Every couple of months, it seems like a new Yu-Gi-Oh! game is released. While a Yu-Gi-Oh! game has come out on all of the major consoles, Yu-Gi-Oh! seems to be best placed on the GBA. Konami has released their most recent Yu-Gi-Oh! game, Reshef of Destruction.
Reshef of Destruction follows Yugi and friends as they try to release the power of the Egyptian God Cards after the cards have been turned to stone. To restore the cards, artifacts called the Millennium items must be gathered together. Yugi and friends will travel to different locations to collect the Millennium items and duel opponents along the way.
Reshef of Destruction uses the same engine as Konami’s previous Yu-Gi-Oh! game The Sacred Cards. TSC had some flaws in it. Did Konami improve the engine or does the game feel like more of the same?
The GBA definitely is not a graphical powerhouse, but some programmers seem to be able to stretch the abilities of the GBA graphically. TSC looked pretty nice, and RoD looks almost exactly the same. The characters on screen have a bit of a cel-shaded effect around them. However, the game uses several locations that were originally found in the original game.
The card graphics are replicated closely to their real-life counterparts. In the details screen, the text is large and easy to read. However, when moving to the deck or trunk screens, some of the text is hard to read, and it’s difficult to tell which cards the player actually owns and how many are in the player’s deck.
The dueling screen looks like the same one used in TSC. Graphics of the individual cards are actually displayed on the screen instead of by the different border colored cards used in The Eternal Duelist Soul, Stairway to the Destined Duel, and World Championship 2004. A bar going across monster cards also helps to give a quick glance of the cards offensive and defensive strength.RoD sounds a lot like TSC. Throughout most of the game, the same music is played. Occasionally, the different battle stages will play different music. A new addition to RoD is found while battling Joey or Yugi. Konami got the cartoon voice actors to actually say something like “My turn” when dueling them. While this is a nice touch, anyone who has played TSC would not find much difference in the music or sound effects in RoD.
Here are the comments from the Control section from my TSC review:
Control doesn’t have to be anything special for the game, but they are intuitive still. During the adventure mode, your character moves while using the D-pad, talks using the A key, and challenges players to a duel by hitting the R key. During the duels, move using the D-pad, select using the A, cancel or status screen using the B key, and see how many cards the opponent has by hitting the R key. A nice new feature shows up by pressing and holding down the L key, which will darken the screen and show the attack and defense points of each monster card on the player’s side of the field, as well as any face up monsters on the opponent’s side. The controls may be a bit too touchy at times, but for the most part they are more than adequate.
The exact same thing can be said about RoD.
The game has two parts, the adventure mode and the dueling mode.
In the adventure mode, the player moves the “Main Character” (yes, that’s what he’s called in the book), while Yugi and Joey follow behind. It’s almost reminiscent of Knuckles and Tails following Sonic in Sonic Heroes. While in this mode, the main character will talk to other characters and challenge them to duels. During this time, the player can also customize his deck with the cards accumulated through duels or bought in card shops.
While the adventure mode gives the player a feeling of being there, the main action of the game is in the dueling mode. TSC had some rule changes, such as the ability to only hold five cards in your hand at one time. Because of these changes, the game felt very limited. Konami had time to update the rules for this game, but unfortunately they didn’t. While the five card limit didn’t feel that limiting in TSC, it feels more limiting in RoD.
As in the other Yu-Gi-Oh games, deck construction is essential to doing well in the game. While the game has several new cards, the problem with the game lies in the initial starting deck. While the initial deck has a nice variety of weaker and stronger monsters, it almost completely lacks any magic and trap cards. These are essential for a good deck. While cards are earned from winning duels, most of the time these are more monster cards. Cards can be bought at a shop, but most of these cards are so expensive that it will take a long time before they are actually affordable.
At the beginning of the game, either the opponents are too easy or too difficult. The lack of magic and trap cards hinders the early portion of the game. Those who are patient enough to get through the introductory duels are in for some challenging duels. However, life points are not restored automatically, which really makes the life points more important. To restore life points, the character has to go to the “Main Character’s Room” and stand in front of the PC in the room.The game does have an interesting story for those who follow the Yu-Gi-Oh series. However, the game is still relatively short, since the GBA doesn’t have the storage space to have a large RPG, especially with all the memory needed to store each card’s information.