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User Reviews

Like RPG's? This'll cook your bacon. Kain Ceverus (34) 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars
A great RPG with classic game play and original aspects Bregalad (969) 4.8 Stars4.8 Stars4.8 Stars4.8 Stars4.8 Stars
Bottom line: Golden Sun is the best handheld RPG ever, and one of the greatest of all time. pocketgamer2000 (22) 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars
One of the best original RPGs on the GBA. Lucas Schippers (59) unrated
A fantastic old school RPG that demonstrates the power of the Gameboy Advance Ryu (56) 4.8 Stars4.8 Stars4.8 Stars4.8 Stars4.8 Stars

Our Users Say

Category Description User Score
Gameplay How well the game mechanics work and the game plays. 3.9
Graphics The visual quality of the game 4.2
Personal Slant A personal rating of the game, regardless of other attributes 3.9
Sound / Music The quality of the sound effects and/or music composition 3.8
Story / Presentation The main creative ideas in the game and how well they are executed. This rating is used for every game except compilations and special editions which don't have unique game content not available in a standalone game or DLC. 3.7
Overall User Score (84 votes) 3.9

Critic Reviews

MobyRanks are listed below. You can read here for more information about MobyRank.
Gaming Age (Apr 25, 2003)
The Golden Sun series is hands down the best new series that has come out in the last five years. If I only had one word to describe the Golden Sun series that one word would be, epic. The Golden Sun saga breathes life back into the RPG genre. With a pleasant mix of a fantastic storyline, great character development, good pacing of action and adventure, pleasing graphics, and challenging, but fun puzzles, makes Golden Sun practically the ?dream? game for fans of the RPG genre.
Snackbar-Games.com (Jan 29, 2006)
Even so, this is one of the greatest games I have ever played, and I am really looking forward to buying The Lost Age. The sole flaw was the dual cartridge game. Otherwise, it was perfect. The puzzles were the proper difficulty, the game flowed smoothly, and I never felt like I was spending time playing just to level up. I was always playing with a goal in mind, instead of just mindless leveling. I loved this game, and for $20, I recommend it to every Game Boy owner out there.
The Next Level (USA) (Feb 28, 2002)
If you have a Game Boy Advance, a penchant for RPGs, and you want to get an all-around quality package, Golden Sun is the game for you. It has a lot of elements of old, from challenge to gameplay, plus a few new aspects you would've never witnessed during the 16-bit days. As the first RPG for GBA and Camelot's first outing in the genre, I can't possibly complain.
UOL Jogos (Feb 01, 2002)
No fim das contas, Golden Sun nĂŁo tenta revolucionar o gĂȘnero, nem pretende oferecer algo inĂ©dito - mas resgata com perfeição tudo aquilo que fascinou os jogadores de outrora. E tudo isso exibindo alguns dos melhores grĂĄficos e trilha sonora jĂĄ vistos no Game Boy Advance.
GamePro (US) (Nov 14, 2001)
Golden Sun’s Psynergy system is probably the game’s coolest feature, not just because it looks great in battle, but because of the way it actually works within the world. In Golden Sun, magic isn’t just used for curing people, escaping from dungeons, and hurling fireballs at unruly slimes Here, Psynergy is used for such tasks as moving rocks, manipulating the environment, grabbing distinct objects, and reading the minds of the people you meet (each and every character in Golden Sun has inner thoughts aside from what they’re willing to speak). All of these abilities are worked seamlessly into the world’s puzzles, both the major ones and the plethora of challenging and well-constructed optional riddles.
Nintendojo (2001)
Golden Sun brings back many fond memories. I was able to practically revisit all my favorite experiences on the SNES with an even more impressive GBA game. Whether it be through design, story, or gameplay-– this solid title competes with some of the bigger titles we’ve played on some next generation systems. And so, Golden Sun comes across as a highly recommended title for anyone who enjoys an epic story and a challenge. Disappointment is not an option.
