Otaku World

Magic Knight Rayearth

Sega / Kodansha / Clamp

Platform ReviewedSega Saturn
GenreAction Role Playing Game
Number of Players1
Multiplayer ValueNone
Skills RequiredProblem Solving, Some Hand-Eye Coordination
Interface DevicesSega Saturn Joypad
Interface DesignPerfect
Game Design and PlayabilityAbsolutely The Best
Type Of FunPerfect RPG Ecstasy
Replay ValueLike most RPG's, little to none
Overall ValueThe Very Best Possible
QualityThe Very Best Possible
The BestUnbelievable beauty, wonderful characters, superb music, fantastic gameplay, perfect design.
The WorstYou will have to fight to get it published in America. I will suggest how.
How much would I be willing to pay for this 150 bucks (but my import version cost 85)


Possibly the most exquisitely beautiful and wondrous Action Role Playing Game made so far. Based on the Anime and Manga of the same name created by Clamp in Japan, Magic Knight Rayearth is grand on a scale beyond your dreams. It is a game that thrills as it amazes, and there is nothing like it in the States. It is a crime against sensibility not to translate it and publish it here.


Hikaru Shidou, Umi Ryuuzaki and Fuu Hououji suddenly find themselves transported to Cefiro, an arcane world in another universe. Summoned by the Guardian Emeraude, the three gorgeous women must save the fragile universe of Cefiro. By using both magic and technomagical abilities and artifacts the Magic Knights, by virtue of being outsiders to the Cefiro realm, may yet be it's salvation.


Magic Knight Rayearth is a game so stunningly captivating, that even untranslated, in Japanese, it can still enthrall. I own over 3600 games, yet Magic Knight Rayearth is the most beautiful RPG I have ever seen. It is better than Secret Of Mana, More captivating than Zelda: A Link To The Past, and even five minutes of Magic Knight Rayearth is more satisfying than most sexual experiences. We are talking truly great here.

The problem with this absolute wonderment, is that you may never, unless you do as I did and buy the import and an adaptor, ever get to play this joy of gaming perfection. You will probably be denied one of the finest works ever created. Why?

Because you, the American Gameplayer, are not considered as intelligent as 8 to 12 year old Japanese schoolgirls.

And the people who think you are so simple are All American Marketing Men. As the vice president of possibly the most well known American game publisher once told me "Americans are not as educated or as intellectual as the Japanese, all the average player wants is a simple game with lots of things to blow up. Americans just are not bright enough to appreciate anything beyond that. We only publish what we know will sell."

You see, Magic Knight Rayearth was designed as an RPG for 8-12 year old Japanese girls. Yet, I assure you, it is more challenging and has a deeper and more complex storyline than any adult-level American RPG.

It is far more entertaining as well. Full voice, unique architecture for every city, dozens of sub-quests, torturous mazes that test even perception itself, strange and wonderful powers, romance, personal diaries for each character, the characters all respond uniquely to events, astounding special effects, creatures that fill not only a whole screen, but in some cases several, swimming, running, pushing, lifting, climbing - you name it and Magic Knight Rayearth has it.

But we are too stupid, you understand, to enjoy this game. We won't buy it. It doesn't have beefy men blowing things up (well, other than entire worlds, of course) or bashing the crap out of each other (well, maybe a little). If you are not mad as hell that you are missing out on this gem, then you have not been paying attention. This is only the tip of the iceberg.

So what can you do?


Who can give it to you?

One possibility is Working Designs, one of the few companies who actually try to give us the good stuff.

Call Working Designs at (916) 243-3417. Tell them that you want them to publish Magic Knight Rayearth.

If you do this, enough of you, they will. They are considering it. Be polite, they are nice folks.

You can write to them too: Working Designs, 18135 Clear Creek Road, Redding, CA. 96001

You might also E-mail the folks at SEGA and give them HELL for not bringing out translations of Japanese RPG's. If enough of you really get on their case, they WILL listen. FLOOD THEM with your demands. No need to be polite with them, they think rather little of your brains.

Otherwise, all you will ever get is more and more bad Doom clones, rip-offs of Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat, and stupid Kill The Monsters And Take Their Gold dungeon hack jobs.

And you will never marvel at the gleaming lands of Cefiro, or enjoy the company of those three incredibly beautiful women, the Magic Knights.

I assure you, that would be a shame.

Reviewed by Jennifer Diane Reitz, Dec. 25, 1995

Jennifer Diane Reitz is a Game Designer and Computer Artist, and one of the founders of Happy Puppy. She is the creator of numerous games and software products, including Boppin' , Shark Chums, Elsewhere, and many others. She has worked for such companies as Activision, Sculptured Software, Epyx, SRI, and Electronic Arts, and founded Accursed Toys. She has been active in the computer gaming industry since it's earliest days. She considers games to be works of artistic merit and achievement, and views computer entertainment as the most important media of our era.