RF Generation.  The Classic and Modern Gaming Databases.RF Generation.  The Classic and Modern Gaming Databases.

Posted on Nov 2nd 2010 at 01:20:48 PM by (Crabmaster2000)
Posted under Shining the Holy Ark, RPG, Saturn, First Person, Sega, Dungeon Crawler

Its been a while since I've touched on some SEGA goodies so I'm gonna do a game for my favorite SEGA system again this week, the Saturn.

Most of you are probably family with the Shining series and maybe even played one or two, but Shining the Holy Ark seems to go largely unnoticed. That is probably because of its odd mix of game styles and repetitive nature.

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 arn'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.

Permalink | Comments [4] | Digg This Article |

Recent Entries
Tom Clancy on the Wii - Part 2 - H.A.W.X. 2 (6/23/2018)
Konami Collector's Series - Castlevania and Contra (6/22/2018)
Episode 50 - RF Generation Playcast (6/18/2018)
Why Do We Collect Video Games In 2018? (6/18/2018)
Perfect Sequels: Zone of the Enders l Review The PS2 (6/15/2018)

I picked this one up on release and really enjoyed it back then. I was a big fan of Shining in the Darkness, so this one drew me in. Nice write-up as always, and I hate to think of this game as unloved.
didn't Camelot make this game? Or am I mistaken?
I love this game and mirror everything Duke.Togo said.

 Login or register to comment
It appears as though you are not a member of our site, or are not logged in.
It appears as though you can not comment currently. Becoming able to comment though is easy! All you need to do is register for the site! Not only will you be able to access any other site features including the forum and collection tools. If you are a registered user and just need to login then you can do so here.

Comment! It's easy, thoughtful, and who knows you might just enjoy it!
Login / Register
Not a member? Register!
Database Search
Site Statistics
Total Games:
Total Hardware:
Total Scans:
Total Screenshots:
[More Stats]
Our Friends
Digital Press Video Game Console Library NES Player The Video Game Critic Game Rave Game Gavel Cartridge Club Android app on Google Play RF Generation on Discord
Updated Entries
United Kingdom

North America



United Kingdom

United Kingdom

Belgium, Netherlands

United Kingdom
Updated Collections
New Forum Topics
New on the Blogs
Nielsen's Favorite Articles

Site content Copyright © rfgeneration.com unless otherwise noted. Oh, and keep it on channel three.