Last Level Press

Review: Code of Princess

Reviewer: Olen Bjorgo

I have no idea what to say about this game. I didn’t enjoy it as much as I thought I would, and it feels like the game knew this would be the case. That’s not to say I had high expectations for this game, but I don’t feel like playing it more than I have to. I guess the best way to explain this is it’s like eating a bucket of ice cream: it gets kinda blah after a few bites if you’re not a sweet tooth, and when you still see all that you can do you don’t want to finish it but feel like you’re wasting money if you don’t eat enough of it.

Code of Princess is a multi-planed side-scrolling action RPG following the quest of Princess Solange Blanchefleur de Lux, our heroine who has an outfit to rival Princess Leia if she thought being in her metal bikini was a good idea for fighting, trying to defeat an empire ruled by an empress bent on ruling the world by eliminating the monsters that have lived “peacefully” with humanity since forever and a day by using the mighty DeLuxcalibur. With a cast of colorful characters, it’s up to them to save the world using a holy sword large enough to make Cloud and Sephiroth unsure whether they should laugh at the funny implications of a bare-bodied, busty, blue-eyed blonde using such a big sword or be in disbelief that it’s in a game that doesn’t really take itself seriously. You know, because of how I just described the protagonist without exaggeration.

Pictured: Subtlety.  Pure subtlety.

Despite my jokes, the game does at least look good. Even the blandest environments you encounter are presented decently enough to give a good backdrop to the countless fights you’ll have, because let me tell you, there is a ton of fighting. And since there is a ton of fighting you’ve got to have some good looking characters and monsters. Some of the best looking character models are, as you might guess, the heroes and the villains. Personally, I’m more partial the villain designs, if only because we don’t see them as often as the heroes and, in proper fashion, they have outfits that are more grandiose. Plus, in a remarkable twist, the 3D effect actually adds something to the game. As I stated previously, the game is multiplaned, which means that you can move your character into one of three different levels of the battlefield. This means that when you play with the 3D on, the enemies will actually look either closer or further in relation to the plane you’re fighting in.

Editor:  Huh, I didn’t realize this was set in Detroit.

On the music front, the game is lacking. Except for the title screen, and perhaps an upbeat Irish jig you’ll hear maybe twice, there really isn’t any track that sticks out. The voice acting, however, is remarkably great. Atlus games tend to be good in this regard, at least in their English dubs, and I can’t imagine you would be disappointed by any voice work you’ll hear in the game. In the hands of less-capable people, this game could have been abysmal and border on cheesy with its dialogue rather than funny and amusing.

It’s a dry humor.

The four main characters you can fight as during the Campaign mode all specialize in different styles of fighting, and each move in response to their styles: Solange is slow with her heavy sword, the slowpoke necromancer Zozo is your mage and is most effective from a distance, the thief Ali Baba is quick and uses bombs, and Allegro is a bard who can fight with an Angus Young style kick or by playing his electric guitar. There are other characters you can fight as outside of the Campaign mode, each with their own unique styles and movements, and that does leave room for you to master numerous other characters, but this would require you to play through the same levels over and over again. To some it could be worth it. To me? Not so much. Not that mastery will really amount to anything since the game suffers from the same flaw that fighting games tend to have: you’ll probably win if you just mash the right buttons. The only advantage is the equipment you choose.

The game doesn’t take itself too seriously and, for all intents and purposes, neither should you. You go through most of the game on a single quest to save the world because the empress is bad and monsters are evil and other generic fantasy stuff that you deal with. The ending does throw a curveball when you’re suddenly supposed to make a choice…which means nothing since you can replay the mission, pick the other one, and see a different ending. Maybe this was poking fun at the increasing role of choice making in RPGs, but seeing as how this is the same game that has a money-grubbing talking cat that serves as your equipment store and is only helping you because Allegro is in his debt and can’t die… yeah, I doubt that was their intention.

I’m sorry.  It’s not me…it’s you.  And your horrible, tentacled, mammoth-tusked

nightmare beast familiar.  Mostly the nightmare beast, really.

There really isn’t anything to compel you play Code of Princess except the interaction between the characters. There are better games to play that have you saving the world. There are better games to play that have you fighting tons of monsters. There are better button mashers. There are certainly better RPGs. If you find it for cheap somewhere, and want to play a game that goes off the beaten path a bit, this is pretty good. If you want something that doesn’t feel like a chore to play, maybe don’t go for this. This is a game that is good in short spurts but, like the twelve year olds who are probably playing this game for the wrong reason, you’re better off spending your money on better titles.

Rating: 4.8

Visuals: 6
Audio: 6
Controls & Mechanics: 4
Atmosphere & Experience: 4
Entertainment Value: 4

  Consoles: Nintendo 3DS

  Developer: Agatsuma Ent./ Bones

  Publisher: Agatsuma Ent./Atlus

  Release Date (U.S.):  Oct 9, 2012

  Release Date (U.K.):  N/A

  Release Date (JP):  Apr 19, 2012

Final Verdict:


Last Level Press © Copyright Cliff Davenport  Est. 2013.  Links | Legal Notices

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