The Suikoden Series is an old Japanese role playing game that was originally createdby Konami’s Yoshitaka Muraymata until his departure in 2002 and before the release Suikoden III and on. The series is loosely based on a classical Chinese novel, Shui Hu Zhuan by Shi Naian. Suikoden, and comes from the Japanese rendering of the title.
The Suikoden franchise has been developing games since 1995 and evolved from 2D graphics to 3D graphics as the Playstation jumped to the Playstation II.
Each game centers on the same relative theme; politics, war, friendship and destiny, as well as the overlying mystical following of runes and the importance of the 27 True Runes and their
destinies on the world.
In each game the player is the carrier of one of these 27 True Runes and must gather 108 Stars of Destiny, found in 108 collectable protagonists throughout the game. In the games, the player takes control of a battle party, maxing out at 6. The other 5 characters can be freely chosen by the main character unless the game otherwise demands. The player can fight in 3 main battle modes; basic, where the main character fights in a turn-based battle, one-on-one duel, where the player faces off with a main opponent and must choose the correct attacks to best defend or attack their opponent, and strategic, where the player controls Army units and must win a tactical battle. Followers that die in these pivotal battles will remain dead, for better or worse to the game’s story. Gathering all 108 of the followers is not required, but acquiring all of them will result in a loved friend or ally being brought back from the dead; giving an extra incentive to run around the world map constantly to search for more followers.
While the games themselves do not follow a chronological sequence of events, the entire world takes place in the same world and amongst overlapping histories. Many 108 Stars of Destiny are consistent throughout the game and each new protagonist will find and fight with familiar faces to players of the series.
Since Murayama’s departure, Suikoden II, IV and V was received with lackluster and fading reviews. While some games have been released in the Suikoden franchise, few have had the same amount of interest or following that the first two received.