Developer: Kotobuki Solution
Price: $0.99
Version Reviewed: 1.0.2
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 5

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★½☆
Game Controls Rating: ★★★½☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★½☆
Replay Value Rating: ★★★½☆

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆

Currently a mere $0.99 for a good dozen or so hours of gaming, it feels a little churlish to be incredibly critical of End of Aspiration. It might be a JRPG that plays things fairly safe most of the time, but it does offer plenty of things to do, at least.

endofaspiration5With an orphanage that must be saved, trading to be done, oh, and a world to be protected, End of Aspiration certainly has its fair share of RPG cliches. Much of the threat comes from the mysterious Mafia, who are never offered a more original description than that.

It’s all pretty safe, and that trend continues with the combat. Taking the turn-based route, there’s the usual choice of moves comprising of physical and magic attacks, as well as using items to heal up. The addition of summon attacks, involving familiars, adds some variety, although also overpowers the player quite significantly. Random encounters are common throughout many of the dungeons here, and it can get a little tedious. Fortunately, an effective auto-save facility means it’s always possible to jump out of the game for a time without losing any progress. The boss battles are a little more exciting, but they still maintain that safe sheen that exudes from the rest of the game.

endofaspiration1End of Aspiration struggles a little in terms of controls with a virtual d-pad that can prove a little fiddly to manipulate at times, but other than that it’s a quite sound game; if unexceptional. In-app purchases reside for those wanting to unlock new dungeons, something I never felt the urge to do, but they’re not essential to progression.

In a way, the steady level of protection and uncomplicated attitude that emanates throughout the game is exactly what makes End of Aspiration appealing. Such a safe experience turns it into a form of comfort gaming for those after an old school JRPG fix. It might not stick in the mind for any great length of time, but it’s not a bad way to spend a few hours and it’s always simple to dive straight back into for more.

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