Shiness: The Lightning Kingdom

Game review by
David Chapman, Common Sense Media
Shiness: The Lightning Kingdom Game Poster Image
Fresh anime-style RPG adventure; some complex fight scenes.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

Core themes are friendship, helping those in need. Chado, his friends must work together to explore land, help people they run across, stop senseless war, unite kingdoms.  

Positive Role Models & Representations

Chado, his friends have distinct, diverse personalities, with all exhibiting honorable, selfless traits. Despite their different backgrounds, motivations, the team all care about each other like family.

Ease of Play

Blend of RPG, fighting genres. Exploring, upgrading, finding quests, interacting with environment is simple, intuitive. Combat takes getting used to in 3D-arena combat, with players using combos, special moves, evasion requiring fairly precise timing.

Violence

Violence relatively persistent; players use variety of martial arts-style moves, magic abilities, special attacks to defeat foes in head-to-head combat. No blood, gore; majority of moves, damage shown as flashy effects.

Sex
Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Shiness: The Lightning Kingdom is a downloadable action-RPG game. The game's story features strong positive themes, including a focus on friendship, teamwork, and helping those in need. It combines elements on standard role-playing games as well as fighting games. This makes the game relatively easy to play but with a bit of a learning curve to deal with for combat. There's some fantasy and martial arts-style combat as a regular part of the game, though that violence isn't bloody or graphic.

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What's it about?

In SHINESS: THE LIGHTNING KINGDOM, players join Chado and his friends as they sail across the Celestial Islands, the fragmented lands that remain after the planet of Mahera broke apart. The lands aren't the only thing fragmented, though. The kingdoms established on the Celestial Islands are locked in the midst of a massive power struggle, fighting amongst themselves while also dealing with all manner of strange creatures, colossal monsters, and even the undead. After a crash landing on one of the islands, Chado has a chance encounter with Terra, one of the Shiness, mysterious spirits unseen by most. Terra asks Chado for his help in restoring balance to the elements and saving the planet. Not one to back down from a challenge, Chado and his crew choose to fight against the darkness and set forth to reunite the kingdoms, bringing a lasting peace to the world in the process.

Is it any good?

It's never easy to create an entire world from scratch. That's why a lot of RPGs are continuations of popular franchises. To develop something new and unique is no simple task. Shiness: The Lightning Kingdom doesn't just deliver on this; it does so in a way that feels like you're actually a part of an epic adventure unfolding in front of you. From the animated style of the characters to the martial arts action to the mystical plot, Shiness is an anime experience brought to life. And whether you're following the main story or fulfilling any of the numerous side quests, you always feel like you're accomplishing something and you're curious to see what happens next. The only drawback here is that, much like in a really good series, it feels like it ends too soon. From start to finish, you should be able to finish the story in less than 20 hours.

The game seamlessly transitions from the RPG exploration into arena combat when you encounter enemies. Even so, the combat itself can be a little frustrating. While it's a fluid control scheme overall, there's still a lot to learn. Switching from melee attacks to ranged spells to recharging your mana to parrying or dodging incoming attacks all require precise timing. This is especially true when it comes to deflecting enemy attacks. You'll easily get pummeled early on until you get the hang of the timing. Thankfully, you're never really outnumbered, as enemies take you on one at a time. Plus, you'll usually have plenty of ways to heal after a battle. There are also plenty of checkpoints where you can save your progress and heal up as well, so even if you do need to restart, you're never too far off from where you were. All in all, Shiness: The Lightning Kingdom is a fresh yet familiar adventure that's bursting at the seams with style and personality.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about friendship and teamwork. What are some ways that people of different backgrounds can work together and foster friendships?

  • Talk about ways to help those in need. What are some positive ways to help others and to get involved to promote positive changes?

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