Lunar: The Silver Star is one of the most beloved classic role playing games. It was originally for the Sega CD and later remade for the PlayStation. And now, fans old and new can experience Lunar again on the go with Lunar: Silver Star Harmony for the PlayStation Portable (it’s based on the PSX remake). Join young adventurer Alex, who idolizes Dragonmaster Dyne—one of the Four Heroes who saved the world many years before. Alex teams up with friends old and new on a quest to become a Dragonmaster just like his hero, and they’ll end up saving the world from evil again in the process!
Lunar is pretty much a typical Japanese RPG. You’ll gather clues and buy items in towns, then venture forth inside dungeon caves and forest mazes to defeat enemies, gain experience, and progress the story along. Battles are standard turn-based fare. Run into roving enemies in the dungeons and you and a group of monsters will trade blows with physical attacks and blasts of magic. Unique to Lunar’s battle system is that enemies and allies can move all over the battlefield, so you’ll need to use some strategy and tactics so you don’t get surrounded! Defeated enemies net you experience points and items so you can level up.
Since I’ve never played a Lunar game before now, I can’t say if this remake truly does the original justice. However, I think Lunar fans will be happy with it. It certainly reminds me of other classic 16 and 32-bit RPGs I played back in the day. Lunar features animated cutscenes and voice acting to help enhance the experience, as well as memorable characters and a storyline that’s easy to follow and not overly convoluted. And the music is really catchy and memorable, too!
There are a few minor quibbles I had with the PSP remake, however. While the loading times aren’t TOO lengthy, they are long enough to be a bit annoying. Plus, the game has to load every time you enter a building or engage in battle, and that interrupts the game flow. Also, Lunar has all the trappings of a classic RPG, both good and bad. They certainly don’t spoonfeed you here, and sometimes goals can be a little unclear and battles can be tough unless you’ve leveled up enough.
Even with these minor quibbles, Lunar: Silver Star Harmony should please Lunar nuts and classic RPG fans alike. I would certainly choose to play this game over today’s modern and overblown RPGs like the recently released Final Fantasy 13 any day!
Lunar: Silver Star Harmony is rated T for Teen with ESRB descriptors of Mild Fantasy Violence, Mild Language, Partial Nudity, Suggestive Themes, and Use of Alcohol. While you trade blows and magic blasts in battle, violence is pretty mild as there is no blood and defeated enemies just disappear in a poof of light. While you do visit pubs to gather clues and talk about drinking in the dialogue, most of the mild language, suggestive themes, and use of alcohol appears in text only, and it’s mostly used sparingly as campy dialogue and light crude humor. Like many other Japanese RPGs, some of the female characters are a bit scantily clad, but it doesn’t happen very often. Personally, I’d be OK with some kids younger than teenagers playing this, but good reading skill is still a must as everything is text based.