As mentioned in our review of Ecco the Dolphin and Space Harrier II, we're glad that Sega is bringing these classic games to the App Store, but action packed platformers and arcade games of days of yore combined with mediocre emulator performance on older devices and touch controls is not a good mix. Today Sega gave us a sneak peek of their upcoming classic RPG Shining Force running in this same emulator, and it is amazing how much the entire experience is improved when you're not playing a game that is based on quick reactions, high frame rates, or precise controls.

Shining Force is a tactical RPG with turn-based battles that take place on square grids. Originally released in the USA in 1993, Shining Force is about as classic as you get when it comes to a Sega RPG. Not only has it been included in various classic game collections that Sega has released on numerous platforms over the years, but it also saw a remake in 2004 for the Gameboy Advance. This is the original Genesis version of the game, set in the land of Rune where you play a silent protagonist who recruits allies to the Shining Force to ultimately prevent the evil Darksol from resurrecting a Dark Dragon, destroying the world, and doing all those other things which have since become entirely cliche for RPG villains to do.

While Shining Force may seem a little basic if you haven't played it before and your first exposure to turn based strategy games was Final Fantasy Tactics or later games, Shining Force has everything it needs for a great old school RPG. Each character has their own class (and personality which is often revealed throughout the story) along with special abilities. As you battle your units level up, and my favorite feature of Shining Force always was that there never really is a game over. If your party falls in battle you retain all your experience earned and just try again. Of course there are all kinds of items to buy, treasure to find, gear to equip, and everything else you'd expect as well.

According to Sega, Shining Force is set to be released this Thursday. If you've been looking for a game to supplement the two Final Fantasy games that were released not too long ago, look no further.

  • Chris

    Why the hell don't developers port games people actually want to see???

    • Eli Hodapp

      What.

      • Oneiromancer

        Seriously. This was a great game. I have too many other games I need to play to really consider picking this up, but I'm sure there are a lot of people that are stoked to see Shining Force being ported.

    • http://RKRigney.com Ryan Rigney

      Don't you talk that way about the love of my life

    • Maeks

      Shining Force was the only reason I was looking forward to that non-existant emulator they were planning a while back, so this is great!

    • Ahiru

      why don't people like you simply commit suicide?

      oh you were just trolling... right..? RIGHT?!?!!?121121111

    • edheaded

      Yeah! How dare they release one of THE GREATEST 16BIT GAMES EVER.

  • Chris

    Why the hell don't developers port games people actually want to see???

    • Eli Hodapp

      What.

      • Oneiromancer

        Seriously. This was a great game. I have too many other games I need to play to really consider picking this up, but I'm sure there are a lot of people that are stoked to see Shining Force being ported.

    • http://RKRigney.com Ryan Rigney

      Don't you talk that way about the love of my life

    • Maeks

      Shining Force was the only reason I was looking forward to that non-existant emulator they were planning a while back, so this is great!

    • Ahiru

      why don't people like you simply commit suicide?

      oh you were just trolling... right..? RIGHT?!?!!?121121111

    • edheaded

      Yeah! How dare they release one of THE GREATEST 16BIT GAMES EVER.

  • dumas1000

    Phantasy Star IV is by far the greatest RPG that Sega produced in the 8-bit/16-bit era. Although, the localization was, shall we say, campy. Still, Shining Force can't hold a candle to it. I might actually consider buying Phantasy Star, and I've never even thought about any of these emulator games.

    • Icepulse

      That's really a question of what style of combat mechanic you prefer. I think SF is WAY better than PS, simply because I think that the combat in PS games, in the "fun" department, is on par with eating drywall.

  • dumas1000

    Phantasy Star IV is by far the greatest RPG that Sega produced in the 8-bit/16-bit era. Although, the localization was, shall we say, campy. Still, Shining Force can't hold a candle to it. I might actually consider buying Phantasy Star, and I've never even thought about any of these emulator games.

    • Icepulse

      That's really a question of what style of combat mechanic you prefer. I think SF is WAY better than PS, simply because I think that the combat in PS games, in the "fun" department, is on par with eating drywall.

  • Brandon

    If this is as fun as vay... I'll be hooked for a while.

    • Ahiru

      nothing to do with vay, no offense but vay was just "meh"... and btw this is a turn-based strategy (with some JRPG elements), not pen-and-paper turn RPG like vay and FF series...

