Sword and Fairy: Together Forever from eastasiasoft and Sofstar is an action RPG with an impressive presentation based on Chinese lore. Check our Sword and Fairy: Together Forever review!
Enter a realm that blends ancient mythology with traditional Chinese aesthetics in Sword and Fairy: Together Forever, the latest mainline entry in the nearly 27-year-old RPG franchise! Weaving its tale between the three clans of Human, Deity and Demon, Sword and Fairy: Together Forever puts you in command of a memorable party of characters, each with unique personalities, motives, skills, strengths and weaknesses. Only together can they shape the future!
Action-RPG Sword and Fairy: Together Forever from eastasiasoft and Sofstar and is the latest entry in the Sword and Fairyfranchise that has been up and running since 1995 – back then, it was called The Legend of Sword and Fairy. The last game was Sword and Fairy 6 on the PlayStation 4, and this is the first installment to make its way to the PlayStation 5. Even if this game is a direct sequel to Sword and Fairy 6, which was released a few years ago on the PS4, this game can be played as a standalone title.
In Sword and Fairy: Together Forever, you’ll begin by following Yue QingShu, a woman living in a remote Chinese village. The first few hours serve as the introduction to the game’s gameplay mechanics while setting up the base for the game’s story. You start playing as one character as you learn how the game works, and more characters are introduced down the road so that you can have an activate party and switch between them in a gameplay style that felt a bit like Final Fantasy XII on the PlayStation 2.
I liked the battle system that allows you to get close to the enemies or avoid them if you only want to get from point A to point B. Your main playable character is controlled with the left analog stick, attacking with the Square button with regular attacks or by using the Triangle button for a strong attack. Hitting the buttons in succession also unleashes flashy combos that do a lot of damage to enemies, with more combos unlocked as you progress in the game. Each character has special abilities that can be launched at any time by pressing R2 and one extra button between the Circle, Triangle, Square, or X buttons. Each ability does have a cooldown so that they can’t be spammed over and over again. Using abilities is vital to defeating enemies and the stronger bosses you’ll face during your journey.
Outside of the main quest, you’ll be busy with a lot of sidequests that are available for you to take on. They can be found by talking with people around each area, and they are also visible as interrogation marks in the very helpful mini-map you can consult as you play. After a little while, the quests felt a bit generic, being mostly fetching items or people asking you to get rid of monsters.
Speaking of monsters, some of them feel a bit bizarre since the game tries to be as realistic as possible in the visual department, so you’ll get some more realistic-looking enemies alongside angry river rocks come to life or mad sentient fruits. This is to be expected given the game’s fantasy theme and once again reminded me of Final Fantasy XII and subsequent titles that went for a real-time battle system.
There are also Spirits that will join you in your quest. They will be able to help you in battle, and they can level up when you feed them with special Spirit Fruit. Leveling up your Spirits will award you with Gift Points that can then provide much-needed HP and MP boost for your party, which will allow you to take on more powerful enemies.
On the presentation side, the game looks amazing and runs at a smooth 60 frames per second. I was impressed by the trees and the foliage that reacts to the wind, along with the textures and dynamic lighting that even makes it possible to see the moon reflected in water spots on the ground at night. The shadows were also good, but one area that was a bit distracting was the pop-in of objects as you walked through areas. On the PlayStation 5 version of the game, there is nearly no loading, thanks to the PS5’s NVMe. Maybe the pop-in is something that can be patched to improve things?
While the game is fully voice-acted, the voices are in Chinese with English subtitles, so that’s something to keep in mind. I thought that the default text size was too small when read on my 55″ TV, but the good news is that it’s possible to increase the size. There are some vibration effects, but the developer has used the PlayStation 4 DualShock vibration effects instead of the new available on the DualSense.
On the trophies side, Sword and Fairy: Together Forever has a great trophy list with 37 trophies, split into 20 bronze trophies, 13 silver trophies, and 4 gold trophies. None of the trophies are missable, and if you’re a trophy hunter, you’ll be happy to learn that this game is also Cross-Buy between the PS4 and PS5 versions, giving you two full trophies lists for your efforts. Most of the trophies are awarded for progressing through the story, defeating the bosses, and learning all the abilities available. The ones that you can perhaps not get during your initial run can be obtained later as you take on the bosses again.
Sword and Fairy: Together Forever is a beautiful action RPG that has a lot to offer and a lengthy story. I liked the presentation and the dynamic battle system. Some of the side-quests felt too generic for me fetching and kill quests, but this one is easy to recommend to players looking for a great game in an impressive world. The game is a Cross-Buy release, so your $39.99 purchase will give you both the PS4 and the PS5 versions of the game at no extra cost.
This Sword and Fairy: Together Forever review is based on a PlayStation copy provided by eastasiasoft.