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JadeDragon's reviews and playing tips: Pocket PC games

Arvale: Journey of Illusions by PDAMill
Reviewed November 2004 by Marc Morgan

Arvale: Journey of Illusions is a fresh new RPG game from the many time award-winning game developer PDAMill. Usually, every PDAMill title released features high quality graphics, music, and sound effects, and this game should be the same, considering it is one year of hard work by three people!

The story goes like this: a long time ago, Dragons and Humans lived in harmony together. Eventually, the dragons started to teach the humans small amounts of magic at a time. This made the Dark Dragon angry. The Dark Dragon went on a rampage to kill every person who knew magic and every dragon that taught it. A hero appeared, put the dragon to sleep, and disappeared. The dragon woke every 20 years, and a new hero would appear each time. The dragon is about to wake again. You play the role of Duncan Forsythe, a young gardener who is told he is to be the next hero. Arvale is a turn-based RPG game much like Final Fantasy. To increase your character’s stats and skills, there is an experience-level based system. To level up, you need to get the required amount of experience from fighting enemies. After every time you gain a level, the amount of experience required increases. To survive in the game, you also need to buy weapons, armor, magic, and healing items. You may also need to stay in inns to revive yourself after combat. You get the money to do all of this from defeating enemies or selling items. The armor and weapons you buy also have a limit of how many times you can use them, so you will need to replace them often.

The controls in Arvale: Journey of Illusion are simple and easy to learn. To move your character, you either press the direction on the D-Pad on your device, or tap where you want to go. If you want to enter a door, talk to a person, read a sign, etc. you press the use button at the bottom of the screen if it is flashing, or the action button on your device. To check your stats you press Stat. To access the menu, you press menu. The controls are laid out perfectly for an RPG game.

The graphics in Arvale worked out great for this style of game. The colors are crisp, clear, and appealing to the eye. Whenever someone speaks, a speech bubble pops up and the character’s name and close up show, and the graphics shown are very appealing, and there are fade in/fade out effects. The bird’s eye view in Arvale was a good perspective to use because you can see everything that happens around you. In addition to all this, there are over 2000 graphics in the game! Without a doubt, the graphics in Arvale: Journey of Illusion live up to the PDAMill standard.

The sound effects and music are also amazing. There was 45 minutes of music composed for Arvale and about 17 tracks. The music suits what is going on, from in towns to exploring the map, in battle, etc. There are sound effects for everything from opening doors to using your sword, winning a battle, etc. Overall, I was impressed by the sound, and it really added to the entire game experience.

With the release of Arvale: Journey of Illusion, PDAMill had created another great game and I would not be surprised if they win yet another award (or more) for it. They combined a great storyline, graphics, and an easy to control interface into an awesome RPG game. For all you RPG fans, this is a great game for you to play. It is also a great game to play for people who have never played an RPG game.

Playing Hints and Tips

  • Try to level up a lot at the start, as it will pay off later.
  • Buy as many items as possible before leaving a town.


screen shot



Ratings (scale of 1 to 5):


The graphics suited the RPG game perfectly. Everything was easy to see and appealing to the eye.


There is 45 minutes of music for the game, and it is great quality. The sound effects were also great.

Fun Meter

This game is fun for anybody, but even more fun for those who are fans of RPG games.


Arvale is fairly easy to get into, and hard to put down. It does not usually get frustrating when you get stuck, either.


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