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09.02.2014
Jailbreak virgins can rejoice, now that Secret of Mana has been finally released as an official iPhone app.  Is it a proper port or just a quick  cash in?
The start menu has a couple of options, New Game, Load Game, Website, Options and Manual.  The manual is 76 screens, and is pretty damn indepth. At the new game screen already and it’s nice to see that some effort has gone into new artwork.
The menu interface has also been simplified.  While the old ring system remains, the menus are also touch sensitive, so you can just select what you want instantly instead of having to rotate around to the selection you want. The graphic of this game was wonderful even on SNES however the background of the dialog screens was really ugly. The game features three lengthy main plotlines, six different characters, each with their own storylines, and a wide range of classes to choose from, which provides each character with an exclusive set of skills and status progression. Although the game was only published in Japan, many Western players have been able to come into contact with Seiken Densetsu 3 thanks to an unofficial English fan translation. Seiken Densetsu 3 acts very much like its predecessor Secret of Mana, as it employs a real-time combat system, making use of a ring menu which provides the player with quick access to magic, items and character information, amongst other options.
A battle mode was introduced as part of the gameplay, which freezes some aspects of normal gameplay (such as item storage) to allow the player to focus on defeating monsters. Unlike the prequel, however, instead of setting the characters' range to the enemy and their level of aggression, the player sets directives on the character's behavior during combat, such as taking an individual target or supporting another character.
Level progression is coordinated by the player, as a choice is given regarding where to invest a character statistics point at every level up. Certain events only happen during certain times of day, such as a nighttime-only black market selling particularly rare items.
According to Seiken Densetsu 3's in-game lore, the Goddess of Mana created the game's world by forging the powerful Sword of Mana and defeating the eight Benevodons with it, sealing them within eight Mana Stones before turning herself into the Mana Tree and falling asleep.
With the exception of Charlotte, the characters are told (or otherwise decide) to seek the advice of the Priest of Light in the Holy City Wendel. All characters, on the way to Wendel, stay overnight in Astoria where they are woken by a bright light. He goes on to explain that, because the Faerie has chosen the main character as her host, he or she must travel to the Mana Sanctuary to draw the Sword of Mana from the foot of the Mana Tree to restore peace to the world. After journeying across the world to get the Spirits, thwarting the invasion attempts of Nevarl and Altena, discovering the powers of the Fire and Water Mana Stones released (by agents of Nevarl and Altena, respectively), and learning of the disappearance of the Mana Stone of Darkness along the way, the main character tries to open the gate to the Mana Sanctuary with the Spirits' assistance. The characters travel into the Sanctuary and the main character claims the Mana Sword; however, it is soon discovered that the main character's adversaries have captured the Faerie and will only release her in exchange for the Mana Sword.
The characters must then defeat the Benevodons before they can gather and destroy the world.
Duran (???? Dyuran) is an orphaned mercenary swordsman of the Grasslands Kingdom of Valsena (Forcena in the fan translation) who proudly serves his king, the wise Richard. Hawkeye (????? Hokuai) is a member of a guild of noble thieves based in the desert Sand Fortress of Nevarl (Navarre in the fan translation). Riesz (??? Risu) is the princess of the mountainous Wind Kingdom of Laurent (Rolante in the fan translation) and captain of its Amazon army. Kevin (???? Kevin) is the inarticulate prince of Ferolia (known simply as the Beast Kingdom in the fan translation).
Charlotte (?????? Sharurotto), the "cute little girl who lives in Wendel", is the granddaughter of the Priest of Light. The Benevodons (God-Beasts in the fan translation) are eight elemental monsters that are described as incarnations of disaster that once threatened the world, but were defeated by the Goddess of Mana. Darkshine Knight: The Dragon Emperor's other servant, who is actually Duran's father Loki, though this is only revealed if Duran is in the party when he is fought. Deathjester: The other servant of the Masked Mage, Deathjester is a rather clown-like being as his name would imply.
During the game's development and release, Seiken Densetsu 3 became known abroad as Secret of Mana 2.
One suggested reason against Secret of Evermore's favouring over Seiken Densetsu 3 is due to the establishment of a new development team at Squaresoft's office in Redmond, Washington.
In 2000, a English fan translation project led by hacker Neill Corlett was successfully completed and made available on the internet as an unofficial patch. The score for Seiken Densetsu 3 was composed by Hiroki Kikuta, who had previously composed the music for Secret of Mana. As in Seiken Densetsu 2 (Secret of Mana), the sky shows two moons in the opening animation. Originally this game only support 2-Players co-op, a step down from the 3-Players co-op of the second game. It all starts with a group of mischievous rapscallions who are busy playing in the woods when one of them falls into a nearby river (That’s YOU, BTW). A serviceable story is all I expect out of a game, and if it happens to give me more, then I consider it a bonus.
