Developer: Arc System Works
Publisher: Arc System Works
Genre: fighting game kinda?
ESRB: T for teen
System: 3DS (eshop download only)
Do you have any idea how hard it was to find a review of this game? Not sure if google kept getting this game confused with Chrono Phantasma, or maybe nobody wanted to do a text review of this, so I am left with little choice now. Why? Well, I’m a curious bastard and there should be at least one person looking at today’s game. I just wish this BlazBlue game was good though.
Developed and published by Arc System Works, the same people behind BlazBlue, Guilty Gear, and even working on Persona 4 Arena, the game was released on the 3DS back in August. However, it’s been in Japan since 2012. Arc System Works has a bad time of making spinoff games I think, as I can recall some Guilty Gear games that deviated from the main gameplay, and were absolutely dreadful. This game…isn’t really that different. Let’s take a look.
This is probably the game’s strongest point. The graphical design was meant to mimic the art from the Teach Me Ms. Litchi! and Help Me, Professor Kokonoe! segments. Plus it’s also a good style to use for a spinoff game like this, especially with the focus mainly being on humor. The levels are sadly small. They are mostly just a platform with the occasional obstacle, like trains, or a laser gun in the last level. Each one is taken from some kinda stage within the BlazBlue series, though don’t really expect any kind of easter eggs or something. They also chose not to localize the voices, so only Japanese voice-actors remain. Not like English voices were needed anyway. Characters only “talk” during certain attacks.
The soundtrack also remains awesome as before, taking songs from Chrono Phantasma. Unfortunately…it seems to just play songs at complete random, even for characters not in the game, like I could be playing Jin, yet get Azrael’s theme instead. Moreover, I always felt Arc System Works can never properly loop there songs, and the problem persists here, so the song can end, silence, and then repeat only after a few seconds, the same song mind you. And the final battle music though felt extremely weak, not utilizing any of the awesomeness I have come to expect from BlazBlue.
I did start this out by saying this was the strongest point, right?
There is barely any. Apparently clones of the characters have been made, and ten characters have to find out what is causing this mess. Really, Kokonoe is behind it, and yes, that was the surprise. I just saved you $6 for that spoiler. The game isn’t meant to be taken seriously anyway, mostly just humor stuff.
Now some may think that the humor may make up for the story. After all, the game is obviously not meant to be taken seriously, similar to that of the Teach Me Ms. Litchi episodes. Unfortunately, the humor isn’t really that good. It might be a decent chuckle for some things, but other stuff is left incomplete, there are no after conversations for fights, and none of it was worth going through playing this game.
Clone Phantasma has a very simple gameplay style: you control one character, and the only way to kill enemies is to knock them off a platform, all while making sure you don’t get knocked off 3 times. Simple, right? Yes, and that’s kind of the problem: the game’s difficulty is weak unless you either suck playing at a certain character, or face the final boss, which is just a giant version of a character that only hops around while charging at you. That’s it. There are items that can help and detriment you, but nothing too terrible.
There is one thing to manage at least: the heat gauge. Each level increases your attack power, and how far you can knock an enemy. Unfortunately, it also determines how crappy your defense is too. And while you do have a super smash move to hit multiple enemies, potentially knocking them all out, this increase the heat gauge level, and if you use it too much, you can get stunned, leaving any enemy to knock you away with ease. This can also occur if you are hit too much. I will say this at least: characters do have slightly unique movesets, though it doesn’t matter much.
Some of the characters are horrible at knocking opponents off at times too. Apparently, at least during my experience, I had trouble controlling certain characters, and some even knocked themselves out, leaving charging types like Hazama and Taokaka risky to play. Or some were incredibly useless against the final boss, like Jin Kisaragi. Not that it really matters as the AI is also terrible. The only thing to worry about is the giant enemy, as the other bosses are simple to knock out just by luring them to the edge and smacking them away. Hell, the AI hits each other sometimes too.
There’s not even any extras outside of gallery art for beating the game, or achievements, which means absolutely nothing to me. There’s a challenge mode too, but not really worth it. And as far as I know, you can’t even change the palette colors for your characters. Odds are you can beat all the stories within a single day as well. And no, there is no multiplayer, so you can’t have fun with your friends either.
Not helping things is a glitch that, when you beat the main story with a character, the game will freeze before it ends. This has happened once to me, and should be avoided.
Overall, BlazBlue Clonephantasma isn’t a game you should concern yourself about buying. It seems like a fun idea, but the simplicity of the game will make you quickly grow bored at this game, or just frustrated at the cheap final boss, which is the same every damn time. The humor is meh at best, and you can find much better stuff by picking up the other BlazBlue games and watching the Teach Me Ms. Litchi segments. Or hell, just watch those on YouTube for free!
BlazBlue Clone Phantasma gets a 2 out of 5.
I’m the Smartest Moron, and hey, at least this was better than Samurai Sword Destiny.