Secret of Mana is an action RPG released on the Super Nintendo and was a magical adventure that captured the imagination of many players.
The value of Secret of Mana is in the way in immerses you in it’s world. Back when games were 2D, Secret of Mana is as compelling as could be, placing you in the role of a hero on a wonderful adventure. Despite its often simple design, Secret of Mana featured a deep battle system, pleasing characters, a colourful world and even an addicting multiplayer function.
The background of the plot is that during an ancient war a hero used the power of the Mana Sword to destroy the Mana Fortress and restore peace to the world. Now as history threatens to repeat itself a boy, a girl and a sprite set out on an extraordinary adventure to re-energize the Mana Sword and defeat the Mana Beast. The story is straightforward, but the characters are charming and the journey is rewarding.
Game play is king in Secret of Mana and in a change from many SquareSoft titles of the time, this game utilises a real time battle system with a percentage gauge that determines the strength of an attack. Quick attacks provide little damage, while waiting for the gauge to recharge allows for full strength attacks. The party can use 8 different types of weapons such as swords, spears, whips or boomerangs, which can be changed at any time. The game uses the innovative “Ring Command” menu system for customising equipment, using items and casting magic spells, which helps to keep the player involved in the action. A notable feature of Secret of Mana is the ability to play the quest with 3 players, as each player can take control of a character. It is a very enjoyable experience battle monsters and sharing the journey with some friends.
Secret of Mana’s soundtrack is enchanting and inviting. It fleshes out the bright and colourful world and seems to mix in with the visuals effortlessly. The music helps to set the mood, from the uplifting “What the Forest Taught Me” to the urgency of “Into the Thick of It”. There is a sense of innocence in Secret of Mana and the soundtrack perfectly reinforces it.
Secret of Mana provided an innovative and memorable experience when it was first released. If you long to play an RPG that will take you back to the times when you daydreamed of adventure all day, then you should play Secret of Mana.