Avalon Code Reviews (Nintendo DS)
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IGN (Mar 06, 2009)
Avalon Code offers a unique experience among action RPGs. Capturing people and objects in the Book of Prophecy and playing with their attributes is a compelling mechanic you won't find anywhere else. The interface isn't perfect, but it's definitely engaging. Avalon Code is also paced very well, and doles out new abilities to the player at regular intervals over its 20+ hours. Players looking for a cinematic DS experience will find it here. Now that the groundwork has been laid, let's hope for a sequel that refines the interface.
RPGFan (Mar 31, 2009)
Although Avalon Code would be without a niche had it not included the Book of Prophecy, the package as a whole is one full of variety and enjoyment. Over the course of its eleven chapters, Avalon Code gives players the chance to rewrite the current world and make a new one with a cache of distractions to bolster the already unique game: romances, mini-games, item collection, puzzles, and even post-game content. With more attention to story elements, a better translation, and more polish overall, Avalon Code would have been a classic. For DS RPG fans, however, it is still a must read... er, play.
Jeuxvideo.com (Mar 23, 2010)
Malgré un début de jeu déroutant, pour ne pas dire rebutant, Avalon Code voit son potentiel ludique augmenter de façon exponentielle à mesure qu'on apprend à se familiariser avec ses innombrables subtilités. Bien plus qu'un simple action/RPG, ce titre puise son originalité dans les possibilités illimitées offertes par le livre des prophéties, véritable debug mode nous permettant de modifier les codes de tous les éléments du jeu pour les ajuster à notre convenance. Une très bonne surprise qui n'est entachée que par quelques soucis d'ergonomie liés au stockages des codes.
Modojo (Apr 01, 2009)
If you're looking for the next step in the role-playing genre and don't mind doing a little work, open up the book and crack the Code. You won't regret it.
Cheat Code Central (2009)
Simultaneously walking the beaten path and wildly straying from it, Matrix Software has created a diverse action-RPG that’s very satisfying. The blend of both familiar and completely new gameplay elements in Avalon Code improves the experience rather than detracting from it. The game’s originality and its problems stem from the unique Book of Prophecy system, yet the issues are by no means crippling. With additional work to shore-up some of the looser aspects of the design and a little tweaking to nail the formula just right, another go around with a stronger sequel would be a greatly welcomed.
GameZone (Mar 31, 2009)
Sure, dealing with the interface can be irritating. That doesn’t change the fact that Avalon Code is as unique and satisfying a game as your likely to find on the DS, or any system for that matter. If you’re willing to put up with a little frustration to experience one of the most original RPGs in recent memory, then Avalon Code is for you.
For all the mediocrity that can be said about Avalon Code, the few truly outstanding things do a lot to help the game. The Book of Prophecy opens some exciting doors for the player; rearranging codes is fun and strategic and the interactive endgame reward makes the experience quite rewarding, even though the story never really achieves its potential. Furthermore, Avalon Code will take about 20 to 30 hours to complete and can become a decent enough time sink for players who really get a kick out of all the Book of Prophecy has to offer. So, while it might not be the best RPG on the DS, Avalon Code offers enough compelling ideas to standout and warrant at least a closer look.
4Players.de (Mar 18, 2010)
Trotz des interessanten Szenarios um das Archivieren erhaltenswürdiger Dinge in einer dem Untergang geweihten Welt, kocht Avalon Code erzählerisch leider auf Sparflamme. Das originelle Sammeln, Umschichten und Ausnutzen eingescannter Attribute als Puzzleteile wirkt hingegen angenehm frisch und motivierend: Man kann Gegner ihrer Stärken berauben, um damit noch bessere Waffen zu kreieren oder Geschenke für die Dorfbewohner basteln - es gibt viel zu tun und zu entdecken. Die Kämpfe in Zelda-Manier gehen gut von der Hand, die als gewöhnungsbedürftige Kampf-, Geschicklichkeits- und Puzzle-Parcours angelegten Dungeons halten trotz Abnutzungserscheinungen ein paar nette Herausforderungen parat und das Jonglieren von Gegnern bis in die Stratosphäre ist ein genauso witziger wie lohnender Zeitvertreib. Ambitionierte Jäger und Sammler, die gerne herum tüfteln, kommen jedenfalls auf ihre Kosten.
