Yu-Gi-Oh!: The Sacred Cards - GBA

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Viewed: 2D Static screen Genre:
Adventure: Role Playing
Arcade origin:No
Developer: Konami Soft. Co.: Konami
Publishers: Konami (GB/US)
Released: Oct 2003 (US)
30 Jan 2004 (GB)
Ratings: PEGI 3+, ESRB Everyone
No Accessories: No Accessories


Taking leaves out of the books of such past games as Pokemon Trading Card Game and SNK Vs Capcom: Cardfighters Clash, this latest Yu-Gi-Oh title combines the usual concept with a host of RPG elements. For the uninitiated, Yu-Gi-Oh is based on the popular Japanese card battle game of the same name, which sees players wielding a deck of character cards, pitting them in battles and attempting to defeat an onslaught of adversaries.

The Sacred Cards sees players exploring Battle City, at a time when there just so happens to be a Yu-Gi-Oh tournament taking place, sponsored by a fictional corporation known as Kaiba. The aim of the game is to challenge and defeat other duelists, and win what are known as Locator Cards. Doing so subsequently unlocks the ability to challenge other Locator Card-holding duelists, and so the game progresses.

In typical Yu-Gi-Oh fashion, the battles themselves see players take turns in discarding cards that can attack each other, until one of the duelists reaches the point when they don't have one to defend themselves, at which point they lose hit points. Lose all your hit points and it's hasta la vista, baby…kind of. Throughout, traps and spells can be set and cast respectively, thus adding a little more variety to the proceedings.

There are over 900 cards of different abilities in total, as well as more than 100 duelists and rivals with which to do battle. The strategy throughout The Sacred Cards is in compiling a strong deck for each respective battle. The RPG elements appear in such aspects as the game's typical level-up system, which sees players' levels rise after each victory and thus increase their ability to handle more powerful cards.

Yu-Gi-Oh games have always been a bit of an acquired taste. The Sacred Cards attempts to take a step towards appealing more to the masses by introducing elements familiar with other genres, as well as slightly dumbing down the series' often deep and complex game design.