Children of Mana
By Matt Gulbrandsen Monday, 12 Feb 2007

How many times must someone poke themself in the eye with a fork to decide it hurts? How many times can you take a shit and still expect a toilet to accept your waste? Why am I asking these questions? Well my friends, they are all related to the Mana series as of late. The bottom line, Square can keep producing these mediocre Mana games and we will continue to buy them. Children of Mana is no exception.

Seiken Densetsu 2 and 3 (Secret of Mana 1 and 2 respectively) had left quite an impression on us. With great story lines, music, game play and graphics, it was a formula we kept coming back to. Those of you with a multi-tap know what I’m talking about.

Now ask yourself this: have you ever truly enjoyed a Mana game since these 2 stellar titles. Let’s see, we had Legend of Mana – CRAP. The rehash of the original Seiken Densetsu, Sword of Mana – CRAP. So we’re up to 2 games that you were tricked into buying and along came number 3 with the upcoming Dawn of Mana for PS2 already looking like a potential number 4.

What’s wrong with Children of Mana is how much it isn’t Secret of Mana. It is less an adventure than a dungeon crawler. At first it looks and smells like a Secret of Mana game. The graphics are bright and colorful with cute character sprites and great animation. Then all of the sudden it becomes floor after floor after floor of killing your old buddies Chobin and Rabite while collecting their goodies until a boss battle. Simple hack n’ slashes can be fun but only if they’re named Gauntlet. I couldn’t care less about the plot or the characters. The Mana Tree could be on fire with the all the animals of the Mana forest pissing on it to try to put it out and I still will not continue to play because that would be settling. If running around and killing countless hordes of enemies in random dungeons is what I’ll be doing for the rest of the game, I’ll put the fork down right now.

This game is pure doggy diarrhea with little plastic army men remains scattered through it. Give me a true Secret of Mana sequel with a giant world to explore and an absolute sense of adventure. I will not fall for it again, Square-Enix!