Trials of Mana is a remake of Seiken Densetsu 3, which was originally released for the Super Nintendo and never left Japan until it was released as part of the Collection of Mana on Nintendo Switch in 2019.
A Trials of Mana demo is now available on PS4 and there are a lot of changes between the remake and the base game. Trials of Mana uses the same story and scenario of the Super Nintendo original, but the remake has a ton of changes and additional content, making it feel like a brand new experience.
Related: Trials Of Mana Shows Off English Dub In New Trailer
Sound & Visuals
By far the biggest change to Trials of Mana comes in the sound and visuals department. The original Trials of Mana was a 2D game on the Super Nintendo, but the remake has been built from the ground up for modern systems and uses a 3D world.
The combat system in Trials of Mana has been overhauled and it’s now similar to a modern Ys game. Each character can perform light or heavy attacks, which can be combo’d together to affect a larger area. The super moves that were tied to a meter in the original game are back, but they now have little cutscenes that play whenever they are used. though these can be turned off in the options menu. These attacks take longer to charge up, but they deal a lot more damage.
It’s now possible for the player to see the AoE of all enemy attacks and can avoid them by dodge-rolling. This means that combat is a lot more dynamic and fluid than it was in the original Trials of Mana. The player can now see a boss monster’s health bar, which is extremely helpful, as the damage numbers flashed past so quickly in the original game, so it was hard to tell if attacks were dealing damage.
The player can instantly switch between their party members with the press of a button, but the A.I. tactics menu is a lot easier to understand this time around, with simple commands and guidelines for the player to choose from.
Trials of Mana has four difficulty options, so the people who just want to experience the story can breeze through the game on the easier difficulties.
In the original Trials of Mana, the character could improve their stats when they leveled up, but the gains felt slight and every character was so focused on specific combat styles that the game may as well have leveled up for you. In the remake, each stat has skill points, which can unlock new attacks or passive abilities. The player can equip two passive abilities at first but will unlock more over the course of the game.
There are new powers called Chain Abilities, which are passive abilities that can be equipped by anyone in the party, regardless of who unlocked them. It’s also possible to unlock Chain Abilities over the course of the story, such as when the party first travels to the Wendel and meets the priest there.
Characters can now change their costumes whenever they want. It’s likely that characters will be able to take on the look of different classes without needing to use their abilities. This will be helpful for people who like/don’t like how fanservicey some of the costumes are.
In the original Trials of Mana, when the player met one of their partners, they were treated to a cutscene explaining that character’s intro scenario. The player now has the choice to play through the intro scenario of their partners or just watching a cutscene.
Quality Of Life Improvements
The recent remake of Secret of Mana was criticized for being too similar to the original game and for none of the antiquated design elements being fixed with quality of life improvements. Trials of Mana has introduced a number of changes that have improved the game experience.
The ring item system is still in place, but the menus load a lot faster than they did on Super Nintendo. It’s quick and easy to switch out items on the list, making it far less of a chore to use items in battle. It’s now possible to hotlink moves to the shoulder buttons, making it easier than ever to use items or cast spells without pausing the game, which was a huge annoyance with the original game.
The item seeds/pots are back, but it’s now possible to level up the pots around the world, adding an incentive for using the mechanic, as the player can unlock some great items by farming the seeds.
Trials of Mana now has quest markers and an adventure log, which is extremely helpful, as it was very easy to get lost in the original game if the player didn’t memorize a single line of dialogue.
Trials of Mana will also include brand new content that didn’t appear in the SNES original. There will be fifty hidden Lil’ Cactus people around the world map and collecting them will unlock a reward.
In the original Trials of Mana, the player could only upgrade their class twice, but the remake is introducing two new classes for every character (one light, one dark), that cannot be unlocked until the post-game. In order to unlock these classes, the player will need to travel to new areas that weren’t in the original game. Trials of Mana also has a New Game+ mode, which will make things easier for players who want to experience all of the different character paths and storylines in the game.
Trials of Mana will be released for Nintendo Switch, PC, and PlayStation 4 on April 24, 2020.
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