Cris Tales

Cris Tales won’t be out until November, but there is currently a free demo available on PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and Steam. I’d been meaning to try this for a while now, but I just kept putting it off to do other things (I’ve been playing quite a bit of Red Dead Redemption 2, to be honest).

So I finally got around to checking out the Cris Tales demo, and I was immediately hooked. Well, almost — I had to get past the opening segment, which deals with two characters named Cris (Crisbell and Cristopher) and a combat tutorial that’s perhaps not the most intriguing way to begin a game like this. However, that opening only takes a few minutes, and the combat is actually quite fun. After that, the game truly begins.

Cris Tales

The art style is absolutely gorgeous, and the menus have a lovely stylized look that makes them really pop. The way the combat options are angled outward reminds me just a bit of Persona 5 (which had some of the most stylish menus ever). The game will catch your eye from the second you fire it up.

The premise is great too. What I’ve sussed out of the hour or so I spent with the demo so far, Crisbell is a girl who has the power to look both into the past and the possible future. This means she can spot disaster before it happens and attempt to change it. And, this being a game inspired by JRPGs, there will be disaster coming.

Cris Tales

This time-perspective is illustrated visually in-game via a prism effect (shown above), with the present being in the middle, the past being off to the left, and the possible future being to the right.

There’s a charm to Cris Tales that really does remind me of some of the JRPGs I enjoyed back in the 1990s (the opening animation also reminds me of a Saturday-morning cartoon). It’s all very lovely, and if the rest of the game is as charming and wonderful as the opening hour, then this is definitely going to be a memorable addition to 2020’s game lineup.

I can’t wait to dive into the full game when it launches on November 17 2020.

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