A new turn-based 2.5D Fantasy RPG set in the extraordinary world of Valdren.
Tears of Magic is the new project from Good Old Pixel. A small team of Swedish developers who are deeply attached to the Breath of Fire series and some of BioWare‘s flagship projects, including Mass Effect and Dragon Age.
It’s a pixel art-fantasy RPG video game set in a magical world ravaged by corruption and teeming with intriguing anthropomorphic creatures.
A Kickstarter Campaign for the project was also launched a few days ago. As a result, if you want to learn more about this project or simply support the development team, I invite you to visit the page and learn more about it.
Do you feel ready to live a breathtaking story, form strong and lasting bonds, and explore a world filled with mysteries and dangers? Our journey to discover Tears of Magic begins today!
The Great Calamity
Tears of Magic‘s narrative immediately leads us to understand why the lands we will explore have undergone such a devastating and radical change.
It all began with a massive global storm about a century ago. Thunder rumbled in the sky, and torrential rain lashed the ground. The “Tears of Magic“, as they were later dubbed, were thought to be the tears of the goddess Aria herself, who was disappointed by humanity’s selfishness.
When the sun finally broke through the retreating storm, it shone a light on a much harsher world, were animals became crazed monsters of fury and hunger. Likewise, even some people began to lose their sanity, attacking anything or anyone in sight.
The effects were more severe in those with higher magic, converting many of the strongest warriors and magicians into soulless killing machines. The few who resisted “Corruption” fought to survive and protect others, but no matter how much they struggled, the waves of enemies were endless.
When humanity’s last embers of hope were about to burn out, the Dragon Clan came to their aid, boosting morale and assisting in recovery. They divided their clan members to defend all nations and became the primary force opposing the Great Calamity, fighting on the front lines against hordes of corrupted monsters and humans.
It was a difficult battle, with many dragons dying and entire towns vanished in a matter of weeks. The corrupted swarmed to overwhelm humans in place after place, increasing the pressure after each of their strongholds fell.
With the situation worsening by the day, the Dragon Lord dove into the depths of the Great Calamity. He fought through hordes of monsters with his brave companions to reach the source of everything, putting an end to it and restoring peace to the world.
The triumphant heroes, however, did not return with the Dragon Lord, who had negotiated with the goddess to end the Great Calamity. A bargain that cost him his life.
Our adventure in Tears of Magic will begin on these narrative premises: an incredible journey that will take us on beautiful adventures, fight battles to the death, and form wonderful friendships that will shape our personality.
The narrative sector of Tears of Magic affects not only the creation of our character’s story, but also the playful level, interactions with the game world, and, most importantly, what relationships we can have with the other characters.
The gameplay has some very interesting aspects, such as exploration mechanics, interaction with the environment, and a combat system to keep an eye on.
The attention and care that the developers have dedicated to game creatures is immediately apparent in the character design, which features a variety of characters with some cute animal features.
Each creature is also assigned to a clan. It will therefore be necessary to pay close attention when deciding which species will be ours, taking into account each character’s attributes, characteristics, and magical affinities.
You must carefully choose which clan to join, as well as your style, hair color, and even the clothes you will wear. If in doubt, I hope you make these decisions faster than I usually do!
It will also be necessary to shape our hero’s personality, making decisions that will change our character, influence our relationships with other characters, and change the course of our history.
Interacting with other creatures, forming bonds and relationships, will have an impact on our friendships, emotional situation, and even who will watch our backs in battle!
Crafting will be an important factor in both the aesthetics of the weapons and the gameplay and combat system. Exploring the Valdren lands will allow us to obtain the necessary materials to upgrade and modify weapons, as well as set runes to increase our power.
Fight like a Dragon
Tears of Magic has a combat system with a strong strategic component that immerses players in challenging turn-based battles.
The enemies will come into play only when they actually feel threatened by our protagonist. During the combat phases, we will be able to use all of our team members, alternating our movements with the enemy’s.
When we hit the same target with two characters and use the Tag Attacks combat mechanic, we will be able to combine their blows to create a much more powerful attack. Everything will be done with a single animation.
We could, for example, combine a fire spell with a basic sword attack to form a Fire Slash. The more times you combine attacks, the greater your chances of mastering cool combo attacks!
When you are attacked by enemies, you can develop what the developers refer to as the Danger Sense: a sort of sixth sense that allows you to predict your opponent’s moves. If an enemy is about to unleash a powerful special move, you can defend him, heal him, or even make him parry the attack.
During the battle, the playing field can turn out to be a bonus or a malus. For example, if the ground is soaked, it is best to use a lightning-type attack to deal extra damage, but this may also harm your teammates. As a result, it will be necessary to study the settings and determine which bonuses to use and which to ignore.
The team available to players consists of five members in battle, in which four have an active role while the fifth is an assistant. The battle assistant cannot be targeted by opponents, and affects the battlefield with autonomous effects, like occasionally healing an ally, applying their signature buff to the party or attacking opponents with offensive skills. Higher friendship unlocks stronger assistant skills.
A journey with a solid grounding
Tears of Magic appears to be a project with a lot of great ideas and interesting facets.
The decision to create this video game in pixel art is commendable, consistent, and fits perfectly with the game world and the developers’ intentions.
From a purely playful standpoint, the gameplay looks promising, and the combat system appears fluid, bright, and full of facets. And, if I had to add anything else, it’s almost nostalgic for us timeless romantics!
According to the developers, the sound design and soundtrack will be an extra not to be overlooked, also thanks to the collaboration with Yoshino Aoki and Travis Moberg.
The game is currently scheduled for PC release in January 2025. We’ll see if information on a possible release for PlayStation, Xbox, and Nintendo Switch is released at the end of the crowdfunding campaign.
While we wait to learn more about the project, we’d like to remind you that the Kickstarter Campaign is still open.
We can only wish the Good Old Pixel team luck with the development of their project and hope to enter the magical world of Tears of Magic as soon as possible!