Another Star is a console-style RPG with a fast-paced battle system and a world that encourages players to explore and discover hidden areas as they lead their party on a journey across a fantasy world. While clearly influenced by the style and gameplay of the past, the game also implements innovations and ideas from the present.
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Inspired by the 26th Ludum Dare competition theme of Minimalism, Another Star originally used a single 128×128 tile sheet for everything, yet still managed to create a vast world to explore. Version 3 of the game expanded the graphics beyond this original limitation, but the minimalistic spirit lives on. Secrets are hidden everywhere, and you never know what you might find on the next screen. Those who take the time to explore instead of merely rushing to the next objective will certainly be rewarded.
Battles are turn based, but play out quickly. There's no need for complicated targeting here, simply choose to attack and everyone in your party will deal damage to every enemy. But be careful! Enemies will do the same to you, making them even more dangerous in numbers. Your HP will drain quickly, so be sure to use abilities and items to your advantage. Those who only choose to fight are apt to meet an early demise.
Don't feel like fighting random battles? You'd rather explore awhile and then grind a little later? No problem! Random encounters are only initiated by accepting them when the yellow "!" icon appears over your head. Just watch out for sneak attacks. If you see the red "!!" icon appear, you better press the button quickly to accept or else you'll be taken by surprise.
Our story begins with Tachi, the prince of Clan Minas. Sent by his father to retrieve a falling star that promises to upset the balance of the clans, the young warrior gets caught up in a sudden chain of events that will affect the entire planet. The fledgling warrior will journey across entire continents, slowly unraveling the mysteries of the world around him and encountering countless new people and places.
While some retro games focus on parody and humor, Another Star lets its plot play out on its own weight to evoke the atmosphere of storytelling in an age when storage space was tight even for simple text and every word had to count.
Tachi's adventure is presented using a high-quality CRT shader to emulate the feel of the old 8-bit consoles that inspired its look. Don't like the effect? System too slow to handle it? You can toggle the shader on and off at any time with the simple push of a button.
The game also features a full, original soundtrack composed in the style of a YM2413 FM synth chip. The budget-priced chip was a common add-on for consoles and computers of the late 8-bit era, and its unique FM tone should make retro game lovers feel right at home.
Another Star is currently available for Windows, OS X, and Linux from a number of online retailers.
It was developed by Dale Johnson, who did the programming, art, music, and design. He is also writing this paragraph in the third person. Check out the Vision Riders Blog for the latest updates on the game.