I love the original Legend of Kay and its remaster. Sure it’s not perfect, and not a groundbreaking or fantastic game, but I’m a sucker for older 3D platformer/adventure games and games with an ancient East Asian aesthetic. So I was excited to see that there was a port for the DS, being that similar games like Okami were able to be translated fairly well to that system despite hardware limitations, and seeing that it was a stealth platformer I was even more intrigued due to my love of games like Sly Cooper. However once I played and finished the game, I was massively disappointed even though I wasn’t expecting much.
The presentation is fairly poor. The comic book cutscenes from the console version have been compressed so badly they look like 240p YouTube videos. The in game graphics, even for the DS, are shoddy, the draw distance is bad, and the game just feels so lifeless and empty. It looks much worse than an early N64 or PS1 game, or even another DS game like Mario 64 DS. There is not even a lot of color to mask the bad graphics.
The game is very short. I beat it in about 3 hours and it only took me that long because of how much I kept dying from the poor controls, and from the game not properly telling me where to go. There is an arrow system to point to your next direction but more often than not the arrows will not lead you to where you need to go. A simple map system would’ve sufficed. The collectibles in the game don’t do anything other than increase your score, as if that matters in a 2011 DS game.
The gameplay is shallow as well. The stealth is minimal, only consisting of running past enemies when they look away and occasionally using invincibility toward the end of the game. The game has an emphasis on flipping switches on cat Buddha statues which is repetitive and tedious as it requires just getting to the statue and activating it. There’s a lot of platforming as well, which is unfortunate, because the jumping controls flat out suck, and often times you’ll either jump too far or not far enough, resulting in many cheap deaths. It becomes less of a problem once you get the double jump but it is still extremely hard to judge your jumping distance.
Overall the game is extremely mediocre at best and frustrating and devoid of substance at worst. I’m not upset that I bought this, considering how big a fan I am of the console Legend of Kay and I’m glad I got to experience all there is to the series so far, but non-fans will surely feel very ripped off. Even for a kids game I would not recommend this. There’s much better kids games and 3D platformer/adventure games even on the DS. If you want to play a game like this, either check out the console/Switch version of Legend of Kay, or get Okamiden on the DS. Even the Kung Fu Panda games on DS are a much better alternative.
Length of ownership: 6 months
No: I don’t recommend this product