Stories of Bethem: Full Moon brings the vintage feel of a classic RPG to the Xbox One. You play as Khoma, the son of a man who was cursed while exploring the Indigo Forest. Desperate to save his father, Khoma seeks out help from the Red Witch, who sends him off on the beginning of his journey to find eight Oneiric Objects.
Along Khoma’s quest, there are tons of opportunities for exploration and side quests. While there is a decent amount of combat throughout the game, Stories of Bethem is filled with puzzles that you must work through in order to progress. Talking to people throughout the land will provide you with side quests, important information, or witty dialogue.
Stories of Bethem is exactly what you would expect from a Zelda-style RPG, and there is always plenty to do along the way to your next piece of the main quest. Exploring off the main path is rewarded with things like Unknown Medallions, a currency that provides bracelet upgrades to make you more powerful throughout the game. There is almost always somewhere to explore, whether it is a cave or a side path that leads to a hidden treasure chest.
Throughout Stories of Bethem, the dialogue is wonderful. I have found myself laughing out loud on more than one occasion at the tongue-in-cheek humor peppered throughout the story. The writers put in just enough of the witty dialogue to keep it entertaining without bogging down the game.
There is a minimal amount of guidance given between tasks, and the in-game map system is virtually useless. While this may be a tactic to encourage exploration. It is very frustrating when you are returning to continue playing and you either can’t remember what you are supposed to be doing or where you are supposed to go. There have been several times where I thought I was on the right path and ended up burning a lot of time in areas that I couldn’t progress through yet.
Along the same vein, you have to constantly be on the lookout or you may look past something small, such as a switch that you need to shoot, and may end up wasting an inordinate amount of time running around in circles. Some of the enemies and puzzles in the game have elements in them that ultimately draw your attention away from something you actually need to pay attention to.
Boss fights can be very frustrating early on in Stories of Bethem while you still have low life and you need to figure out exactly what you are supposed to be doing in each battle. It appears to take a very long time to earn bracelet upgrades (unless I am just terrible at finding Unknown Medallions, which may be the case) and this results in having to repeat basic boss fights that start out as fun but are aggravating by the time you finally complete them.
In Stories of Bethem, the focus is much more on enjoying the game itself, rather than achievements, so don’t look for a quick payout in Gamerscore. The achievements are a mixture of a few story-based achievements and a ton of collectibles. There are a wide variety of collectibles throughout Stories of Bethem, from bracelet and clothing upgrades to collecting monster auras.
Stories of Bethem: Full Moon is a great game if you are looking for a ton of exploration that is a throwback to classic RPGs. There is a nice balance of humor in the dialogue that helps to keep the story engaging, and I found myself looking forward to sitting down with Stories of Bethem for hours at a time, ready to continue my voyage as Khoma.
Developed by: GuGames Development
Published by: GuGames Development
Xbox Marketplace: https://www.microsoft.com/store/p/stories-of-bethem-full-moon/br3bp6f8h2lm
Steam Store: http://store.steampowered.com/app/412270