IGN (Nov 09, 2001)
I've stayed away from role-playing games due to my general distaste for the whole "wander around, get into a random battle, win battle, wander around, random battle, etc." design. And Golden Sun does rely heavily on the random battles, which can get annoying especially when you're trying to advance forward without weakening your party members. But even with these unavoidable breaks in the exploration, I think that this game is an absolutely fantastic Game Boy Advance title and one of the top games for the system released so far.
DarkZero (Sep 27, 2005)
Overall, a tremendous and exceptionally high quality RPG for the GBA. and today it still retains the unrivalled position of the best of the best (including Pokemon). Golden Sun’s graphics are unparalleled as is its musical score. If only Pokemon would have utilised the same graphics engine, rather than a slightly updated Game Boy engine. The world of Weyard is an epic land to explore, and hopefully, you will take up the challenge to save it from certain ruin.
NintendoWorldReport (Nov 24, 2001)
Golden Sun is probably one of the better games to come out this year. With an intriguing battle system, gorgeous graphics, delightful music and a captivating world to explore, this is a return to the renaissance that many saw in the years of the Super Famicom. Here, we have an epic handheld game that rivals console contemporaries. Do not miss out on this game: it is more than worth the price you'll pay for it. Camelot has created an incredible title, one that both RPG fanatics (such as myself) and beginners can cherish. You won't be disappointed.
PGNx Media (Oct 24, 2002)
Graphic and sound are what takes the game to a new level of the "Oh my god, how the hell did they do that on a handheld game". I rarely give out a ten on graphics, but considering the system, I simply can't deny Golden Sun. This is simply because theses graphics and sound can go toe to toe with consul games. With simply amazing graphics in games, and breathtaking graphics in battle, your jaw will be on the floor for a while.
RPGFan (Jan 28, 2002)
Golden Sun is a worthwhile effort from Camelot and also proof that they have worked out the flaws in their earlier attempt at a traditional RPG, Beyond The Beyond. For you handheld RPG lovers out there, you’d do yourselves a favor to get this tiny portable gem before your Game Boy Advances begin to get dusty from its lack of decent RPGs.
Gamezone (Germany) (Nov 09, 2001)
Dieses wunderschöne Rollenspiel fĂŒr den GBA ist definitiv der beste Vertreter seines Genres auf dem GBA. Es gibt auch noch nicht so viele Rollenspiele auf diesem System, aber Golden Sun kann sich auch locker mit den guten RPGÂŽs auf dem SNES messen. Die Grafik hat einen Touch von Seiken Densetsu 3 kann aber mit vielen liebevollen Details noch mehr ĂŒberzeugen. Die Figuren und Monster sind allesamt vorgerendert, wie man es z.B. von Killer Instinct her kennt.
RPGFan (Dec 20, 2001)
While I recommend any fan of traditional RPGs get this game, I must warn you that you will be left hanging at the end, so please be prepared to be digitally blue-balled by Camelot. Let's just hope they bring out the sequel
GameSpy (Dec, 2001)
For RPG lovers, there really isn't a single reason not to rush out and buy Golden Sun immediately. It's a truly topnotch example of the genre, and by far the best console role-playing game released in a long time. Taking all the familiar, classic elements of the genre, this adventure succeeds thanks to an impeccable eye on refined gameplay, style, and constantly engaging quests to complete and characters to meet. With Advance Wars, Warioland 4, and now Golden Sun, Nintendo is rapidly making the Game Boy Advance into one of the best systems on the market.
Playmag (Apr, 2002)
Si vous voulez jouer des dizaines d'heures avec une équipe de 4 personnages, quatre systÚmes de magie, des combats aléatoires fendarts et la possibilité de jouer en link, foncez !
Consoles Plus (Jan, 2002)
Pour son premier RPG traditionnel sur GBA, Camelot met la barre haut. Golden Sun est un grand jeu. Indispensable Ă  tous les possesseurs de GBA.
