Shining Ark’s casual difficulty mode and password bread recipes

Shining Ark, the latest Shining game in the franchise came out in Japan today for the Sony PSP. As you would expect, lots of information has started to come out, like the fact that the game will have difficulty settings like ‘Standard’ and ‘Casual’. This has been a new trend in RPGs, hoping to catch audiences that thought JRPG’s where too hard, who now can enjoy the game on casual. The game allows you to pick your difficulty at the start, choosing either won’t affect item drops or storyline. Best part is that you can scale the difficulty back whenever you want from the start menu.

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Above shows the difference between casual and standard. Notice that the right screen is in casual mode, notice that you, the hero, have more turns compared to the standard difficulty in the left. It starts the same, you get two turns then the villain gets his, but in casual difficulty it then gives you three turns instead of two. If you played many RPGs, those extra turns make a whole world of difference. Not to mention casual mode also has you take less damage, that is also making the game way easier.


So what about this baking password thing? 


In Shining Ark they allow you to bake bread, which can then be eaten to restore your HP and other negative status effects. The thing is the game has a lot of breads for you to make and to get those recipes you will need a password. So where will these passwords be? I found this part to be quite brilliant really, they will be thrown into magazines like Famitsu and Dengeki Playstation. Honestly, why an RPG maker hasn’t done the equivalent  of this in America, probably with codes in unhealthy foods like Mountain Dew is beyond me.

So you imported the game and can’t get Japanese magazines?  Well all future passwords will be shared here.


Shining Ark isn’t the only game to use passwords on PSP, Valkyria Chronicles and Phantasy Star Portable 2 also used a nostalgic password system. As for a western release, I wouldn’t hold my breath since the PSP has never done well over here and we already have the Playstation Vita released. Maybe if there is enough online presence they will consider releasing it digital only? That would be nice, people will be able to play it on Vita and PSP.


5 responses to “Shining Ark’s casual difficulty mode and password bread recipes

  1. Sharky says:

    This actually looks… Quite good.
    Gameplay looks like it uses the Valkyria Chronicles system. Which I like.

    I wish they would bring back Skies of Arcadia on the VC Canvas engine… Man that would be sweet.

  2. Skateboard says:

    How much I would love SEGA if ALL SEGA games are released worldwide and we would never have to worry about localization anymore… never ever! T_T

  3. Trippled says:

    Ever since Media.Vision has done the games with Shining Blade onwards, they seem pretty decent.

    Very Valkyria Chronicles like, with more actiony hand to hand combat.

  4. inthesky says:

    Huh. I don’t follow the new era of Shining series entries much (PSP series) or the franchise at all, but I remember reading a couple impressions that previous games weren’t that difficult to begin with.

  5. Adam says:

    Anyone else tired of Sega whoring out the “shining” name, releasing anything BUT an entry into the shining force series? I guess there’s a big market for this in Japan. I guess the Japanese don’t want another shining force game – zanen ne.

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