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Shining Force

aka: Shining Force: The Legacy of Great Intention
Moby ID: 6819
Genesis Specs
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Description official descriptions

In a wondrous land perhaps not so far from our world, a strange and terrible series of events took place. The powers of darkness, led by Dark Dragon, fought for control of the world of Rune. Legendary warriors of light fought them with the ancient and modern weapons of the time, and drove Dark Dragon into another dimension. But Dark Dragon vowed that in a thousand years he would be able to break through the inter-dimensional barrier, back into this world.

A thousand years of peace and tranquility passed. The people of the world were happy to live their lives in contentment, able to spend time rediscovering the magical and technological wonders destroyed by Dark Dragon and using them to benefit all people. But the kingdom of Runefaust has begun a massive attack of the kingdoms of Rune - intending to help Dark Dragon return to this world. A small band of warriors has been sent out on a dangerous journey to fight against the dark forces of Runefaust.

Shining Force is a tactical role-playing game. As the player character makes his way through the lands of Rune, he is joined by other warriors who wish to stop the forces of Runefaust. Each warrior has their own strengths and weaknesses. As the player progresses through the game the characters gain new weapons and spells.


  • シャイニング・フォース ~神々の遺産~ - Japanese spelling

Groups +



Credits (Genesis version)

30 People (27 developers, 3 thanks) · View all



Average score: 84% (based on 30 ratings)


Average score: 3.8 out of 5 (based on 56 ratings with 3 reviews)

My personal favorite Sega Genesis game

The Good
A unique RPG that kept me playing for hours, possibly days. Shining Force dared to be different from its contemporary RPGs (Dragon Warrior, Final Fantasy, etc) by adding tactical movement to the battles. Unlike Final Fantasy or Dragon Warrior where a battle takes place between two to five characters the battles in with set character placement, Shining Force battles span a whole map. The battles are almost chess like. You must be smart in moving your heavy hitters, long range attackers, mages, healers, and mostly the leader of you party (the main character) which the death of results in the automatic loss of the battle. The movement of the members of your party is as important as how strong your characters are. Also your party grows to about 60 people of which you can only have about twelve active at a time (numbers may be incorrect). Therefore you must choose the best of your men/women/its to fight. The cartoon graphics are spectacular for that time as well.

The Bad
Not much. My only complaint is that the save ability on my cartridge doesn't work anymore. Also, you can only name the main character. It would've been more fun to be able to name all of your party as you recruit them.

The Bottom Line
Probably one of my top ten favorite games of all time. If your looking for a fun loving RPG that gives you a pretty good challenge, I'd recommend it.

Genesis · by Ryan Connely (7) · 2006

One of the best RPGs, one of the best games

The Good
So I guess this was quite new, having a small army of characters, rather than a 3-4 character squad e.g the Dragon Warrior, Final Fantasy and Phantasy Star games and Shining in the Darkness(to which Shining Force is a follow up) and battles fought like chess, with an imaginary grid(like Nintendo's Fire Emblem, the first in the series released April 1990).

I think in a lot of ways the game is child-friendly, the cute graphics and music and the simplistic story. But there are a lot of good, emotional highs and lows in the story and the battles are often really close fought with the player often on the brink of losing. I like the way the story is divided into chapters like a book. I loved the recruiting too, meeting new and interesting characters who join Shining Force as part of the story or finding hidden or semi-hidden characters to recruit and improve your chances in battle. Like other RPGs, luck is a fairly big part of the battles in this game i.e if you're lucky you'll get in two hits instead of one or one extra hard hit, or you'll evade the enemy's attack. It can make the game sometimes feel out of your hands and I think the good side of that is, it's like a movie or story-telling.

The Bad
As mentioned, the story is a bit simplistic and doesn't always make sense, but I don't feel that hurts the game all that much. I think it's hurt more by how demanding it is on the battlefields. The close fought battles help the game a lot, but sometimes your Shining Force is just too disadvantaged, forcing you to "grind" to get strong enough. I think by the early '90s, game developers were trying to move RPGs away from the boredom of grinding, which really interrupts the flow of the story.

The Bottom Line
One of the best games ever and of course one of the best RPGs(including RPG hybrids). It's worth the effort of completing at least once.

Genesis · by Andrew Fisher (697) · 2018

Incredible Game

The Good
The plot is great, the graphics are good, and it has great gameplay.

The Bad
This game was absolutely perfect, but It has a couple of flaws like the graphics could be better, and The music could be a little better.

The Bottom Line
Fun anyday.

Genesis · by Wesley Salisbury (1) · 2004


Subject By Date
Land effect Donatello (466) Nov 15, 2008



In July of 2004 etoychest.org released an article detailing the "Best Strategy RPGs Of All Time". This article did not contain any mention of Shining Force, or its sequels. After the article was Slashdotted the user community outcry about the absence of Shining Force was so great that eToychest.org actually retracted the article.


  • Retro Gamer
    • September 2004 (Issue #8) – #86 Best Game Of All Time (Readers' Vote)


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Related Games

Shining Force: The Sword of Hajya
Released 1993 on Game Gear, 2003 on Palm OS, 2013 on Nintendo 3DS
Shining Force II
Released 1993 on Genesis, 2008 on Wii, 2011 on Windows...
Farland Story: Kamigami no Isan
Released 1995 on PC-98
Shining Force III: Premium Disc
Released 1998 on SEGA Saturn
Shining Force Gaiden
Released 1992 on Game Gear, 2013 on Nintendo 3DS
Shining Force: Resurrection of the Dark Dragon
Released 2004 on Game Boy Advance, 2016 on Wii U
Shining Force Gaiden: Final Conflict
Released 1995 on Game Gear, 2014 on Nintendo 3DS
Shining in the Darkness
Released 1991 on Genesis, 2011 on Windows, 2018 on Linux...
Ruin: Kami no Isan
Released 1993 on TurboGrafx CD

Related Sites +

  • Shrine at RPGClassics
    Fansite containing a walkthrough and detailed information about characters, monsters, and other items pertaining to the game (English)

Identifiers +

  • MobyGames ID: 6819
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Are you familiar with this game? Help document and preserve this entry in video game history! If your contribution is approved, you will earn points and be credited as a contributor.

Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Attila.

Windows added by GTramp. Nintendo Switch added by Kam1Kaz3NL77. iPhone added by Sciere. Macintosh, Linux added by Foxhack. Wii added by gamewarrior.

Additional contributors: Edward Beezy, LepricahnsGold, j.raido 【雷堂嬢太朗】, Trypticon, Patrick Bregger, Narushima.

Game added June 27, 2002. Last modified April 10, 2024.