Portable Review (Nov 12, 2005)
Golden Sun does much to revive the dying art of menu-based RPGs. This is what many older gamers grew up on during the early days of gaming, and has somewhat diminished with the popularization of action and tactical RPGs. It is a fun game, with about 20 to 25 hours of gameplay under its hood (I think I clocked in at about 22). Not too shabby for something you can fit in your pocket.
Pixel-Heroes.de (Aug, 2010)
Fazit: Golden Sun ist trotz der linearen Handlung bis heute einer meiner Top-Favoriten im Bereich der Rollenspiele. Aus diesem Grund vergebe ich - wenn auch nur SEHR knapp an der Höchstwertung vorbei - neun von zehn möglichen Punkten.
Nintendo Life (Jun 03, 2010)
There's no denying that Golden Sun is still one of the best original portable RPG titles ever created and a true testament to what can be accomplished when developers take the time to truly stretch the limits of what portable gaming has to offer. Not only do you get to watch an absolutely epic storyline unfold in front of you, but you also get to take on the game's wide range of monsters using one of the most strategic, albeit fairly traditional, turn-based combat systems ever to grace an RPG, portable or console. Toss in some mind-bending puzzles to solve along with a host of unique gameplay mechanics and what you have is one of the most enjoyable RPG experiences you're ever likely to encounter and a game no RPG fan should miss.
My only complaints are that the search button is the same button that brings up your command icons, and the battles are a little too easy. However, the good far outweighs the bad in this phenomenal GBA release. Easily the best original RPG on the GBA, but not just because it’s the only one!
Between delivering astounding visual and audio work as well as an interesting story, one may think Golden Sun to be an almost perfect adventure. However, with slightly clichd plot moments and a severely dated battle system, Golden Sun can't QUITE seem to shake the 'been there, done that' feeling that plagues so many 2-D adventures.
Armchair Empire, The (Dec 08, 2001)
Overall, this is the RPG that every GBA owner has been waiting for. Beyond the traditional pleasures of Role Playing Games, Golden Sun is a particularly pleasant backward glance at the reason why we all loved them pre-FFVII. It shines not only because its portable -- it’s the same kind of game that kept us glued to the television way back when and it still would.
Eurogamer.net (UK) (Feb 21, 2002)
As far as handheld RPGs go, this is probably the pinnacle thus far. Beating Breath of Fire hands down in terms of graphics, presentation, sound and gameplay, the only thing one might find is that the game is over somewhat quickly. Spaced out over a few weeks of standard GBA play the average gamer will have no complaints, and the 'save anywhere' feature is a comfort for commuters, but going at it like a bat out of hell I managed to scramble through the game in just two days. It was certainly an awesome experience though, and if you have the stomach for random encounters you should seek this game out on its release and play it to death, if only because we need to encourage more of this sort of behaviour from Nintendo.
Cubed3 (Feb 03, 2003)
Very, very impressive. But those that have played Camelot’s previous games should have expected no less since the company has a lot of experience behind it. This is an absorbing RPG that, although at times frustrating, will keep you hooked right until the final credits roll. With Golden Sun: The Lost Age due for later this year, the time is definitely ripe to pick this up.
Thunderbolt Games (Mar 23, 2005)
Golden Sun features top-notch graphics with a colorful, vibrant world filled with characters that are very well detailed. The world map is a bit grainy but it really doesn’t detract and once its size is considered it’s instantly forgiven. The towns are all a little small and clustered, but finding your way around isn’t too tricky at all. It’s during battles though that the graphics are really shown off.
While in some ways Golden Sun is generic, it makes up for it with great characters, a good storyline, great graphics, superb audio, and a fun battle system. You should be able to get this game rather cheaply, considering it is an older game. It should be a steal, because I got about 30 hours of gameplay in. Watch out Square, you aren't the only ones who know how to make a good RPG.
Gaming Target (Mar 29, 2002)
Finally, Golden Sun has a multiplayer mode. A feature not found in most RPG games. With a friend, two copies of Golden Sun, an extra Game Boy Advance, and a multiplayer link, you can load up your saved game and use your team of characters in a one on one battle to see who is really the better champion. . Even without a friend you can still enter the multiplayer mode alone and use your saved party against the game's AI monsters for a self-test of challenge.
