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Odin Sphere: an Epic Fantasy

            The scene opens up with a battlefield. Demon Lord Odin’s troops flee from the fairy queen’s forces who use trickery and tactical maneuvers to lure the Aesir into a battle of attrition. Scene suddenly shifts to Gwendolyn, daughter of Demon Lord Odin, holding her sister Griselda as she lay dying on the battlefield. As members of the proud Valkyrie, Griselda’s dying words exist only to pray that her father would be proud that she died so gallantly in battle. With the last of her strength, Griselda gives her sister her magic spear. Made from the stones of the underworld, the spear is capable of drawing the energy from life recently deceased and forming it into powerful magic.

            Gwendolyn takes the spear and murmurs that she too will not be long behind, for it was Griselda King Odin loved most, and Griselda whom King Odin will be proud for her ultimate sacrifice. Always second best and yearning for her father’s affection, Gwendolyn cleaves a path of retreat for her troops, heedless of her own life. At camp, Gwendolyn finds her father and tells him of his daughter’s demise. Enraged, he orders a direct assault on the fairy encampment, and Gwendolyn is to lead to charge. She is all too eager to rush to her death.

            Yet death fails to claim her, even as she cuts down hundreds of fairy.

            Gwendolyn only ceases her push when she comes face to face with the fairy queen herself.

            “Impudent fool, do you have any idea what will happen if Odin gets his greedy hands on the Cauldron?” the queen says.

            But Gwendolyn merely points her spear at the fairy queen, ready to strike.

            “Wizard! Quickly! Where is my dragon?” the queen shouts.

            A human wizard appears in a flash of smoke, his body but a gnarled old branch with a white beard that reaches his toes.

            “It is ready my Queen,” he says before disappearing.

            The Fairy Queen pulls out her last trick: the summoning of the great dragon Belial. As head of the charge, it is Gwendolyn and Gwendolyn alone who faces the beast. As her and the dragon clash, she knows in her heart that it is only the magic spear from her deceased sister that has carried her thus far, and only the spear that allowed her to pierce the dragon’s hide and slay it.

            With the dragon gone, the Aesir forces sweep over the battlefield with renewed fury, quickly overtaking the mysterious Cauldron.

            Chasing enemy forces, Gwendolyn suddenly finds herself locked in battle with the legendary Shadow Knight, a mercenary employed by the fairy queen. Covered head to toe in black fire, he uses his blood-red blade, made from the same magic crystals as Gwendolyn’s spear, to battle with her. Between the dragon, the charge, and her sister’s death, Gwendolyn quickly falls, but as the knight pins her, he stops short of cutting her neck. The black hellfire flashes away, revealing a man with blond hair so fair it seems white.

            “If you are to kill me, do so now, do not make me wait,” Gwendolyn demands.

            An Aesir rushes to Gwendolyn’s rescue, but the Shadow Knight quickly cuts him down.

            “Go. This battle is lost. Any more deaths are meaningless,” he says before fleeing.

            Tired, Gwendolyn returns to her father who stands before the Cauldron.

            “With this, we can forge our own weapons of magic!” Odin announces.

            Weapons just like her new spear, Gwendolyn thought dismally as she left the soldiers and their cheering behind.

            The Cauldron, a great, pulsing machine, expanding and contracting as if it breathed, stood far in the distance now. But a great cry arose, and the fires of the Cauldron suddenly flickered.

            “The Cauldron is not a toy to be played with. It will ruin us all. King Odin… you will not have your way with it.”

            Gwendolyn hears this and turns to see a woman hidden, talking to herself among the brush. She is but a girl, wearing the clothes of the forest dwellers. On her hand is golden ring, and with a flash, that ring blinded Gwendolyn.

            Another great cry arose from King Odin, and Gwendolyn turned to see the fires of the Cauldron fully went out. She turned again and the girl was gone.

            Great book so far huh?

            Cool story: It’s not a book.

            It’s a video game.

            Divided into five different books with six chapters each, prologue and epilogue included, Odin Sphere takes the player through an epic fantasy with a storyline on par with some of the greatest fantasy stories on bookshelves today. With the most beautiful hand-drawn (as opposed to computer generated) character designs and landscapes on the market, Odin Sphere captured my heart as a reader, sending me on a journey I never thought I’d have: a journey where the characters in a story jumped magically to life.

            I doubt many readers out there are adept at playing the play station 2, or any video games for that matter, but the point of this post is just to shatter the stereotype that not all games are shoot-em-up gore-fests. Some games tell stories. In fact, a lot of games tell stories, but trust me, few do it better than Odin Sphere.

            For images on the game, I suggest doing a google search, they’re pretty breath-taking.

            If you’re interested in the whole plot-line, copy/paste this link in your browser.

            http://www.gamefaqs.com/ps2/936463-odin-sphere/faqs/61575

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2 Comments

  1. Okay, I’m hooked. I want it (not that I have time to play lately…) My kids are gonna love, love, love it too 🙂 Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
    • No problem, but it’s not an easy game to find. Check your local gamestop, since you’ll only find it used. Amazon and Ebay might be easier though, and the price is generally around 10 bucks, so it’s a great buy.

      Reply

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