Nights of Azure Review – Yoru no Nai Kuni (PS4 Import)
I was pleasantly surprised by Gust and Koei Tecmo’s PS4 action RPGNights of Azure.
Nights of Azure looks good and plays smoothly in all situations, with frame rate drops coming only on rare occasion. Gameplay never got bogged down by performance issues and what’s more, the action was always fun to watch during my playthrough. Dark blues and purples work well to keep the nighttime theme strong and, as a bonus, give great backdrop for all the fancy spell effects.
Sad reality is that Gust doesn’t have a ton of budget to put into these games, so you’ll see its imperfections fairly often. Whenever characters interact, you’ll see graphics overlap and clip and otherwise look goofy. It’s forgivable and understandable, but that doesn’t mean unnoticeable.
With a couple of standout tracks, the music delivers. In battle, chilling at the hotel, or anything in between, the audio was always good. Even the vocal theme in Underwearland worked somehow.
Nights of Azure‘s core plot is basic, but the character-focused side of the story earns credit for doing something less than common in JRPGs: it tells a love story between homosexual characters who aren’t stereotyped to the moon and back. A lot of games and anime have “accidental” half-naked run-ins, awkward situations, games of grab-boob, or unrequited love between women, but Nights of Azure goes the genuine route and ends up much stronger for it. We see the romance between Arnice and Lilysse unfold step-by-step, and by the end, we’re cheering for everything to work out for them. The two laugh together, fear together, and share a love the audience can take seriously, even if a lot of other anime tropes adorn Nights of Azure.
homosexuality ZOMGsploited all over the place, it’s sometimes hard to find any place on screen not occupied by a giant boob. The hugeness isn’t the only funny thing, but the physics. Watch them some time — I mean really stare at them, like I did. They don’t just move while the girls breathe (as seen in Vanillaware games), but they move as if they’re balloons housing mice. It’s like there’s an animal moving around, trying to escape.
And since this is published by Koei Tecmo, there had to be stripping involved, right? In order to level up, Arnice has to dress down into the tattered remains of lingerie. Why? Because “it’s just us girls here,” in the words of our Lilysse-lookalike spirit hostess.