RPGFan (Apr 26, 2003)
Golden Sun, along with its sequel The Lost Age, is by far the best RPG yet released on Nintendo’s Game Boy Advance, as well as the first original hand-held RPG to match current console RPGs in overall quality. If you own a GBA, don’t miss out on this one.
Golden Sun is a very good RPG for Game Boy Advance, with only relatively minor appropriateness issues. The production values are absolutely top notch; it's a flawless game experience in a lot of ways. It's certainly not the best RPG I have ever played or anything like that, but it's a very good, solid adventure with many common (and some unique) RPG elements. If the appropriateness issues are not showstoppers and you don't mind the possibility of buying both this game and the sequel Golden Sun: The Lost Age to get the complete story, it's a worthy addition to any RPG lover's library.
GameSpot (Nov 12, 2001)
Golden Sun holds its own against most full-sized console games. While the quest could be longer, the time spent in it is nearly all quality time--it has less shameless filler than other RPGs. The game offers tight graphics, polished gameplay, and a solid story, which provide a great showcase for the GBA. You'll be left wanting more, and judging by the game's ending, we may see a sequel. Fans of RPGs owe it to themselves to pick up Golden Sun.
Wer mit den Story-SchwĂ€chen und den vielen zufallsbasierten KĂ€mpfen leben kann, bekommt ein optisch wie akustisch in höchstem Maße ansprechendes Rollenspiel geboten. Nach Jahren der RollenspieldĂŒrre ist Golden Sun zwar nicht der erhoffte Klassikerkandidat geworden, aber fĂŒr einen Neuanfang ist der Start gar nicht mal schlecht Rollenspielfans mit einem Faible fĂŒr den SNES-Knuddel-Look dĂŒrfen jedenfalls bedenkenlos zugreifen.
Equipment and shopping are easily done, and the menus are quite helpful. Battle Mode either lets you compete in a survival-type scenario in endless fights, or match up against human players. I had a blast with Golden Sun. Its greatness even exceeds the nostalgia I felt for Breath of Fire's GBA port. We have a new ruler in the GBA RPG realm.
Jeuxvideo.com (Feb 21, 2002)
Le RPG tant attendu de la GBA tient toutes ses promesses, et nous arrive dans une version intĂ©gralement traduite en français. La qualitĂ© de la rĂ©alisation ne trouve son Ă©gal qu'Ă  travers la richesse du gameplay, mĂȘme si l'ambiance du jeu demeure globalement un peu naĂŻve.
Game Critics (Mar 27, 2002)
Ultimately, Golden Sun works because of the little things—a fact that makes it a refreshing gaming experience in this day and age where everyone seems bent on completely overhauling the basic tenets of what makes a good game. Titles like Golden Sun and Capcoms Maximo nicely demonstrate that while systems have gotten more advanced, the core gameplay elements that make games fun still apply. Innovation is nice, but if the games arent fun, whats the point? Golden Sun might not have all the bells and whistles of todays console RPGs, but it is certainly a fun title—and at the end of the day, thats all that really matters.
Retro Gamer (Mar 02, 2006)
We've actually included both titles here, because it's really just one big adventure that's been spliced across two cartridges. While they're not as good as Camelot's earlier hits, both titles serve as a great introduction to the RPG market thanks to their relatively straightforward combat systems, enjoyable storylines and the many elemental familiars you're able to collect. Both games are very involving however, and will take an absolute age to complete. Definitely for long journeys.
RPGamer (Jun 14, 2009)
What makes Golden Sun such a great game isn't any one aspect, but rather the fact that it's a complete package. Solid combat, terrific level design, an enjoyable story, attractive visuals, and a catchy soundtrack; each contribute something to the overall experience, and the result is a game that is hard to put down. This first installment lasts roughly twenty to thirty hours, and shouldn't pose too much challenge for most RPGamers, though some of the puzzles might make you scratch your noodle. Golden Sun is one of the brighter stars available on the Game Boy Advance, and is a game everyone should try to experience.
