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Shining the Holy Ark
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Console: Sega Saturn
Year: 1997
RFG ID #: U-060-S-01910-A
Part #: 81306
UPC: 010086813067
Developer: Sonic! Software Planning
Publisher: Sega
K-A (ESRB): Mild Animated Violence

Genre: RPG
Sub-genre: 3D Adventure
Players: 1
Controller: Standard Controller
Media Format: CD-ROM x1
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Collection Stats:

  • 138 of 7390 collectors (1.8%) have this game in their collection
  • 20 of 7390 collectors (0.2%) have this game in their wishlist.
  • 1 of 7390 collectors (0%) have this game for sale or trade.

Crabmaster2000's Review:

Holy Ark is very much a dungeon crawler and you'll spend many hours wandering around forests/castles/dungeons/etc. killing monsters, looking for treasures and solving puzzles. Dungeon crawlers aren't typically super exiting, but something that I found interesting was the first person perspective in which you play the game. I found it quite fun wandering these vast levels, which are mostly designed as labyrinth like mazes. and in each new area and being able to look all around for secrets in statues, pots and even walls through your characters eyes.

The battling is quite standard for a turn based RPG. You'll select your options through menus (attack, magic, item, etc.). The game stays in first person view during fights also, so you'll see your secondary characters come out to attack, but the camera (your character) will move forward to fight. One of the things that kept the battle exciting was the ability to substitute characters in and out every single round. All characters you have found collect experience after each battle. Even if they didnít fight or weren't in your party. This means that everyone keeps up level-wise and because of that each character is actually useful for different battles. Once you get leveled up enough you can just stick with your 4 favorites for the most part, but boss battles are especially challenging and you'll often need to swap characters in and out after each round in order to survive the fight.

Another neat aspect that helps keep the dungeon crawling feel much less tedious is the Pixie system. During your exploring you'll come across various different pixies which can aid you such as Leprechauns or Succubus to name a couple. There are 5 different types in total and once you have obtained them they will be displayed on the lower right hand corner of the screen. Now each different type of enemy that appears will attack from a different angle (top, bottom, left, right or straight at you) when the battle first starts. By using the L and R triggers you have a very small timing window to swap to the appropriate pixie (each different type of pixie corresponds to a different angled attack) and unleash them at the opposing enemy. If you are successful the pixies of that type will attack the enemy before combat starts giving him some minor damage, and when the battle is finished the pixie will reward you with extra gold and exp for you efforts. By finding more of the same type of pixie you'll increase their effectiveness. So it really pays off to explore each area thoroughly to find new pixies to add to your party, and it definitely pays of to master using them since it will great boost your teams exp level.

The story is ok, but nothing spectacular. Its also easy to forget about it at times since you can spend hours in between each section of dialogue. You really need to like the gameplay in order to enjoy the game, since you cant really fall back on story and characters like in some other RPGs.

The music is really fantastic at first, but after hearing it for 35+ hours it would have been nice to have a bit more selection.

Shining the Holy Ark is a fairly slow game and definitely not for everyone, but if your craving some exploration and looking for an under appreciated Saturn game please check it out.


Console Reg. Type Title Publisher Year Genre
Sega Saturn E S Shining the Holy Ark Sega 1997 RPG
Sega Saturn J S Shining the Holy Ark Sega 1996 RPG
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logical123: Part #, UPC, Developer, Game Rating
Funk_Buddy: Variation Tie-In
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Last Updated: 2015-04-02 12:58:40
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