Final Fantasy Friendship. Suikoden Kindness. If you want a quick description of what Rainbow Billy: The Curse of the Leviathan is all about, those are a good start. While it’s classified as a “2.5D Adventure-Puzzle-Platformer” on official marketplaces, Rainbow Billy is an RPG at its core, thanks to its team-building mechanics and a “battle” system worthy of those vaunted franchises. The exploration and platforming elements do add an air of adventure, but those moments aren’t as smooth sailing thanks to some weird technical issues. The issues won’t ruin the game though, as the entire experience is wrapped in a rainbow-colored warmth that’s hard to describe. It has a constant “glass half full” attitude, playing out through dialogue between characters that mirrors a lot of real-world situations. The message alone makes the game worth checking out.
You play as Rainbow Billy, a denizen of the World of Imagination. A massive water-faring dragon called Leviathan lays a terrible curse on the land, draining it of its color, and Billy must board his tugboat–named the Friend-Ship–and sail across multiple islands to solve puzzles, make new friends, and restore the world’s vibrant colors. Joining Billy on the journey is Rodrigo, a sentient fishing rod-looking creature that helps Billy get around the world through swinging, gliding, and more. The main focus of the game–and the idea that sets Rainbow Billy apart–is its “battle” system. You’ll see that words like “battle” and “confront” are in quotes throughout the review, and there’s a reason: there’s no “battle” to be had. Instead, Billy and the friends they recruit are attempting to restore the color in each black-and-white creature they “confront,” and they do it through dialogue and simple minigames.
Here’s how it works: You’ll choose from recruited friends and place them on the battlefield in designated lanes, assigning one of three colored shapes to each friend. Once these “battle lines” are formed, minigames begin based on the lead creature in a lane. Some involve a slot machine-esque game where rainbow stars must stop on a line, others require button presses in a certain sequence. Upon winning a minigame, the colors then travel to the “enemy,” filling in any corresponding blank shapes above their heads. Enemies will fight back, depleting Billy’s Morale meter, and an empty meter means a failed battle that must be restarted. Fill all the shapes in, however, and voila! A new friend is recruited.
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Source: Game Spot Mashup