Last week, I talked about how patches in games sort of ruin the entire gaming experience for me. That got me thinking of a time when there were no patches and a time when I saw the very first game I fell in love with. It was an RPG and, for most people, that would mean Final Fantasy, that wasn’t the case for me. Nope, the very first game I fell in love with and the first RPG I really got interested in was Lunar: The Silver Star Story for the original PlayStation.
I think I was only 3 or 4 years old when my brother played this game and it really captured my short attention span. While I have blurry memories of games like Final Fantasy VIII, The Legend of Dragoon, Chrono Trigger and other more popular RPGs, Lunar: The Silver Star Story still sticks out in my mind so vividly and clearly.
I guess it definitely helped there was a innocent and, dare I say, child-like charm to the game. It didn’t have the overly dramatic feel of needing to save the world from a time traveling witch or the gritty tale of a civil war between nations. No, it had a very simple story: Alex dreams of being a great hero like his idol, Dyne, and, because of happenstance, he embarks on a worldwide quest to actually become the next Dragonmaster. He is accompanied by his childhood friend, Luna who has unknown magical abilities, and Nall, a weird flying cat-like creature. Alex meets up with other friends and, when Luna gets kidnapped, he sets off to rescue her.
Okay, so it’s not exactly Shakespeare. But it was just the thing that captured my young imagination. The overall cartoony look also helped extremely. I mean, the intro of the game was a gorgeous animated sequence that looked like an honest to goodness cartoon that I used to watch way back during the early days of cable. And it came complete with an awesome song to set the magical mood!
After I saw that intro, I was hooked! I eagerly awaited my brother to come home from school so that he could get back to playing the game… after he played the intro again, of course.
I hate to admit it but I really, really liked Nall a lot! I just thought he/she was the cutest little thing there was when I first saw it! I even like his original squeaky, high-pitched voice Nall had when I first heard it! Also, the idea of having a fluffy white cat that can fly around with me was just too much for me to comprehend! I wish there was a stuffed toy version of Nall I could buy!
This doesn’t mean that all of the other characters are boring. Far from it! Every one of them is incredibly interesting and unique. All of your friends, from the elitist wizard in training Nash to the brash Kyle, bring something unique to the table. Even Ramus, who only appears during the first few minutes of the game, has a very distinct personality. Even the bad guys have a solid motivation for what they’re doing! And, even though I was extremely young, I sort of understood it.
But the best character of them all, without a shadow of a doubt is Luna. There was just this gentle feeling I got with her. Even with the way that she speaks, there was this sense of kindness I couldn’t put my finger on. Later on, when the party reaches the boat and then she sang that incredibly heartfelt song, I cried. I didn’t know why but there was this sort of… sadness in the way she sang it. And I loved it. It’s still something I love to listen to once in a while. Even after 15 years of hearing it, I still tear up a little bit inside.
Of course, the game isn’t all seriousness. There are a lot of comedy in the game, which I really appreciated. Each character has their moments of comedy. While these jokes may not work on the gamer who’s used to “gritty” and “seriousness,” they did work for the little 3-year old girl that loved visual comedy!
I even loved the side quest where you have to collect all of the pictures of the girls in the game. It was a very silly quest and, well, kind of sexist, now that I think about it. But it was a fun side quest and I loved having my brother searching every nook and cranny of the world just to collect them.
I do know that there has been various remakes of Lunar: The Silver Star Story. But they’ve been altered in one from or another. One of the thing that really disappointed me is the fact that they changed the lyrics and the dialogue. I’ve searched YouTube and it just seems off, in my opinion. I’m guessing fans who’ve never played the original will love these new versions as much as I did anyway. But, for me, the original PlayStation version (which is actually a remake of a Sega Saturn game, go figure) will always be the one and only version of Lunar: The Silver Star Story. I’ve been hoping they do re-release this game on the PlayStation 3 or PlayStation 4, untouched, of course.
Speaking of updated games I want to see on the PlayStation 4 (which I hope to get on my birthday this June), I’m hoping they do a PlayStation Home version for Sony’s next generation console! And if they do, I have a list of things I want to see on it… which I’ll talk about next time!
How about you? Have you played the PlayStation version of Lunar: The Silver Star Story? Or have you tried out the other versions? What did you think of them? Whatever your opinion, let me know what they are in the comments section below!