Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch is a joint endeavour between LEVEL-5 and Studio Ghibli, it was originally released in Japan only on the DS and PlayStation 3, however a localised version is now on its way to western shores exclusively on the PlayStation 3.
A 13 year old boy named Oliver tragically loses his mother and travels to Ni No Kuni (a parallel universe), in an attempt to bring her back. With the help of a lantern-nosed doll named Drippy - who is brought to life by Oliver’s tears, he travels around the land of Ni No Kuni befriending familiars for battle to find his mother.
There is obviously a lot more to this RPG than that brief description, unfortunately a 20 minute preview is never enough for a game of this magnitude, but even so it did not disappoint. The most striking thing about this game is its stunning visuals that are no surprise considering Studio Ghibli’s involvement. The environments range from large explorative areas which resemble paintings to towns bustling with life giving a sense of a living anime.
|Drippy and Oliver walking through a forest.|
Arriving at Ding Dong Dell, one of the bustling towns, you are met with a closed gate and a guard who has lost his enthusiasm. You’re tasked with transferring some enthusiasm from one guard to the other; this is a great introduction to the spell book you carry and is a great way to learn its uses. Once you are granted access to the town you are free to roam and speak to characters, the voice acting is great but it’s always disappointing being met with text conversations when speaking to towns folk or quest givers after a voice acted cutscene. Having said this, individual personalities are present in text, giving light to just how well this game is written.
|Acquire familiars for battle.|