RPGamer (2001)
Golden Sun is a good game in many regards, and as fun a title as you'll find on the Game Boy Advance. If you enjoy a good long car trip every so often, this title would make a great travelling companion.
GamesAreFun.com (GAF) (Jan 27, 2005)
Golden Sun is the perfect example of a purchase-worthy role playing title. It breaks the mold in ways, while still keeping us happy with what we've come to expect from good RPGs. In the end, Golden Sun is one of the Game Boy Advance's best titles.
Gamestyle (Aug 08, 2006)
Golden Sun finishes not as terribly long after its beginning as you might have hoped. Average playtime obviously depends on how far out of your way you go to find everything it has to offer. And there is a lot there, make no mistake. But once it is over and the game's map has been fully coloured in - its final boss thwarted - the disappointment dawns. However, Golden Sun does not 'end' here: questions remain unanswered, friends remain unrescued, and a threat remains unsecured. As our heroes rejoice in the completion of one adventure, their friends are about to attempt (or continue upon) another - though you wouldn't necessarily feel 'cheated' by such an abrupt ending had the story ended well. If it's closure you're after, you'll just have to stick around and wait...
Legendra (Apr 19, 2003)
VoilĂ , je crois avoir tout dit sur ce merveilleux jeu. Pour ma part, je trouve qu'il est le meilleur RPG de la Game Boy Advance. Je tiens aussi Ă  signaler qu'il est entiĂšrement traduit en français, ce qui est vraiment bien surtout que la traduction est loin d'ĂȘtre mauvaise mĂȘme si les dialogues sont un peu niais. Pour conclure, un achat plus qu'indispensable!
Bordersdown (Dec, 2004)
All in all, Golden Sun is a great buy and will probably be renowned as a classic in the time to come, it will probably only be truly surpassed when the sequel comes out much later this year. You'd be missing out on quite a game if you didn't buy it. A large range of sub quests is also available, and heaps of secrets and puzzles, especially when it comes to catching those elusive Djinn. So if you're willing to stick by it while you get through those few annoying pieces, then you've got a great title in your hands.
Game Critics (Oct 02, 2002)
Those epiphanies may just be part of coming back to traditional, non-cutting edge RPGs. Even when sitting in a place like your old bedroom, you remember how much fun you once had in there. But although you know you'll probably never capture as much enjoyment from it now than you did then, it's still nice to come back.
NintendoWorldReport (Mar 07, 2002)
Ultimately, Golden Sun is a technically beautiful game whose massive potential is largely wasted due to shallow gameplay and an awful story. It’s the kind of game that you want to like, but in the end its flaws just become too glaring to ignore. I actually lost all desire to play at one point, and despite many efforts to get back into it and finish the quest, I probably never will see the ending. And I honestly don’t care anymore. This game is quite adequate for inexperienced or younger RPG players, but serious fans of the genre have come to expect far more.
RPG Kingdom (Dec 10, 2006)
Il est considĂ©rĂ© comme une rĂ©fĂ©rence sur GBA et le restera sĂ»rement jusqu'Ă  la fin de la console (un jour peut-ĂȘtre...). Bien que le scĂ©nario soit, Ă  mon avis, le gros point noir du soft avec la durĂ©e de vie minimaliste, il n'en reste pas moins un jeu tout Ă  fait plaisant Ă  faire au moins une fois afin de se lancer dans The Lost Age aussitĂŽt aprĂšs.
GameCola.net (May, 2004)
I said before that this game is a lot like Chrono Trigger. It is. This game also seems to follow the same credo s CT: style over substance. The creators didn't write a good plot or any good characters or even attempt to not rip off the FF series so blatantly. They just tried to make it look good, and even if it didn't look so great, people would still buy it and like it. They knew the buyers would rationalize their decision by saying things like "Oh, the controls are top notch!" or "I kinda like the music." or "Ooh, pretty summons."

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