      • Chinito77

        Well, it would be nice if they updated the visuals like Vay. Nothing too fancy but a little facelift would be nice.

  • Brandon

    If this is as fun as vay... I'll be hooked for a while.

    • Ahiru

      nothing to do with vay, no offense but vay was just "meh"... and btw this is a turn-based strategy (with some JRPG elements), not pen-and-paper turn RPG like vay and FF series...

      • Chinito77

        Well, it would be nice if they updated the visuals like Vay. Nothing too fancy but a little facelift would be nice.

  • Zonko

    Interesting, but they should have ported the superior Mega CD/Sega CD version. Of course to do that, would have actually required some energy, which is something Sega seem to have been devoid of these past 10 years or so.

    • psv

      The MegaCD/SegaCD game wasn't superior. It was a graphic update to the SMS versions of Shining Force Hajya I,II and III. There was no overworld to explore in those games - just straight battles and the storyline was told through cutscenes. It did have an orchestral soundtrack, which was definitely nice.

      Hajya was fairly forgettable.

  • Zonko

    Interesting, but they should have ported the superior Mega CD/Sega CD version. Of course to do that, would have actually required some energy, which is something Sega seem to have been devoid of these past 10 years or so.

    • psv

      The MegaCD/SegaCD game wasn't superior. It was a graphic update to the SMS versions of Shining Force Hajya I,II and III. There was no overworld to explore in those games - just straight battles and the storyline was told through cutscenes. It did have an orchestral soundtrack, which was definitely nice.

      Hajya was fairly forgettable.

  • Skamando

    I absolutely love this game, one of the first RPGs I ever played, and probably the first strategy RPG I ever played. I just wish SEGA would get outta this ridiculous phase of porting games so awfully...

  • Skamando

    I absolutely love this game, one of the first RPGs I ever played, and probably the first strategy RPG I ever played. I just wish SEGA would get outta this ridiculous phase of porting games so awfully...

  • Eric

    I want Shining Force 2!!! But I guess this will have to do for now.

  • Eric

    I want Shining Force 2!!! But I guess this will have to do for now.

  • http://www.rustysabre.com/ Eric

    Now we're talking. Although I'd rather see a brand new chapter in this saga, I'll take this one none the less.

  • http://www.rustysabre.com/ Eric

    Now we're talking. Although I'd rather see a brand new chapter in this saga, I'll take this one none the less.

  • ecco6t9

    Or Sega could of made the effort to port/secretly emulate the more superior GBA version.

  • ecco6t9

    Or Sega could of made the effort to port/secretly emulate the more superior GBA version.

  • theDaniel

    One more? ...I know better emulators for the iPhone....

    Gimme the new upcoming Sonic and we are talking!

    @ SEGA: Please stop this low budget stupidness. I remember the times when you where actually created games..

    • theDaniel

      "@ SEGA: Please stop this low budget stupidness. I remember the times when you where actually creating games.."

      Sssh!..

  • theDaniel

    One more? ...I know better emulators for the iPhone....

    Gimme the new upcoming Sonic and we are talking!

    @ SEGA: Please stop this low budget stupidness. I remember the times when you where actually created games..

    • theDaniel

      "@ SEGA: Please stop this low budget stupidness. I remember the times when you where actually creating games.."

      Sssh!..

  • Malohkan

    Shining Force 1 and Shining Force 2 were my absolute favorite Sega games. However... I can play them with an emulator for free with the ability to fast forward... I don't know if I have any interest in buying this when I know I won't get anything other than the plain game!

    • JCat

      Agreed - their prices are generally stupid because you're paying for old, non-enhanced games, unless you call the added transparent controls for iphone the big enhancement. The Shining series is great, but man, I think everyone including embryos have played it some point or another on a free emulator. At least revise the visuals or add new sounds for God's sake. Oh wait, this is Sega.

      • psv

        They did for the GBA (Shining Force Advance). If you haven't played it, don't. Be glad that this is the original they're bringing to the iphone.

  • Malohkan

    Shining Force 1 and Shining Force 2 were my absolute favorite Sega games. However... I can play them with an emulator for free with the ability to fast forward... I don't know if I have any interest in buying this when I know I won't get anything other than the plain game!

