01-03-2013 04:20 AM
A few years late I know! But I finally got around to playing it. And apart from a few annoying things about it and boss battles that really did not need to be that hard!!! I loved it. It has done something I've never come across in a game before, tackle historical fiction essentially with a fantasy twist. Most of it was fantasy of course, but the history lessons it gave in between chapters with a piano sonata playing was probably one of my most favorite parts of the game and was the treat I looked forward to as a reward for playing through. I did find part of the story confusing though and the end almost brought up more questions than answers.
What makes this game special to me is that it embraced other art forms and acknowledged the fact that the real world exists and doesn't try so hard to pretend it is its own world and anything real exists. It took one of human histories greatest composers, brought his music and story and put him into a fantasy world and the results were quite magical for me. And one of the greatest things art can do is lead us into new directions. Precious few games do this, cause us to seek out new information and to learn but Eternal Sonata did. For one (even though I've obviously heard him before) it caused me to listen to more of Chopin, and appreciate his piano sonatas again. Because even though its fiction, in a way I feel like I've gotten to know his music a bit better, and I know some of his history where I didn't know it before, and I travelled with a fictional version of chopin through a fantasy world and it made me feel a bit more connected to his music, it made his music more personal. That is a wondeful thing this game has done.
It also introduced me to Goerge Sand. I now am trying to find out if any of her books are translated into english as I am extremely curious to read her. I can't think of another game that has made me aware of an author and made me curious enough to seek out their books.
Eternal Sonata (if I remember correctly) did not get great reviews, because they were so focused on their not being a great variety in the enemies, and the story being full of tropes. It just seemed to be presented as another JRPG, which contained nothing new or different. But to me, the game tried all kinds of new things. The battle system was unique to me, and fun and challenging. And yes the skin may have been a standard JRPG (though which stunning art) but underneath that skin lay a very special game. The likes I have never seen before.
I am so so glad that years later I dusted off my copy to finally play through it because it is a game that will stay with me