Before I leave this magical realm, a small word on the multiplayer: It is an absolute blast going on this adventure with someone who knows their stuff. But in all seriousness, this game is well worth the experience, despite a few stumbling moments out of the gate. The game also makes use of a time progression system, with transitions from day to night and weekday to weekday in game time, adding to the game's challenging gameplay. One of its main differences, though, is that the range of characters is doubled to six, with the player choosing the three members of his or her party when commencing a new game. Players can exit battle mode by moving off-screen or far enough away from the monsters for it to be disengaged (unlike Legend of Mana's "no-escape" mode). The player can also determine whether or not the AI characters will make use of their power gauge and what earned abilities they may use, though magic spells must be cast manually by the human player. The seven-day week cycles much more quickly than an actual one — a day passes in a number of minutes — but it still affects gameplay in certain ways. Reportedly, the use of the opposite elements according to day and time and the game's elementology are not weakened; for example, using water spells on a Salamander Day does not make them weaker than using them on a Gnome Day. Enemies encountered in the field also change during certain time periods, and some may be sleeping if characters approach them at night.
The game is set at a time when Mana starts to fade and peace has ended, as some people plot to unleash the Benevodons from the stones in order to gain ultimate power, both politically and magically. Following it, the light reveals itself to be a Faerie from the Mana Sanctuary (Mana Holyland in the fan-translation), exhausted by her journey. Once accomplished, the main character may then have his or her wishes granted by the Goddess of Mana if the Sword can be drawn before the Tree dies. The first attempt fails, but the second succeeds; the Faerie realizes that it was opened because someone managed to release the power from all the Mana Stones. The unfortunate trade is made, and once the enemy receives the Sword, the Mana Stones shatter and the Benevodons are released.
However, after doing this, they realize killing the Benevodons gave more power to their main enemy. Her mother, Valda, the Queen of Reason, uses her magic to keep the Altenish citadel in a perpetual spring.
Duran and his little sister Wendy were raised by their aunt Stella after Duran's mother died from a long term illness and their father was lost in battle with the Dragon Emperor.
The guild's leader, Lord Flamekhan, suddenly and uncharacteristically declares Nevarl to be a Kingdom.
After her mother, Minerva, dies while giving birth to her younger brother, Elliott, Riesz vows to take care of him.
Orphaned by her parents, the human cleric Leroy and the elf Shayla, she is looked after by a fellow cleric, Heath. One Benevodon exists for each element in the game: fire, water, earth, wind, wood, light, moon, and darkness. He was once an ordinary human, but possessed no ability for magic until the Dragon Emperor offered to make him the most powerful wizard alive in exchange for a piece of his soul. Loki was believed to have died fighting the Dragon Emperor, but the Dragon Emperor saw a use for the powerful warrior and revived him as his servant.
Heath is the son of the Masked Mage and previously a friend and father-figure to Charlotte.
He was once a human named Belgar, who, in addition to acting as the Holy City Wendel's Oracle of Darkness, was also a priest renowned for his skill in healing.
Bigieu's sole intent is following the will of the Dark Prince, but she notes that he "lost his soul" when he became a demon, and she hoped to "bring his soul back". Jagan is a vampire-like entity (and is harmed by Charlotte's Turn Undead spell as a Bishop).


The game was directed by Hiromichi Tanaka, who previously helped design the first three Final Fantasy titles and Secret of Mana.
Squaresoft stated in a 1995 issue of its North American newsletter that they planned to release the game during the second half of the year. According to Brian Fehdrau, the lead programmer for Secret of Evermore, the decision had absolutely no effect on any such translations and did not tie up any of the people involved in translation; it was specifically hired to create it and they would not have been assembled otherwise. Due to the increasing popularity of video game ROMs and the quick progress of emulators at the time, the translated version of Seiken Densetsu 3 was made available to many players from around the world in 2000. Kikuta completed it with little assistance, having performed the sound selection, editing, effect design, and data encoding himself. Luckily a reproduction cartridge with patch which would allow for 3-Players does exist though with it also required a multi-tap adapter to play it.
