I am not the kind of person that plays JRPGs, but even then, Lawmage Academy kept me engaged for long enough.
If you are reading this, chances are you’ve at least some amount of familiarity with Harry Potter and his ever-famous school, Hogwarts. You might’ve low-key wanted to go there, experience all the magic and wizardry. Well, it’s not quite Hogwarts, but something pretty similar.
Lawmage Academy is a top-down RPG with classic turn-based combat elements. At first sight, it’s just like any of those RPG Maker JRPG games, cute anime boys and girls, magic, wizardry, potions, turn-based combat and all that stuff. But this is much more polished and will have you hooked on playing the game.
I am not the kind of person that plays JRPGs, but even then, Lawmage Academy kept me engaged for long enough. That must be more than enough for anyone looking to try out the game.
Lawmage Academy Brings Back Memories
As you boot into the game, you are greeted with a usual menu screen that looks a lot “anime”-ish, something expected of these kinds of games. As soon as you startup, you are greeted by a message that asks if you’d want to have an introduction into the plot. It’s the same old plot with a magical country, wizards training younger people “high-level magic” to fight for their country and all those things. Then the actual game starts.
A book greets you and a small character creation plays out. Then it asks you for a name, and that’s where nostalgia hit me. I don’t know if all RPG Maker games have this way of typing in stuff, but this game had an on-screen keyboard much like the ones in the old NES games. I had a small MP3 player back in the day that could play NES games. This small aspect reminded me of those years. Ahh, nostalgia.
No Sorting Hats at Lawmage Academy
The Academy has four houses, Foxhelm, Drakewood, Vissage and Soulstice. Instead of having a sorting hat choose your house for you, your “guide” book will ask you questions. I did a quick playthrough twice, but I couldn’t see how any of the questions except the last affected the sorting. I could be wrong. Cheers for the effort, brought my memories back to Daggerfall where there were similar questions to pick among the characters.
Make Friends and Attend Classes
One thing I liked is that you can go around the academy and explore different things and make new friends. You are given a friend at start, Ein, but there are others to befriend and bring on adventures. Do side quests and choose wisely to help others out of danger and you’ll soon have many friends to go on adventures with.
Another thing is the classes. After all, this is a school for mages. So, you are supposed to attend classes and read books to expand upon your skills. There are all kinds of ways to gain knowledge. Attending classes are just one of them. Some classes are available only during some days and some others are available almost always. But no worries, get a “forbidden book” from the book dealer and you can easily use more advanced spells and potions.
I enjoyed the turn-based combat with well-balanced gameplay. At first, the enemies have lower health, but they are too common and spawn very frequently. This way, you can easily run out of health. You aren’t challenged until a fire-spirit comes up. The fire spirit has huge HP bar but is prone to most spell damages. I kept spamming enaqua on the spirit and thanks to the five potions that I crafted at Potioncraft 101 class, I had plenty of health to take on the spirit. However, do note that on my first playthrough, I chose the boy character and I could learn the enburn spell, but on my second playthrough, I picked the girl character and was asked to learn the enaqua spell. If you have more affinity for fire, try choosing the boy character on character selection.
Lawmage Academy has expanded my perspectives into JRPGs, something I mostly overlook. The game was fun and engaging with interesting characters and stories. This game distances itself from the stigma associated with tons of other RPG Maker games on Steam with its highly polished looks and sounds. A very solid game experience. You can find the game on Steam.
If you liked this article on Lawmage Academy, be sure to check out Ambition: A Minuet in Power by our editor, Ecoest.