Prelude to the Fallen follows the story of a young man with no memories who awakens in a strange world, and is taken in by a tribe of kindhearted villagers. He is raised as one of their own, eventually receiving the name “Hakuowlo.” When neighboring nations begin to encroach on his village, Hakuoro rises up against the tyrannical invaders, setting off on an unforgettable journey that lives on in the songs of legend.
All together Utawarerumono is a lengthy game, and while I usually advocate for games to be shorter, in the particular case of this series, I do think the narrative justifies the length and experience that it’s looking to share.
Utawarerumono: Prelude to the Fallen gives western players the missing piece to this almost 20-year-old story. The updated visuals and balance of narrative and battles creates an experience that’s more approachable to new fans, but still true to the series.
Utawarerumono: Prelude to the Fallen is yet another port of Utawarerumono for Japanese fans, but it’s the first time in nearly 20 years that the first chapter of this iconic hybrid visual novel trilogy is playable in English. A unique world and unforgettable characters are at the heart of this game, but they’re complemented by gorgeous artwork, addictive battles, and incredible music. It drags in the middle act, but once that final act ends and the credits roll, you’ll barely remember the rough edges of this otherwise fantastic experience.
Prelude to the Fallen is a solid introduction to the Utawarerumono universe so if simple SRPG battles and visual novels appeal to you then this is one game that you’ll definitely want to play.
Utawarerumono: Prelude to the Fallen is an ideal opportunity to get into the series and learn what it’s all about. It won’t be for all; those unable to deal with the slow pace of visual novels will get unstuck in the many events that try and build relationships at the expense of driving the plot, something that is almost omnipresent throughout both this game and the Mask duology. However, for those who enjoy winding down with a deep story and some enjoyable tactical combat, the game provides that in spades.
It’s certainly not the deepest Tactical RPG that I’ve played, nor the absolute best Visual Novel that I’ve read, but Utawarerumono: Prelude to the Fallen brings more than enough to the table to be worthy of your time. It may have taken entirely too long for the entire series to make its way over, but I’m glad that it has – and that more and more players will have the chance to start it. Utawarerumono is a great, charming series, and one that is more than deserving of a closer look. This remake might not stand the test of time quite as much as its sequels, but don’t let that stop you from getting into the series – it’s one that I can’t recommend enough.