts of their own city. Character development not only in story but also in terms of battle were done precisely. I could tell this because each area that your characters had to split up you always had one of each type of character class. Like one person was always designated as the healer and then there were offensive fighters. Yet every offensive character was unique in their own way. For instance, a character I loved for many reasons but two come to mind instantly. The character Rice. Whom is one of the 5 mice, but anyways. He had a really really useful move that countered a foes move. So the more damage that Rice took the more it dished right out. And since I have been working steadily on Halloween Quest 2 and one of the characters in it has a unique ability to counter it easily caught my eye and I put him in my final team to face Blue Spirit.
No enemy was ever too difficult either. With precise preportioning of HP and the other stats your heroes were always ready for the next fight. Whether it was a boss fight or anything. Perfect. The only thing I have to complain about is the lack of experience you recieve in the game. For the first 5 hours you earn crap for experience and you have to depend on equipment to give you a satisfactional amount of boost to your stats. Aside from the limited amount of experience this game was very balanced in more ways than I thought I'd see.
Music: My computer doesn't play BAM so I cannot judge this area.
Enjoyment: I enjoyed this game a great deal. There are few games I really get into. And when I find a game I like I usually sit and play it until it's entirely completed. I did this with Kingdom Hearts and beat it in less than 2 days. And I did the same with Walthros. In two sitting Walthros was completed. I loved every aspect about it and I really think everyone who does play it will. Whether you have different aspects on enjoyment like how JSH does about a significant meaning or I do for having fun this is your game. It gives you a deeper meaning of life and is generally a blast.
Final Blows: I used to think you were a tad over-doing it with Walthros, PHC, but with a game as excellent as this I don't blame you. Continue making Walthros games. I am eager to see the side story on every character in this glorious game.
Final Thoughts: This is the Lord Of The Rings of the OHR. An epic to be enjoyed by all.