Warning: may contain spoilers.
For a game that came out in 1998, Bof III
, in my opinion, still stands out well today.
First, there's the story. Sure, it's still basically "adventurers travel around the world killing monsters until they find the Final Boss" but there are significant details. One is that you start playing *as children* and then continue as near-adults- you literally get to see them grow as characters. Second, many of the bosses you kill have tragic backgrounds, making you realize the world isn't just Black and White. And finally, there are some details that are never completely explained - such as whether the Final Boss was right in her actions or not- that keep you thinking even after the game is over.
There's also the fact that humans live with animal-people *in perfect peace* unlike so many other settings. There's even an interspecies marriage!! Also, the Schizo Tech
featured is, for once, explained (at a later point in the game).
In playstyle, there's the Dragon-Gene system, where you slowly gain different dragon forms -very inventive ones- by accumulating "dragon genes" and combining them in different ways. It doesn't have much to do with the main story, but its still fun. Some of the minigames -such as having to help some fairies build and maintain their village- are pretty unique too.
And in graphics, while dated by today's standards, they managed to create some surprisingly good Anime-style sprites- no Super Deformed
characters here! Their designs -especially Peco the Onion Boy's- where pretty good too.
Overall, I'd say that the best thing about Bo FIII
was how every part of the game just felt unique, like you were playing a different game with a different atmosphere as time goes by- but not in an abrupt way. From the whimsy of kids trying to earn their town's respect to struggling for your life in a faraway desert, playing Bo FIII
is still a unique experience.