Lord of Magna: Maiden Heaven Review (3DS)

Lord of Magna: Maiden Heaven is a game that, if you have the patience to tolerate a rather big flaw, it will most likely grow on you. The story is interesting despite its cliché beginning (boy is saved from strange monsters by amnesiac girl). The protagonist, Luchs, is a young innkeeper who, because of a promise to his departed father, decides to help and house the young woman, Charlotte. We soon learn Charlotte (she is mostly called Lottie) has a gaggle of sisters, who also have varying degrees of memory loss.

The flow of the game mainly alternates between battles and cutscenes. The option to revisit previous battles to level up and earn items for crafting opens up early on. The cutscenes have small amounts of voiced dialogue. Depending on the scene, it can be the entire line or just an exclamation/grunt. Post-dialogue, Luchs can wander around his inn and talk to his team members (Lottie and her sisters). At certain points, a “heart event”  can occur between Luchs and one of the girls. This consists of a special dialogue and battle that only the pair take part in. The reward is a new special move for the participating sister. Seeking out these special moments fleshes out the story and personality of the characters.

The previously mentioned “big flaw” is the frame rate during battles. When too many enemies are on the map, the game stutters for several seconds. This sudden pause will occur every single round in the stage until the number of baddies has decreased significantly. The issue doesn’t crop up too much earlier on but, as soon a generators come into play and the leader monsters begin to take longer to defeat, allowing them to summon more of their allies, it becomes more and more problematic. At several points, I found myself killing off the fodder monsters for the sole purpose of alleviating these breakdowns.

The frame rate issue is a real shame because the battles can be fun. I have heard the mechanics likened to bowling but I think that sells it short. Yes, hitting one enemy can very well damage the one behind it or even send that one flying, creating a domino-like effect. However, that is only one part of the fighting system. Each party member has a different attack range and element (think fire, ice, etcetera). Not to mention you have to decide whether to after the leader monsters or attack their minions, thus encouraging them to summon more (which will cost them hit points). Additional battle completion requirements, called side-quests, reward you with special items for going the extra mile.

Despite the frame rate frustration, Lord of Magna: Maiden Heaven won me over. It isn’t one of those RPGs that you can marathon for 6-plus hours on end but it has charm. If you are tired of traditional battle systems, I would recommend you give it a try.

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About The Author

Associate Editor

Since the height of the Sega Genesis days, video games captured Natalie Kipper's heart and never let go. Her favorite genres are RPG, platformer, and puzzle but is always open to trying new things. If she isn't glued to a gaming console, she can be found at Disneyland or adding to her army of plush toys.