If you want a comparison of Blue Reflection
, just imagine the Persona
series. Players take control of Hinako, a quiet high school girl who is resuming her studies. As Hinako, players will get to experience the high school life at an all-girls school and help her to regain her hopes for the future.
Hinako has two places to go daily: school and the Common. Sheíll start the day by attending school, where you will sometimes see a cutscene. At school, players can interact with other students and build your relationship with certain ones, complete missions, buy things, or just explore the school. Exploration isnít the most fun option because Hinako is slow. I mean, sheís so slow itís ridiculous. I can understand why, given her circumstances, but still. She has such a funny running animation that goes so perfectly with the speed sheís traveling, I often ended up just running around for fun. Ok, enough bashing on Hinako, sheís still great. Anyway, you can pretty much do anything you want within a day since there arenít timed activities, but there are a limited number of things to do in a day. Once you run out of things to do or simply get bored, you can go home and go on to the next day. The Common is the dungeon of the game. The Common has several different areas which correspond to the various emotions we may feel. In the beginning, you can only traverse a specific targetís Common area, but youíll quickly unlock the ability to go to and from the Common as you please. Itís real convenient to hear that battle music.
Hinako's accident left her unable to run or move as freely as she used to. Thankfully, she gets to enjoy herself to the fullest in battle. Combat in Blue Reflection is turn-based, with a characterís speed usually deciding when theyíll end up moving at the start of battle. The turn bar at the top of the screen will show who gets to move next by having each characterís portrait scroll to the middle of the bar. After performing an action, that characterís portrait will be placed somewhere else on the bar and they must wait to perform another action. Before initiating battle, you can press (Square) to strike in the field. If you connect with the enemy, youíll gain the advantage going into battle. Youíll be in charge of making sure Hinako and her two sidekicks get the job done in battle. Youíre allowed to perform one of several actions per turn, with the main options being attack, support, or escaping. Attack combines both your normal attack and your special attacks. Your normal attack costs nothing to use, but special attacks cost a varying amount of MP to cast. If you have insufficient MP, youíll be unable to use any special attacks. The MP and HP of your team will be shown at the bottom next to their portrait. Support options allow you to heal your teammates or cast buffs and debuffs. These also require MP to use. Escape is pretty self-explanatory. Use this if you feel outmatched or you just donít feel like battling.
Battling is fun, but having your team get wiped isnít. A good way to prevent this is by making your characters stronger! By completing missions and other activities, youíll sometimes be rewarded with growth points. Each character receives a growth point from rewards and players can then distribute them between the characterís four stats: Attack, Defense, Support, and Technical. Attack increases your unitís attack stat, Defense increases the unitís HP and Defense stats, Support increases Luck and MP, and Technical increases the unitís Agility. By distributing growth points, your unit will also increase in level, which in turn increases the unitís stats by a set amount. In addition, once you get one of the four stats up to a certain level, youíll gain special skills as well. You can check the special skills learned by pressing (Square) on the growth page. Stronger opponents and bosses require you to get stronger, otherwise youíll run into trouble.
Ever met someone who has a smartphone, but has no idea how to use it? Yeah, thatís Hinako. Smartphones arenít a big deal in Blue Reflection, but youíll often see your classmates using them. By pressing (R1), Hinako can bring out her smartphone and check messages, play a monster game, access the jukebox, or change the wallpaper on her smartphone. The messages allow you to interact with your close friends, even if you donít want to run all over and find them. You canít really do much besides tell Hinako to reply, though. Sheíll say whatever sheíd like and youíre left to read the conversation. Honestly, the smartphone thing is interesting, but I wouldíve liked some more interactivity on my end rather than just leaving it to Hinako. The conversations are pretty interesting regardless, though.