I will never forget renting it from the local Mom ‘n Pop and losing myself for hours as I bashed Rabbites, explored beautiful realms, and conversed with a talking cat! Lost, you try to find your way back home and stumble across an old sword, and just like that, it’s adventure time. Secret of Mana is perhaps my favorite story of the bunch, due in no small part to its three leading characters. You have the boy, who is stronger than the other two and levels up weapons at the speed of light.
In the beginning of the game prior to magic, this game will try your patience with unforgiving bosses, limited items, and if you are playing solo, a boneheaded A.I.
The combat system is a actually pretty well-thought out once you get through the beginning. A good team can outfit themselves at the store, maneuver the maps without getting stuck, and REALLY assist and support you in battle.
A lot of people say you should play it with a friend(s), but I had a frustrating experience that way. Although it’s a great game with two people the constant ring command demands put on both players can inhibit the overall experience.
A single variety of weapon is available for each character, and the "progression by means of use" present on the series' previous game was removed from the weapons and magic systems; now the only factor which influences a spell's damage is how high the character's "magic" attribute is.
When in battle mode, the character adds one point to his or her "power gauge" by making an attack which hits a monster (in place of Secret of Mana's vulnerable charge-up). Once a character reaches level 18, he or she is able to go to a Mana Stone and choose a class to progress to - either a class aligned to "Light" or a class aligned to "Dark" - which provides a different set of skills and different improvements to character statistics.
Using an inn's services allows the player to "skip" the game's clock to that day's evening, or the following morning.
Heroes of Mana is a direct prequel to Seiken Densetsu 3, taking place 19 years before the latter's story. Due to the Beastmen's werewolf powers, they are able to make an escape by night while the Beastmen are distracted.
Out of desperation, the Faerie chooses the main character to be her host, and tells them to get to Wendel. However, there is a catch: a great deal of power is needed to open the gate to the Sanctuary. The already-powerful villain absorbs the power of both the Sword of Mana and the Benevodons to become a god, but is halted by the Mana Goddess blocking some of his power.
The main storyline is determined by the first character chosen, however there is significantly more character interaction and dialogue if these pairs of characters are selected in the same party. However, like her country, Valda is cold and unfeeling towards her daughter, who has become lonely and selfish as a result of her upbringing. One night, Duran is on guard duty at the castle of Valsena when the Crimson Lotus Wizard attacks the castle.
Surprised by this, Hawkeye discusses the matter with his friends, Flamekhan's children, Jessica and Eagle.
However, two mysterious ninjas from Nevarl, Bill and Ben, trick Elliott into turning off Laurent's protective winds and promptly kidnap him.
Sick of the treatment of his people by "normal" humans, the Beast King's desired revenge is made all the more possible by the appearance of the mysterious "Man who devours death", who places his dark magic at Gauser's "beck and call". Feeling an evil influence in the nearby Castle City Jadd, the Priest of Light sends Heath to investigate; however, Charlotte overhears this conversation and, feeling a strange apprehension, sneaks out of Wendel.
When the villains acquire the Sword of Mana, the Benevodons are released into the world, and the player can fight the first seven in whatever order they wish. After suffering defeat, he loses his will to live without the piece of his soul given to the Dragon Emperor, and commits suicide. Although the Darkshine Knight retained his memories from living as Loki, he was fanatically loyal to the Dragon Emperor.
His origin isn't stated; the most that seems to be known is that he is the leader of a clan of dragons. At the start of the plot, he goes out to try investigate the disturbances with Mana and to try and save his father from his own darkness, but was abducted by the Deathjester and turned evil. One day, he found a disease that could not be cured with light magic and began using dark magic to find a cure, but the victim died before he found it. Despite this devotion, the Prince has never displayed any sign of caring for her and considers her expendable. He was the prince of the "Kingdom of Light", but for unexplained reasons was both hated and feared by his people.
Manga and anime artists Yutaka Izubuchi and Nobuteru Yuki were responsible for the character designs and character illustrations respectively. This may have been accompanied by a decision not to continue translating titles, including the sequel to Secret of Mana. At the time of its release, the translation was the most sophisticated hack of its type, with assembly hacks for script compression and variable font width, as well as overcoming technical difficulties in dumping and re-inserting the original script. The soundtrack features 60 tracks on 3 discs and was published by NTT Publishing on August 25, 1995 and was republished by Square Enix on October 1, 2004. My only regret was that I did it solo, as no one else in my circle of friends liked these sorts of games and my Dad despised them.
The Boy, The Girl, and The Sprite will never go down in history as one of the great leading trios, but something about these characters has always kept my attention longer than the usual melodramatic fluff that Square is known for.
