Dark Savior for the Sega Saturn is a spiritual successor to Landstalker: The Treasures of King Nole for the Sega Genesis. Dark Savior shares Landstalker's isometric viewpoint and Legend of Zelda styled adventuring aspects. Climax decided to include a fighting game styled battle system that allows the player to capture their opponents and use them in battle.
One major feature of Dark Savior is that it included a unique parallel story system that allowed players to alter the story by arriving to certain events at specific times. For instance, if the player is able to reach the captain's quarters before the main villain in the game's opening sequence, the captain would be saved and main villain killed, thus altering the whole story. This feature not only explored different aspects of the plot and characters, but also enhanced the replay value of the game.
The story begins on a ship heading to Jailers Island to turn in Bilan. Garian is informed by a ship mate that Bilan has escaped. He also finds a mysterious Blue Rose that seems somewhat familiar.
Garian and his bird partner, Jack make there was to the captains deck to find Bilan is there. Depending on the time taken, the captain is either dead or alive.
Parallel 1: 4 minutesGarian find the captian killed by Bilan and fights him. Bilan escapes towards Jailers Island. Garian comes after him.
Parallel 2: 3-4 MinutesGarian gets there in time to see the Captian fending off Bilan. He then kills Bilan and goes to Jailers Island seeking the Diary of Wooda.
Parallel 5: If Garian loses to Bilan, he is killled, and sent to a purgatory where he faces characters from all the parallels
Parallel 3: 3 Minutes and under Garian finds Bilan and locks him out for the safety of the ship. He then goes after him.
Parallel 4 begins after Parallel 3's completion.
The gameplay in Dark Savior is unique. For most of the game, It is viewed in a isometric angle, this is used for portions in which Garian must roam around a town talking to various NPCs. This is also used for the sections which involve platforming puzzles.
When in battle, the game shifts to a simple 2D fighting game with the same isometric viewpoint. You can also fight with monsters captured from previous fights. There are also moments that take place in a mine cart, and have a different 3D viewpoint with a shifting camera.
Dark Savior received mediocre reviews by critics, but maintains a small, cult following on the internet.
In 1999, Climax developed a spin-off of Landstalker: The Treasures of King Noble called Time Stalkers (Climax Landers in Japan) for the Sega Dreamcast. Unlike the two previous games, Time Stalkers eschewed the action based combat for a turn based system.
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