A while ago, I was looking at my eye. It was severely red and itchy. Looking closer, it appeared I had somehow scratched it. After flushing my eye out several times, I still couldn't get rid of the searing, excruciating pain. My vision grew cloudy as the severe agony increased. Just before passing out, one thought flashed through my head..."Daaaaamn, this hurts... but at least I'm not playing Blaze and Blade."
Blaze and Blade is a port of a Japanese Playstation game. If you thought Final Fantasy VIII's PC port was lacking, you ain't seen nothing yet. It's as if they tossed this game right into an emulator, then let all hell run loose. Why this game was chosen to be ported in the first place, I have no idea. Perhaps because it was a second or third generation PSX game. Perhaps because no one else wanted the rights to it. Nonetheless, it was made. And now it's my job to keep you away from it.
After installing the game, you create a party of four customizable characters. Each character allows you to swap variables such as sex, occupation (Warrior, Rogue, Fairy, etc.), and magic type. But - and this is a big "but," folks - the entire customization concept is a lie. A total lie. The variables do next to nothing in terms of affecting the play of the game. Each occupation class is just a simple variation of the same idea, and what specialization they do offer does little to alter the flow of the game.
For the port, they've added the option of choosing between multiple screen resolutions, but higher resolutions do nothing to improve the game's graphics. If anything, they only increase the chances of polygonal errors. Polygons clash every which way, jumbling into a crazy mess. Even when the polygons are clean and well arranged, the game is still ugly and flat.
But lets look past the sorry graphics. What's the game about? Four heroes who must search for fame and treasure. That's it. That's what the entire game is about. No drama, no plot. Sad, isn't it?
Action-wise, Blaze and Blade is like a piss-poor, shallow version of Secret of Mana. You run around killing an unlimited flow of enemies, hacking and slashing away. You control only one character at a time, which means the idiot computer AI will usually let the other three die. And swapping between your characters is unwieldy and unnatural. Same goes for the menu systems of the game.
As you trudge through the tedium, the only point is to gain more levels and abilities. However, the new levels and abilities really don't add anything to the game. It just a whole lot of nothing.
The lesson here, students, is that when you make a bad port of an already sub-average game, you wind up with crap. If this game had some focus, some goal to work towards, then perhaps it could have been better than crap. Frankly, Blaze and Blade is just out there to trap the unassuming with its anime art cover and the promise of a computer RPG quest. It's just so pointless. So very, very pointless. There may be blaze and blades in this game, but there's no heart and soul.