Crimson Shroud has a very specific audience
eShop releases rarely get any serious burn on high-profile gaming sites, so big ups to Penny Arcade for dedicating a comic to this niche, tabletop-style RPG from Nex Entertainment and Yasumi Matsuno (Final Fantasy Tactics, Vagrant Story).
Those of you who follow us on Twitter — which you all should just for the extra, goofy links we post — likely saw me lamenting that the game is “kind of not fun.” I know many others have enjoyed Crimson Shroud, and that there are certain expectations you need to go in with to appreciate the title, but it wasn’t for me.
I wasn’t a fan of the limited character customization outside of equipment upgrades and skills you learned every few battles, the two hours I spent killing skeletons in Chapter 2 to get a random drop, and other quirks that you could probably blame on Crimson Shroud being a short adventure rather than a full RPG.
My primary disappointment, I think, was I wanted more tabletop/pen-and-paper trappings in the game — tactical positioning during combat, opportunities to progress by using non-combat skills, etc. If that doesn’t sound like a big loss to you, though, don’t let me stop you from picking up Crimson Shroud. The story should meet the high expectations of Matsuno fans, and it’s really a special release that’s unlike any other RPG out there.