Everyone grows up hearing fairytales or watching movies about them; after all, they’re magical and uplifting (as long as you stay away from the Grimm’s Fairy Tales Classics), so of course we love them. Now, Crescent Moon Games has provided gamers with a chance to beat up their favorite fairytale characters in Fading Fairytales.
Fading Fairytales doesn’t depict the sweet, wholesome characters we know and love. In this fractured fairytale, our favorite characters, like the worst liar ever Pinocchio, prince of thieves Robin Hood, and “I can show you the world” Aladdin, have grown tired of being the heroes all the time. Now their goodness is fading into evil, and it’s up to the player to put together a crew of new fairytale heroes to set the old ones straight again.
This freemium, turn-based strategy game could perhaps best be described as “Baby’s first strategy game.” If you’re coming in to this expecting the complexity of Final Fantasy Tactics, Ogre Battle, or X-Com: Enemy Unknown, you’ll be sorely disappointed. Battles consist of small skirmishes, with the player having access to three units at a time. Each character has roughly one ability to use in combat, with a few more options being unlocked after the requisite time (or money) is put in. Each character plays fairly differently, but, given the simplicity to each of them, you’re likely to tire of their abilities quickly.
The graphics are decent enough and brightly colored, but the animation is that of the jankiest flash animations, the kind of stuff you might find in a browser-based game from 2008. Outside of combat you can buy new equipment, recruit new heroes, and level up your characters… though don’t expect to do much of this without plunking down some serious change beforehand. All of the upgrades and equipment tend to be priced so that they’re just out of reach, keeping players perpetually under-powered unless they’re willing to spend some cash.
The music for Fading Fairytales is pretty top-notch. The faux-orchestrated pieces appropriately getting you pumped when you need to go into battle and calming when perusing the menu. Fans of tactical RPGs are unlikely to be satisfied by the relative simplicity of Fading Fairytales; however, less experienced players might really enjoy it. It’s a fine enough title -- it runs well and features a nice variety of extras to boost your characters -- but the lack of depth will turn off experienced players. The story is interesting if you like fairytales and gives you a chance to battle the once good-guys-turned-bad instead of playing as them.