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Description

Long ago, people lived in harmony with the natural world and used the power of Mana to help their nations grow. But when evil forces took control of the Mana Fortress, seeking to use it to conquer the world, a terrible war began which destroyed much of civilization but brought peace to the world once more. Over the long years, the events of the past became but legends to the new generations of humans. But history repeats itself...

One day while exploring a forbidden valley near his village, a young boy finds a rusty sword stuck in a stone. He does not realize that this is the Mana sword of legend, used in the great war of the past. By drawing the sword, the boy unwittingly summons hordes of monsters, and is expelled from his village for breaking the ancient taboo. A mysterious knight Jema who is passing through the area recognizes the sword and gives him instructions for the future. First, he must repair the sword, and then, with its help, take control of the Mana seeds which can be found hidden around the world to prevent them from falling into evil hands.

Secret of Mana is an action RPG, featuring real-time hack-and-slash style combat, in which up to two computer-controlled companions can accompany you. The protagonist has a stamina gauge: the more stamina he has, the more powerful his strike is. The player also has access to a growing arsenal of spells with various effects. It is possible to upgrade weapons, armor, and magic to higher levels.

Screenshots

Secret of Mana SNES In the basement, looking for some goodies
Secret of Mana SNES Boss battle
Secret of Mana SNES The story
Secret of Mana SNES Fighting some nasty things among the bushes

Alternate Titles

  • "聖剣伝説2" -- Japanese spelling
  • "Seiken Densetsu 2" -- Japanese title

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

A real gem from Squaresoft, it's a shame it has so many technical glitchies Bregalad (938) 3.67 Stars3.67 Stars3.67 Stars3.67 Stars3.67 Stars
A great early Action RPG Idkbutlike2 (23) 4.67 Stars4.67 Stars4.67 Stars4.67 Stars4.67 Stars
Edible at best. Pixelspeech (949) 2 Stars2 Stars2 Stars2 Stars2 Stars
Great Game, one of the best Scott G (728) 4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars

Critic Reviews

ASM (Aktueller Software Markt) Jan, 1994 12 out of 12 100
Nintendo Master 2008 9.8 out of 10 98
Nintendo Land Sep 13, 2003 93 out of 100 93
Nintendo Magazine System UK Jan, 1994 93 out of 100 93
VicioJuegos.com Nov 17, 2012 91 out of 100 91
Edge Nov 25, 1993 9 out of 10 90
RPGFan Feb 22, 1999 90 out of 100 90
GamePro (US) Dec, 1993 4.5 out of 5 90
Legendra 2001 4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars 80
GameCola.net Sep, 2002 7.4 out of 10 74

Forums

Topic # Posts Last Post
So what else has changed? 4 Cor 13 (174144)
Nov 06, 2011

Trivia

1001 Video Games

The SNES version of Secret of Mana appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.

Development

One of the first games announced for the then-announced CD-ROM addon for the SNES. Nintendo eventually gave up trying to get the peripheral off the ground after the deal with Phillips to make the drive fell flat. Square eventually released a tooled-down version, which pushed the SNES hardware constantly (hence the slowdown and lack of multiple enemies onscreen), and overall left Square bitter for having to go through the process of downgrading its game. This probably was one of the reasons Square decided to bail on Nintendo (and its then-upcoming N64 console) and take its multimillion seller, Final Fantasy VII, with it (which was first announced for the N64).

Ironically, Square signed the deal to bring the game to the PlayStation with Sony, which was the original partner for the SNES CD drive, but was publicly stabbed in the back by Nintendo with the Phillips deal. The CD drive technology that Sony had been working on for the SNES, was then used to create the PlayStation itself.

Enemies

Due to technical limitations, only three enemies can ever be on the screen at one time. Sneaky players can use this to their advantage and keep 'easy' enemies alive to block the spawning of more powerful ones. The merchant cat Neko, is also affected by this and may not always appear during busy combat.

Killroy

In the original Japanese version, Killroy has a chainsaw when fighting him the second time. In all Western versions, he is just a re-coloured version of the first encounter.

Multiplayer

Secret of Mana is quite possibly the first RPG game to support 3 Players. It is certainly the only one on SNES that does (along with it's sequel, which was never officially translated). A multitap is required for the third player.

Slime

The Slime bosses are the trickiest enemies in the game, not because they're difficult, but because they're so buggy. When fighting one of these bosses it's possible to slow the framerate to a crawl, freeze the game or in extreme cases, wipe the contents from your saved battery backup.

Awards

  • FLUX Magazine
    • Issue #4 - #40 in the "Top 100 Video Games of All-Time" list
  • Game Informer
    • August 2001 (Issue #100) - #77 in the "Top 100 Games of All Time" poll
  • GamePro
    • Vol. 6, Issue 2 - Role-Playing Game of the Year 1993
  • Retro Gamer
    • September 2004 (Issue #8) – #74 Best Game Of All Time (Readers' Vote)
Information also contributed by Big John WV, CaptainCanuck, PCGamer77 and WildKart

Related Web Sites

Cor 13 (174144) added Secret of Mana (SNES) on Jun 07, 2002
Other platforms contributed by Michael Cassidy (16499), Sciere (361918) and gamewarrior (5060)