You only want to attack when your bar is 100 percent, otherwise you will only do a percentage of the damage you normally do. And I can think of no better way than settling down with a friend or loved one and disappearing into a world where magic still lives and hopes and dreams take flight.
I have to say I’m enjoying it so far, not as much as Chrono Trigger but it’s still a very fun action RPG! But a magic sword has tricked a young warrior into upsetting this balance, spreading evil throughout the land. A storage system was introduced for any excess items, replacing Secret of Mana's "four-of-a-kind maximum rule".
When the gauge is full enough, special moves can be unleashed - moves vary according to the character and their class.
Mana Holy Day is also notable in the game's calendar as players can use the inns' healing and time-skipping service for free, while a nominal charge is given on other days.
There, while the main character is explaining her or his grievances to the Priest of Light, the Faerie interrupts and explains that the Mana Tree is dying and that the Sanctuary is in danger. The Faerie does not have the strength to do it alone, and the ancient spell which would do so by unlocking the power in the Mana Stones also takes the caster's life. After storming the villain's stronghold and defeating his minions, the characters go and defeat their main enemy, but are unable to stop him from destroying the Mana Tree. Duran is left for dead after confronting him, and after making his recovery, he vows to become the best swordsman in the world and to exact his revenge.
Hawkeye and Eagle decide to confront Flamekhan about it, only to find that he is in the middle of a meeting with his assistant, the witch Isabella, who turns out to be pulling Flamekhan's strings.
With the winds gone, Nevarl attacks Laurent with a cloud of sleeping powder and kills its king, Joster. He shows his abilities by making Kevin's beloved wolf-pup orphan friend, Karl, rise up and attack him while both are out in the Moonlight Forest.
After the Darkshine Knight dies, he is released from the control that the Dragon Emperor had over him, and tells the heroes that he has faith in their power to stop the Dragon Emperor. If Charlotte or Kevin aren't the main characters, Heath is never fought as a boss and instead wanders about. Belgar continued dabbling in dark magic and eventually discovered a spell that could revive the dead.


A notable event only occurs if the main characters are not Hawkeye or Lise: after the Dark Prince is killed by the main villain, Bigieu kills Jagan off-screen and releases Elliot before killing herself, seeing no reason to live without the Dark Prince.
He is fought and killed by the characters if Hawkeye or Lise are the main characters; otherwise, he is killed by a grieving Bigieu after the remains of the Dark Prince's body are destroyed. The demons of the underworld offered to make him their leader in order to obtain revenge; the prince accepted and soon destroyed his former kingdom. Yuki's artwork for the game can be found in the rare Nobuteru Yuki Seiken Densetsu Illustration Book. There is an apparent misconception among video game fans that the SNES title Secret of Evermore was released in lieu of an English language version of Seiken Densetsu 3 in 1995. Citing Nintendo Power, the probability of a North American release for Seiken Densetsu 3 was low due to "a technical nature" and that it would have been far too costly to produce at the time.
The game was also translated to French ,German and Spanish based on the English fan translation. The main theme from Secret of Mana, "Where Angels Fear to Tread", makes a return in this installment. As with Wiki of Mana, the text of Wikipedia is available under the GNU Free Documentation License. Despite saving the townspeople from certain death, the elder of the village makes the decision to banish you forever, lest you bring more monsters into the community. All of this happens during the most vulnerable part of your journey, where you have limited resources and are still attempting to learn the game’s system.
Weapons range from the ubiquitous sword to bows and spears, and each weapon differs slightly in speed and function such as the axe breaking rocks and the whip allowing you to cross chasms.
Mana is a completely different beast, coming from a time where it was about the journey and the person SITTING NEXT TO YOU.
Thus, the warrior must undertake a dangerous journey to find the seeds of the Mana tree which have been hidden for centuries. The player can switch items between storage and their ten-slot item ring menu, or else "top-up" items currently in it to a maximum of nine each. Once all enemies on-screen are defeated, the player has the chance to receive a reward item in a treasure chest. The second change requires the use of rare items to be performed, and once again an option between a "Light" and a "Dark" class is presented.
This is grave news for the Priest, for if the Tree dies, the Benevodons will reawaken and destroy the world. However, the Stones' guardian spirits (Secret of Mana's Elementals) are able to open the gate once their powers are combined. The Faerie fuses with what's left of the Mana Tree and will become the new Mana Goddess in a thousand years, but until then Mana won't exist in the world. So that her spell may continue and Altena does not freeze over, she, with her assistant the Crimson Lotus Wizard, decides to invade other nations to claim their Mana Stones.
