Aida I’ve Failed You
The Land of Dasthir was a game I didn’t expect too much from, being an RPG made in RPGMaker and priced under a dollar. Expectations of RPGs such as a deep system, a medium to long amount of playtime, tons of locations, and a complex story were set aside as I loaded this game up. After playing through to the first battle and dying at it, twice, I either need to skip cheap RPGMaker games or set my expectations even lower in the future.
To start, the grammar shows a complete lack of two things: proper translation and proof reading. While this may be acceptable in many games at this price point, for RPGs it’s almost essential to get this right not only in terms of understanding the story but to keep players suspended in the world without getting distracted by incomplete sentences, among other errors.
It is possible that some players may excuse the distracting script as part of its cheap entry point charm, choosing to laugh and enjoy the mistakes like many did back when All Your Base was popular. Unfortunately the game play does not redeem The Land of Dasthir. While I did go into this blind and did not know that you only faced bosses with different strategies, there wasn’t enough info in game to point out the rules and restrictions of your character.
You start the game off receiving a dagger but have no options of equipping it or any weapons you purchase. Instead (at least in the beginning) you have the impression that you can’t equip anything and heading into your first battle is confusing because your FIGHT option does nothing to hurt the enemy. If you’ve bought a weapon from the town shop before this battle, you eventually find it in your ITEMS and use it, only to find out it has limited use as opposed to being a permanent weapon, and then you end up losing your first play through not because of the game’s difficulty, but because there’s a lack of knowing what you can and can’t do. There’s a right way to give players a hands off approach when it comes to RPGs and their difficulty (as Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy did back on NES) and then there’s the way The Land of Dasthir did it, having players fail time and time again until they piece together all of the game’s mechanics just so they can beat the first enemy they encounter.
I have more to say in my video review below, but as the game stands now it’s not worth the dollar it sells for (or the sale price it has of this review), but that does not mean The Land of Dasthir is a lost cause. A rewrite of the script to fix the grammar errors and a way to inform the player in game how the items and world works can quickly turn it from being not worth it to definitely worth it.