"Klonoa: Empire of Dreams" is a video game released for the Gameboy Advance console in 2002 by Namco. It is a platform game based on a popular Japanese video game series. In the United States, the game received a rating of "E" by the ESRB panel which deemed it suitable for all ages.
The storyline of this title pits Klonoa against Emporer Jillius. Jillius has been cursed and is not able to sleep, and takes out his anger on his citizens. Klonoa is arrested for the "crime" of dreaming and is ordered to defeat the monsters in Jillius' mind which are key to ending his curse. The game is spread over 40 levels of play where Klonoa will run, jump and battle with hordes of enemies. The enemies are subject to being captured by Klonoa who is able to make use of their special abilities for his own advantage; "boomies" are capable of destroying fragile walls which can create shortcuts for the player. It is a simple game to complete but can present some learning curve in identifying certain enemies who contain distinctions needed at specific times. The controls are responsive and I did not find any obvious slow down in play.
The graphics are presented from a side perspective which focuses on Klonoa. While the background visuals are generally very good, they are often repeated which does become noticeable in play and can be somewhat of an annoyance. This repetition, however, allowed for the developers to focus on creating stunning backgrounds. Both Klonoa and the enemies he faces are large, bright and feature a suitable variety of colours. The soundtrack is also good with more gentle compositions matching the "dreamy" setting of the game and digital voice snippets coming through clearly at sporadic times.
Overlal, Empire of Dreams is a game I would recommend to prospective buyers. While the total of 40 levels are shorter in duration and easy to complete, the visuals and audio effects are excellent and make for an enjoyable experience.