Sword and Fairy: Together Forever is the newest instalment in the ever growing Sword And Fairy series. It was developed by SOFTSTAR and published world wide by EastAsiaSoft. It was released on August 4th, 2022 for PlayStation, but released in October 2021 for PC.
*Disclaimer: A code was provided by the publisher for the purpose of this review. That in no way affects the review as my thoughts are mine and mine alone.
When Xiu Wu is told by his master to go to the Demon Realm to investigate a weird disturbance, he does so without hesitation, but little does he know, he’s not welcome there and starts getting hunted by the Demon Lord himself, only to end up being banished to the lowly human realm. Yue Qingshu is out helping her little village when she finds a mysterious fruit and suddenly has the will to bite it. Luckily her little friend stops her.
The story starts off a little slow, as you’re tasked to help figure out what is happening in the world and why so many creatures and demons are going haywire. Before you know it you’re swept up in a big conspiracy involving an entire Sect of people, a little boy who can be possessed by a deity, and the cause of all the chaos in the world. It truly kept me going as it was all amazingly paced when it got going. The downside is that I found it was hard to really retain anything that was happening in the story. The reason for this is because the spoken language in the game is Mandarin, and the conversations progress at their own pace. So I found myself speed reading all of the dialogue so I wouldn’t miss any, but as I said, that left me retaining very little of what was happening in the long run.
After playing it through twice though, it helped pick up on things I never did the first time. I felt it helped in all honesty, but the ability to advance text at your own pace would’ve helped immensely. Throughout the game, there’s actually quite a few storylines going on all at once, and the game does a wonderful job at letting you see more views than just one. Like seeing how Sang Yo dealt with the responsibilities of being the defender of his village, or seeing Bai Moqing dealing with the problems that her brothers have created in the town they grew up in. It was all so well written and translated, minus the few errors here and there, that it’s easy to get lost and invested in this world and story. From the depths of the sea, to the beautiful castles of the demon realm, to the grand forests of the human realm, I couldn’t stop taking screenshots!
The gameplay is what surprised me when I started it. The previous entry, which is the only Sword And Fairy game in the franchise I played, was a turn based RPG. But this one flips the script and ends up being an action RPG, which honestly worked well, when you played on Easy. Hear me out though, the reason for this is because the enemy health bars between East and Normal are so vast, I found myself having more fun on Easy when I played it on Ps4, than I did on Normal on Ps5. The bosses that could one hit me and then take 20 minutes to beat, did fair amounts of damage and I could drop them in 5-10 minutes on Easy. The AIs didn’t die nearly as much, they felt like they actually did damage, it was fantastic.
There’s a few gameplay elements that feel out of place though and just don’t work very well, and those are everything tied to the stealth sections. Having to do these more than once, was nothing short of a pain in the ass. The stealth barely functioned, enemies would catch you from the far corners of their eyes, and even if you distracted them, they usually turned towards you while they looked at the rock you threw at the wall. Sure you get a tool to go invisible for a few seconds, but that doesn’t help when you get caught because it wore off and you weren’t FULLY behind the guard.
The game is pretty packed honestly with sidequests and a few minigames that you get to do on your journey. As you unlock the world, you eventually get to fast travel all around. I found myself constantly checking every town after I did a big story beat to find out if there were more side quests for me to do, which more often than not, there was at least one, somewhere. There’s also a few minigames you can take part in, like a card game! Or even a weird dancing minigame that was fun the first few times I played it, but did eventually get annoying. I found myself doing every side quest on each run of the game, just because they gave me some handy items that I just never used, because who uses items in RPGs!?
Unfortunately there were a few bugs that I ran into, that will hopefully be remedied in later patches, considering I played this before the day one patch, but it was still stable! My biggest bug was just some cutscenes not lining up with the audio, so the video would lag behind a lot, and end before I fully saw something, or areas just not loading right. These were easily remedied by reloading my save, but I hated having to beat a super hard boss again when it happened. Again, screw normal difficulty! The other weird thing is that the game has a transmog system on the PS4. So some quest rewards give you an item to change the look of your weapons. But on PS5 that’s just not there. You still get the reward for doing the quest, but you can’t use it. I don’t know if it’s because the PS5 can handle the look of the different weapons you obtain and the PS4 can’t, but it didn’t make sense to me to not include a feature but still give you the items.
- Well Written Dialogue
- Interesting Story
- Fun Characters
- Some Annoying Bugs
- The Difference Between Easy And Normal Is Vast
- Hard To Retain What’s Happening Because You Have To Read So Fast
If you haven’t tried the Sword And Fairy franchise, I’d say now is the time to do it. The game is gorgeous, the characters are lovable, and the story is amazingly interesting so long as you retain it. Definitely a must play for RPG lovers.
Game & Developer Information
Developer Website: SOFTSTAR
Developer Socials: Twitter
Publisher Website: EastAsiaSoft
Publisher Socials: Twitter
PSN Store Links: £34.99/€39.99 Europe / $39.99 North America
Trophy Information: 38. 1 / 4 / 13 / 20