Jeuxvideo.fr (Apr 06, 2010)
Avalon Code est un titre agréable à parcourir, mais pour cela il faut réussir à passer le cap des premières heures de jeu et le côté déstabilisant de son approche du RPG nippon. Mais il recèle une très grande richesse qui apporte toujours un petit quelque chose au joueur. Le cœur du jeu se situe bien entendu dans les manipulations des codes du Livre des Prophéties. Si l'ergonomie n'est pas le point fort de ce dernier, il n'en demeure pas moins que les possibilités offertes sont tellement importantes que l'on joue les apprentis alchimistes en tentant tout un tas d'approches différentes avec plaisir. Si vous voulez de l'action et uniquement de l'action, passez votre chemin, Avalon Code n'est pas pour vous. Le titre se destine à ceux qui aiment prendre leur temps de savourer l'aventure, de s'intéresser aux personnages, de jouer avec les codes. De plus, la mort n'est pas une fin dans le jeu même si elle survient régulièrement.
Worth Playing (Mar 28, 2009)
Although it's a solid new IP on the DS, the control issue keeps Avalon Code from being something great. It's still decent and definitely worth checking out for RPG fans, but anyone who's not a big fan of the genre is going to get frustrated with the controls and code system. If you have an interest in action RPGs, Avalon Code might be worth your time, but everyone else should rent it and see how the controls work out for them.
The terrific exploration and experimentation-driven gameplay manages to hold up in spite of these things. The game itself is also fairly lengthy for a handheld title, clocking it at roughly thirty hours with plenty of replay potential. In addition, after the closing credits, the player can continue playing and explore the world of his own volition. Avalon Code is certainly not the greatest RPG available for the DS, but at the same time it is far more than a simple Zelda clone.
Game Informer Magazine (May, 2009)
When you smack someone in the face with a book in real life, everyone gets a good laugh. In Avalon Code, this act allows you to index and rearrange the genetic code of any person, monster, or weapon. The clever mechanic gives you control over many aspects of the world; you can use your book to add an “ill” element to a monster’s code to make it weaker, or add a “fire” element to your sword to give it new powers. While this kind of agency is refreshing, the gameplay isn’t nearly as novel. Sluggish combat, unimaginative objectives, and a plodding story are constant roadblocks to enjoying the unique and entertaining aspects of Avalon Code. Collecting codes and manipulating them is engaging, but the rest of the experience is merely functional.
Thunderbolt Games (Apr 28, 2009)
But while Avalon Code has some great ideas, the execution is horribly, horribly flawed. The Book of Prophecy is poorly designed; it turns an innovative concept into an annoying, tedious, headache-inducing chore. The bland challenges and cluttered menus don’t help much, either. It’s a shame to see a game with so much potential screw itself over. Here’s hoping the new world offers something better.
Nintendo Life (Apr 08, 2010)
Avalon Code isn't by any means a bad game. It's got some stunning visuals, comprises one of the most inventive battle systems to feature in an RPG and has plenty of depth throughout its lengthy duration. We also found the towns to be charming to visit and although none of the characters are deep, it's nice to encounter them on your journey. Unfortunately the game mechanics revolving around the Book of Prophecy are deeply flawed, making it frustrating to participate in battle when there are reams of pages to scroll through just to reach an important element and let down what could be an essential purchase. Those prepared to persevere with the game's flaws will find there is plenty of potential here but there are better experiences to be found elsewhere.
GamesRadar (Mar 31, 2009)
The story itself, though, mostly succeeds. There's just enough variance to remain engaging and entertaining, although later chapters tend to regress back into default RPG tropes, which we won't spoil here. Similar to the Crystal Chronicles series, Avalon Code's art design is full of whimsy with skillfully executed cutscenes. Avalon Code's story props up the experience even if the game's combat feels punishing, bordering on unfair, and if you're an old school RPG scholar this one deserves some study.
NintendoWorldReport (May 16, 2009)
Avalon Code has high production values and heart, but element-swapping really saps the fun out of the experience. There are better RPGs out there.
1UP (Mar 10, 2009)
As with so many boldly innovative games, Avalon proves that the main downside to new and untested ideas is that they've yet to be refined into something that works smoothly. There's a lot of quality content here for anyone with the patience to suffer through the clumsy implementation in which it's presented. Yet despite these incentives, Avalon ultimately feels like a promising prototype for a brilliant game that has yet to be created.
Game Observer (Aug 17, 2009)
A collection of clichés that have players repeating the same boring chores undermine a rather beautiful game.
GameSpot (May 01, 2009)
Avalon Code isn't a bad game, but its quirks and overall mediocrity prevent it from realizing its potential, leaving its quaint adventuring style best approached by the patient.
Game Revolution (May 19, 2009)
Since the combat is so shallow, and the story is rather bland in spite of how different it is, Avalon Code never really sucked me in. The game flow is constantly interrupted by one embuggerance or another, though it has the potential to grow into something great. Had the combat been just a bit more intuitive, or the magic less useless, or the whole re-writing codes thing that the game revolves around was easier to understand (or even just better explained), this might have been one the best games for the DS this year, but instead it’s just a big pile of “could haves”.