Sin Chronicle CBT Review: An RPG that You Can Really Decide the Ending
As the spiritual successor of this classic RPG Chain Chronicle, Sin Chronicle is probably one of the most anticipated mobile title in 2021. The game is said to offer a “true role-playing experience”, where you can decide the ending of the story with no do-overs.
The first closed beta test held last week gave a preview of what Sega’s upcoming RPG has to offer and it well demonstrated that any choices made in your adventure are permanent and with consequence.
▍ Dark Fantasy Tale with Massive Worldview
The story of Sin Chronicle is set in the fantasy world of Herudora, where dark monsters from the Abyss threaten mankind with dark power. In order to protect themselves, the humans build a huge wall to defend the monster. Those who fight the monsters putting their lives at stake are known as the Knights of the Borders.
The dark fantasy worldview and setting certainly suits the taste of many RPG lovers, especially for those who have been playing Chain Chronicle for a while. The plot is surprisingly heavy with live-or-die checkpoints coming all the way in your adventure.
Though only one chapter was available in the CBT, the prologue is more than enough to drag you into its melancholy mood. The protagonist is a young knight going on a mission to fight the dark monsters. Challenge soon comes when his squad leader is fatally wounded during battles as he falls to the deepest ground of the Abyss.
Waking up with a mysterious book known as the “Chronicle”, the protagonist obtains a vision to see the future and the power to change destiny before death arrives. Surviving from various ferocious attacks, the protagonist gets back to the surface with the book’s guardian spirit Mythos. As an appreciation to your survival, the Knights of the Borders entrust you to go on an expedition to the 13 levels of the Abyss.
Sadly the scenario is not fully voiced or the whole experience will be much more impressive in addition to the dramatic effects and artistic 2D illustration. Considering that Chain Chronicle has a fully-voiced story, it feels a little weird that Sega doesn’t do the same for Sin Chronicle. But chance is that they simply didn’t put the voices in CBT.
▍Write Story of Your Own
Just as many other RPGs, there are options for players to choose in the scenario. But decisions have to be made in caution as they do affect the ending in every chapter. Your choice will affect the Affinity Level of your teammates, whether you get the character’s bonding story, as well as keywords available in “Chronicle” to change the future.
▼ Collect Keyword in the main & bonding story to rewrite future
▼ The characters that you select to talk to in Camp will affect their Affinity Level, as well as the keywords available in the Chronicle
At the final stage of every chapter, you will have to make an “final decision” and only one can choose from the two. The choice will decide which character joins your team, as well as the ending. By repeating these decisions in every chapter, you will be writing a story of your own.
▼A warning will showcase when you make the “Final Decision”, suggesting this choice will decide who live and who die.
One interesting point is that players can obtain 3-star key characters from Tavern (Gacha). Unlike normal 3-star characters, 3-star key characters will appear in the main scenario and verify the keywords available in your “Chronicle”.
Fortunately you can get 2-star key characters as you proceed the story, so it doesn’t really affect the whole story. But getting 3-star key characters makes your journey smoother by dropping rarer weapons and unlocking more bonding stories. It also means that the key characters in every chapter may be different, and a ton of different gacha banners will be featured in the future.
▍3D Turn-Based Battle System
The key gameplay allows players to manipulate the characters to freely search the map for treasures (weapons/ Gold) and herbs. Monsters appear along the way and you will be fighting them with a 3D turn-based battle system. It’s good that the map gets more and more complicated featuring different gimmicks and multiple routes, but it takes time to collect all treasures when auto-run only takes you directly to the boss.
▼ Full Gameplay Video
In battles, BP will be assigned to your characters each turn and you will have to decide to unleash normal attacks or skills by spending different amounts of BP. Just as any other RPGs, different characters have different skills and buffs, diversifying the strategies that can be used. The order of actions of enemies and allies is displayed at the bottom of the screen, and you can target the enemy with early action order simply by tapping its icon.
Continuing to attack the enemy can accumulate the Overdrive Gauge at the bottom right of the screen, and activate a powerful Overdrive skill when the Gauge reaches its fullest. This gauge accumulates more by hitting the weaknesses of the enemy, so forming a party that can hit the weaknesses of the monsters would definitely help. The enemy will enter a “Break” state when you deal enough damage, and you can take this chance to deal critical hits. The Overdrive skill also comes with a special cut-in for each character.
▼ Overdrive Skill
Levelling up characters can only be done through fighting monsters, so the nurturing system is actually quite simple. As the character’s rank increase, points can be obtained to raise skills’ levels and unlock more abilities. You can also equip weapons and magic items obtained from the dungeons and spirits to the characters to increase stats. Different spirits have different ability and brings different effects.
The elaborate story and stunning 3D graphics are undoubtedly the highlights of the game. The fact that you can really decide the fate of the characters is really intriguing. As story plays the most important role in this game, it is rather disappointing that it is not fully voiced. The gameplay finds similarity to many other mobile RPGs, so you can clear all battles pretty speedily by turning on the auto mode. As a mobile RPG, Sin Chronicle certainly meets the standard, but it may be hard to satisfy the growing needs of mature gamers who are looking for a more innovative game system. Sin Chronicle is set to release for mobile on December 15, 2021.