Genre: Adventure, RPG, Puzzle
System: Nintendo Switch
Developer | Publisher: Scream! Design Works, ToyBox Inc. | Arc System Works
Age Rating: US ESRB T
Issue date: 4 February 2021
Check out the code used courtesy of Arc System Works and Strange Compelling Media!
Kowloon High-School Chronicle (also known as Kowloon Youma Gakuen Ki: Origins of Adventure in Japan) is a JRPG first-person dungeon hybrid/visual novel developed by ToyBox Inc and published by Arc System Works.
Kotaro Minakami is a reserved and laid-back student who often misses classes.
The game is a remastering of a PS2 game called Kowloon Youma Gakuen Ki, which was only released in Japan and published by Shout! Design work and originally published by Atlus around 2004. The original version didn’t sell very well at first, but thanks to positive word-of-mouth it gained a large audience, making it a cult classic in Japan. In addition, a new expanded edition was published in 2006, in which errors were corrected and new content was added.
Is this game worth it? Let’s find out!
remastered and improved!
Ayuko Hinakawa, the young and reliable teacher of class 3-C!
The exclusive remastering for Switch adds a few new features, such as a very well done full-screen Japanese dub, revised graphics, and support for widescreen in the sequences for exploring the dungeons. However, the visual scenes in the novel are still in 4:3, which seems odd given the dungeon exploration scenes mentioned above.
Rescue Room in the ruins of Heraklion!
Despite my concerns about the aspect ratio during the visual scenes of romance, I still think it’s very well done. This is an old-school anime from the mid-2000s. I also really like the music, which has a very jazzy and bebop vibe that fits the aesthetic of the game very well.
From a performance standpoint, the game works very well and stably in both docked and portable/Switch Lite mode!
Live like a student and a treasure hunter!
The old merchant Sala, an old man who helps the main character during his stay in the ruins of Heraklion.
The Kowloon School Chronicle follows the adventures of a young Japanese treasure hunter named Kuro Habaki (you can change his name if you want) who works as a member of the Rosetta Society.
After dangerously exploring the ruins of Heraklion, he receives a mission that forces him to move to Tokyo, Japan, and attend Kamiyoshi High School. It is a boarding school that hides many secrets and treasures in the ruins beneath the school, and tries to maintain a normal school life by making friends and building relationships along the way.
Asuka Yachiho, the first friend the protagonist makes at school. Full of energy and a bit busy!
I really like this story and this presentation. It’s really like an anime with an overall plot, but also episodic plots for each chapter. The presentation leans pretty heavily on the theme of episodic anime, so much so that there’s an opening clip at the beginning of each chapter and an ending song at the end, which really won me over.
Different emotions you can react to at certain times in history.
You also have to make a decision in the course of history. Some of these are the usual dialogue options you see in visual novels. But most of the decisions made in history have been made by feel-good decisions. Some of these can elicit funny reactions from different characters, but it can also be a bit confusing to know which emotions fit a particular situation.
Tsukumi Nanase, great reader and anyone interested in the occult and super high cultures!
During the visual sections of the novel, you can also explore the school and playground, allowing you to interact with the characters, purchase items, and explore the rooms. Explore a network of different rooms where you will find useful items.
Crawl in the dungeons of the old school!
Throwing a gas grenade at a group of scorpions.
The Chronicle of Kowloon High School takes you through various parts of the ruins beneath the school, and that’s where the JRPG game of crawling through a dungeon comes in. You can explore the dungeon, find items and treasures, dodge traps, solve puzzles and, of course, fight enemies.
The game shows its age because it doesn’t take you by the hand during your adventures. Puzzles can be a bit cryptic in their clues. Still, I feel like there are interesting ways to solve different puzzles. From combining elements to using found elements.
Fight one of the bosses!
As you battle the various enemies you’ll encounter in the dungeon, you’ll need to keep an eye on your AP. The number of APs you have is reduced by the actions you take, from action to attack with your weapon, which have different AP costs associated with them. It’s somewhat turn-based, but you can perform many more actions during your turn until you run out of APs, and the same goes for your opponents.
You’ll also end up in the ruins with your classmates, who can support you in battle with their passive and active skills. This can be very useful if you find yourself in an emergency situation.
Find a treasure!
The game can also be difficult, depending on the difficulty level, and requires some thinking and strategy as you go through the different parts of the ruins below the school.
You can also determine the appearance of the main character by spending ability points and skill points that you get when you level up. You can also fill in his report at the beginning of the game, which determines various factors regarding his stats and abilities.
I wonder what these books are!
Kowloon High-School Chronicle is a fun old-school caterpillar that will appeal to niche JRPG fans. Personally, I enjoyed it a lot, and I really like the way the game is based on an episodic anime presentation and atmosphere.
I can say that this game has a cult status in my eyes!
Final Verdict: I love it.
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