    • JCat

      Agreed - their prices are generally stupid because you're paying for old, non-enhanced games, unless you call the added transparent controls for iphone the big enhancement. The Shining series is great, but man, I think everyone including embryos have played it some point or another on a free emulator. At least revise the visuals or add new sounds for God's sake. Oh wait, this is Sega.

      • psv

        They did for the GBA (Shining Force Advance). If you haven't played it, don't. Be glad that this is the original they're bringing to the iphone.

  • psv

    I'm glad this is the original and not that godawful GBA remake. That game was broken in so many ways.

  • psv

    I'm glad this is the original and not that godawful GBA remake. That game was broken in so many ways.

  • Diz

    Hey look, the first decent game release in two months for iPhone. Finally, something nostalgic, fun, and still relevent.

    I have grown tired of the casual mindless junk that's been coming out this summer... now let's see if this holds me off long enough for the new SimCity to finally come out. Which EA will continue to market for like it's coming out tomorrow but is probably 14 years off.

  • Diz

    Hey look, the first decent game release in two months for iPhone. Finally, something nostalgic, fun, and still relevent.

    I have grown tired of the casual mindless junk that's been coming out this summer... now let's see if this holds me off long enough for the new SimCity to finally come out. Which EA will continue to market for like it's coming out tomorrow but is probably 14 years off.

  • Coral

    So is this similar in gameplay to Fire Emblem? I love those games and it feels like this could fill the gap.

  • Coral

    So is this similar in gameplay to Fire Emblem? I love those games and it feels like this could fill the gap.

  • Loner

    I am finally happy about a game SEGA is releasing for the iphone

  • Loner

    I am finally happy about a game SEGA is releasing for the iphone

  • Eric

    I thought this was so awesome until my brain reminded me that this will most likely cost like 6.99$ or something retarded. Will not pay more than 4 bones for this, since I can just play this joint on a free emulator.

  • Eric

    I thought this was so awesome until my brain reminded me that this will most likely cost like 6.99$ or something retarded. Will not pay more than 4 bones for this, since I can just play this joint on a free emulator.

  • Acidbottle

    never played this one but by all accounts its a good un.

    will give it a whirl.

  • Acidbottle

    never played this one but by all accounts its a good un.

    will give it a whirl.

  • FinalGamerAC

    For those of you who say that there are better emulators for the iOS do you enjoy lying to yourself? Granted there are better emulators but in this regard I assume you mean ZodTTD's genesis4iphone which is absolutely horrid. In fact I tried to play Shining Force in it yesterday and the static bubbling sound alone started to give me a headache, not to mention the fact that it can't even be played fullscreen. The emulator its self can't even play a good number of games I have tried at full speed. I will agree that Sega's emulator isn't perfect but it is better than Zod's, he spreads his efforts much to thin. I would probably use "Ultimate Genesis" if it ever comes to light. I'll probably buy this when it comes out tomorrow.

    • Bruteoutlawz

      So true, zodttd's emu is terrible. people are always complaining about sega's emulator but ive hardly had any problems with them( streets of rage is buggy). zodttd's snes emu is a bit better, donkey kong 2 almost runs at full speed.

  • FinalGamerAC

    For those of you who say that there are better emulators for the iOS do you enjoy lying to yourself? Granted there are better emulators but in this regard I assume you mean ZodTTD's genesis4iphone which is absolutely horrid. In fact I tried to play Shining Force in it yesterday and the static bubbling sound alone started to give me a headache, not to mention the fact that it can't even be played fullscreen. The emulator its self can't even play a good number of games I have tried at full speed. I will agree that Sega's emulator isn't perfect but it is better than Zod's, he spreads his efforts much to thin. I would probably use "Ultimate Genesis" if it ever comes to light. I'll probably buy this when it comes out tomorrow.

    • Bruteoutlawz

      So true, zodttd's emu is terrible. people are always complaining about sega's emulator but ive hardly had any problems with them( streets of rage is buggy). zodttd's snes emu is a bit better, donkey kong 2 almost runs at full speed.

  • ZERombie

    Maybe this was asked, but will this or any of the games be ported for the iPad? Anyone know how the blown versions look on th iPad?

  • ZERombie

    Maybe this was asked, but will this or any of the games be ported for the iPad? Anyone know how the blown versions look on th iPad?

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  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1orNngJZRcQ mark

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