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Crystal Warriors

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Crystal Warriors is a tactical role-playing video game for the Sega Game Gear handheld system. It was released by Sega in Japan in 1991 and North America in 1992. The animation was done by Kugatsuhime, a Japanese video game company. The gameplay of Crystal Warriors is similar to both the Shining Force and Fire Emblem series.

Crystal Warriors had a Japan-only sequel called Royal Stone, released in 1995.

Gameplay

The player forms a party of up to nine units to fight in each level. The player starts on one side of the map and an enemy force of up to nine units occupies a castle on the opposite side. The player must defeat the enemy force or move a unit on to the enemy castle entrance to complete each level. Each level has terrain features which form bottlenecks or change the speed of units. The player controls specialized units belonging to a particular elemental group and most of the strategy revolves around the element of a given unit and its correct usage. Each element is weak to one and strong versus another in a rock-paper-scissors system. Fire elemental units are strong against wind elemental units, while wind units are strong against water, and in turn water units are strong against fire. Earth-based units have no particular strengths or weaknesses.

Whenever a player unit attacks an enemy unit or vice versa, a battle occurs. A battle consists of two rounds where the units can fight with melee weapons, spells or monsters. The attacking unit strikes first in each round.

Unit types are as follows:

Warriors – Water/fire – basic fighters;

Lords – Water/fire – fighters with heavier weapons and defense, but lower attack;

Rangers – Wind – fighters with high attack but with low defense;

Healers – Earth – powerful healers with low attack and few hit points (except at maximum level, at which point they become extremely strong);

Wizards – Earth – casters with a variety of offensive elemental spells. Spells can be cast at range and only enemy casters can respond;

Princess – Earth – fighter/magic user with few hit points but high attack and defense.

Each unit acquires four experience points for defeating an enemy. Each time the unit gains ten experience points it increases in level, acquiring higher stats, with a maximum level of 9. Units can also defeat and capture monsters (which are also assigned an element) on each level, and use them in battle.

New units, weapons, and spells can be bought in towns along with information on the nature of the next level, which may affect the player’s choice of units.

Plot

The game follows the adventures of the Princess Iris of Ariel. The evil Jyn have overrun her father’s lands and stolen three of the four elemental crystals used to keep the peace. Her quest takes her through the lands of Ariel to fight the Jyn’s elemental governors and reclaim the crystals before defeating Emperor Grynn and his mysterious overlord.

Aside from the introduction (and closing) there is no plot development in the game.

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