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Preview: Fairy Tail – For now, the magic happens

On the sidelines of our interview with the producer of the Fairy Tail game, Keisuke Kikuchi, we were able to try the game with the demo presented during Paris Games Week 2019.

Can we have hope of a good adaptation as a fan of Fairy Tail?

Thank goodness this is neither a fighting game nor a Musou

Before going to the heart of the subject, let’s start by welcoming the choice of genre regarding this adaptation of the manga by Hiro Mashima. Unlike the many games taking over the universe of the most popular shonen, in particular those of Bandai Namco with the Jump licenses (Dragon Ball, Naruto, One Piece…), the rights holders did not choose the easy solution, in other words by choosing the genres: fighting games or Musou.

Far from being a bad choice, quite the contrary sometimes (Naruto Ninja Storm and One Piece Pirate Warriors, for example, are good licenses at this level), we especially criticize the redundancy of genres. Few of them stand out, so much so that they pique our curiosity every time when they come out of these shackles.

Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot, lately, is more than just talking. Despite our reservations, we welcome the effort to propose something different while putting the means into it. This is also the case for this Fairy Tail which offers an RPG in the world of manga and which starts with the arc of Tenro Island. We refer you to our interview to find out why the game decides to start there.

Wise choices

Given the huge cast of the manga, the choice of the RPG with turn-based fights seems logical. While we expect a dozen playable characters at the moment, it is in any case the best way to compose the team of his dreams.

The software is developed by the studio Gust, notably known for its series of RPG Atelier. If you already know this license, this Fairy Tail is not likely to disorient you as it contains many codes. The universe of alchemists also share many similarities with that of the magi, hence the rather judicious choice of studio regarding this adaptation.

For this demo with the producer, we only played with Natsu, Lucy, and Erza. After a short visit to the guild, and the city of Magnolia, we were able to explore an outdoor environment while fighting a few monsters to end up fighting against Geralt.

Fans will undoubtedly find their account

Having some experience on Atelier games, and compared to what we have tried, we can already say that the lights are green. Overall, fans will appreciate the care given to the fidelity of the universe and the characters.

To give you an example, rebuilding the guild will give you access to more and more queries displayed on the board. As in the manga, we can go on a mission by composing our team.

We have practically the same principle in the Atelier with the alchemist’s requests, hence, once again, consistency in the choice of studio thanks to its know-how on points like this one.

On the other hand, it nevertheless keeps some usual faults of its models, notably the technical aspect. Indeed, the title will certainly not dazzle you with its graphics. Same thing with regard to the exterior decorations and the bestiary. However, the title manages to visually capitalize on the heart of the gameplay and especially on what fans are looking for.

An explosion of magic

Although the title is still in development, Gust has convinced us where it is needed. The modeling of the characters gives a rendering very close to the anime despite facial expressions that are still a little rigid.

But it’s mostly on the side of the magic of each character where we take full view. With this duel against Gerald, we were able to launch Natsu’s fiercest techniques (including his Thundering Fire Dragon mode which activates when he’s in trouble) and receive those from Erza’s childhood friend.

These floods of magic are without a doubt the biggest highlight of this Fairy Tail. In addition, with its turn-based system where we aim for a grid of 9 boxes in the manner, it recalls a certain Radiant Historia, but we cannot yet know if it will have the same strategic dimension.

We only regret that Lucy’s attacks are a little below what we can expect. We will have to wait for the result because the title is still in development, but it is a shame not to see the invocations fully modeled.


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