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Elixir Review

2003-02-25, by Sia Garrett Manzari

Elixir is a new isometric RPG from Korea, in which you play with a 4 headed party in a traditional fantasy world...

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The story of Elixir is quite unusual: In the kingdom of Ektele Ulka, which means 'unholy well', there lived the Ingoles, a new race to fantasy fans, hostile and unfriendly, until they were tamed by humans and then lived in peace side by side with them. The land now was called Ektele Ulka, which means 'holy well'. But as all good things, they come to an end, this time by a war and a resulting revolt of enslaved Ingoles. In this war, a heretic named Boronwie was arrested and put to death, but before he died, he cursed the land, so that his revenge shall be taken by a small girl. Many news later a pillar of light emerged from the sea and soon after that event many women were pregnant. As the king now saw his position in danger and feared the revenge of the heretic, he tilled the prophecy a heresy and ordered all girls between 1 and 3 of age to be killed.
This is where the story takes off, as the king's guards invade the house of Philip and Piyuka to kill their daughter Elixir. Of course, her parents will not pass her daughter over to the guards, who so kill them and are just about to kill Elixir, as suddenly she begins to magically float and blind them. Is she the child of prophecy after all?
Before the guards can kill her, Anias, a friend of Philip enters the house and saves the child. Furtheron, you travel in a party of up to four members, where next to Elixir, who is an excellent mage and Anias you also have an Ingoles named Ran and the beautiful Ayleen and you have to find a way on a story with many twists and turns.

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Elixir plays like Bladur's Gate or Divine Divinity, it is by no means a mere Diablo clone, as the accent in game play lies strongly on the story. You move from area to area like in Baldur's Gate and uncover the map piece by piece. The party has everything a reasonable RPG party needs, like an inventory, a map, a logbook, stats, full equipment and also a RPG system which seems to have been developed quite well. The rest is standard RPG procedure: Take quest, kill enemies, solve riddle, earn XPs, find or buy better weapons and armour, raise your stats - solidly implemented in Elixir, but not shining out of the masses!

Combat & Magic

When it comes to combat, you can stop the game and order the party to fight, shoot arrows, cast spell, use items or to drink potions. The combat is not as sophisticated as in Baldur's Gate for example, as you can't configure to automatically stop on certain occasions, but it definately is more advanced than the simple hack'n'slash fights in Diablo. On the other hand, you can switch on Auto-AI so your party automatically attacks enemies. After you have killed your enemies, you can loot them, that is, if you can see the loot or dead bodies, because...

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...are not standard anymore. With a resolution of 640x480 it is way sub par and, even worse, due to the lack of transparency effects you don't see your heores behind a tree, don't see enemies and hardest of all, dont see the loot or other items you can pick up or use. And there is no hotkey for finding them also. Where the low resolution is halfway acceptable, the fact, that even 5 years ago it would have been hard to spot things on the screen, is not.


The other aspect next to a ganme's look, which is technical, is the sound. At least here, the game serves nice background music and some voice samples and sound effects, where voices are semi-pro only, but the sound effects suffice. There is but no EAX ot other surround sound. Still, sound is ok in Elixir!

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Elixir is a nice RPG, which is hidden in an ugly shell. When you find your way into it, it offers a nice, but not great RPG experience with many quests, items and areas to explore. Elixir is not a bad game, but there are many games which do the same as Elixir, but a lot better, like for example Baldur's Gate, Icewind Dale or Divine Divinity. Elixir simply does not offer anything new or innovative, and apart from the interesting story, does almost anything worse than above mentioned older games. And because of its look, it will have a hard time to appeal to many players. Still, for you hard core RPGamers, who have nothing to play at the moment, it is worth a look! The game has been release in Korea and Germany so far, a release date for other territories has yet to be annoucned!

The Verdict
Graphics (15%) 50%
Sound (15%) 65%
Control (25%) 70%
Fun (45%) 65%
Overall 64%

The ups and downs:
Interesting storyBad graphics
Interesting questsAverage sound

Reviewer's System
Version: 1
CPU: Pentium IV 1.8 GHz
RAM: 512
Graphics GeForce 3
Sound SB Live Platinum
OS: Win 98SE

Average Reader Ratings: 1 (40 votes)
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