Isabella (later revealed to be named "Bigieu") casts a spell on Eagle to make him attack Hawkeye, who injures Eagle gravely in self-defense. Forced to defend himself, Kevin's werewolf abilities are awakened; unfortunately, they come at the cost of Karl's life.
However, killing the Benevodons plays right into the hands of the villain as killing them sends their power to the Sword of Mana.
If Duran or Angela aren't the main characters, then the Darkshine Knight still reveals that the Dragon Emperor revived him before dying and that the Dragon Emperor's power is what kept him alive.
At the cost of Loki's life the Dragon Emperor was defeated, but he survived the battle and revived Loki as the Darkshine Knight and later recruited the Crimson Lotus Wizard as well. Regardless of which character is the main character, Heath eventually sacrifices his life to cure the Priest of Light's illness and is later revived by the Mana Goddess. Unlike the other villains, he seems to survive when the Masked Mage is not the main villain. He does not have a body of his own, but instead acts throughout the game by possessing the body of Lise's younger brother Elliot (though only in Lise and Hawkeye's stories; in the others', his remains are destroyed).
Ill feelings towards the lack of an official translation probably stem from titular and mechanical similarities. This is further supported by Fehdrau, who mentions that Seiken Densetsu 3 had some bugs, hindering its likelihood of being certified for release by Nintendo of America.
The track "Meridian Child" was performed by the Tokyo Symphony Orchestra for the fifth Orchestral Game Concert in 1996. The banter you hear out of them is very similar to the kind of talk that any gamer playing in multiplayer can relate to. The sprite is your nuker and debuffer, crippling and destroying enemies with damaging elemental magic.
Sometimes, a "prize" wheel of traps is given when opening the chest; this can be eluded by timing the cursor to fall over an "OK" disc. However, there is a key difference between the second class change and the first class change. Once done, she would sacrifice her daughter to the ancient spell which would unlock the power of Mana kept in the Stones, opening the way to the infinite power held in the Sword of Mana. After seeing that the Beast King is sending an invasion force to overthrow the humans' precious Holy City Wendel, Kevin overhears the Beast King congratulate the Deathjester on his spell. The Dragon Emperor's intent is the most simplistic of the villains: he simply wishes to dominate that world to do with it as he pleases. During this time, Belgar became corrupted by the dark magic and became the Masked Mage, developing a strong hatred for the living.
His aim is to merge the human world with the underworld so that he can rule both, and he even displays a desire for the demons to be worshipped in place of the Mana Goddess. Each character has a reason for the journey, but aside from this motive the detail stops there, allowing the player to be the vehicle.
It’s a great system that is made for the drop-in multiplayer that the game was created for, with each person taking on a different role.
Oftentimes you will find yourself watching helplessly as your dumbass computer-controlled allies get trapped in a corner and pelted with arrows until they die. And all of these are quick to equip and look through thanks to Mana’s revolutionary Ring System which was designed specifically to cut down on menus. The game also showcases the Mode-7 in a spectacular fashion, most notably when you are in the world map screen while you are … get this-BLASTED TO YOU”RE LOCATION BY A CANNON!!! He is imprisoned and is awaiting his execution when Isabella informs him that she has given Jessica a cursed necklace; should Hawkeye tell anyone the truth, she will be choked by it. His true form for the final battle is the Huge Dragon, which lives up to its name as he is so big he cannot be fully shown on-screen.
His true form for the final battle is the Arch Demon, which is also the only final boss with two forms. This says nothing of the castle itself which is full of kung-fu werewolves that can kill you in seconds. Weapons can be upgraded to do more damage, and to add different secondary effects like poisoning enemies. What is equally funny is that the game even pokes fun at how inconsistent this kind of transportation can be. The reward was the journey and the end was gamers growing closer; two things that are lost in the current climate. Counting all possibilities, there is a total of seven possible classes for every character, including the initial class.
He declares the Beast King is not his father and states his desire to find his mother and some way to revive Karl. We conclude this exercise in frustration with a fight against a tiger creature that is rage-inducing and almost enough to make you want to quit. As I look back, I can put all the pieces in place to determine why this game is so venerated: Whimsical fantasy reminiscent of The Neverending Story and Willow, a story and gameplay system that revolves around companionship, and the ability to stomp a mudhole in the ass of BLUE HEDGEHOGS!!!! The Masked Mage's son, Heath, tried to stop him but was corrupted and became his father's strongest servant.



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