Buried Treasure: Jade Cocoon (PlayStation)

Friday, March 13th, 2015

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The Sony PlayStation turned 20 years old last year. Being a kid that grew up with the original PlayStation, the brand holds a very nostalgic and significant place in my life. The list of PlayStation games that came to the West is well over 1000. Though this is an amazing library, it caused some really great and maybe just obscure titles to be overshadowed by some of the more popular franchises. I’m starting this editorial to bring some awareness to some of the games that I grew up with in hopes that it gives you that nostalgic smirk of remembering the times you rented/bought these games or maybe introduce you to a title you haven’t heard of and will give it a try. I hope you enjoy and if you have PlayStation titles that you believe deserves a write up, comment on them below and I’ll do my best to share them in an article. Now, to the game!

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Jade Cocoon: Story of the Tamamaya

Being 11 years old in 1999 meant that you were growing up right as the Pokemon revolution was taking America and the rest of the world by storm. The problem I had as a kid was that I did not have a Game Boy Color. The first handheld I ever received was a Game Boy Advance for my 13th birthday, but I digress. While I didn’t have Pokemon in 1999, I did find a PlayStation game called Jade Cocoon: Story of the Tamamaya.

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Jade Cocoon borrowed a lot of mechanics from the Pokemon playbook, though the premise of Jade Cocoon is not as simple. You play as a young man, Levant, in his quest to become a cocoon master (I’m sure he’s gonna be the very best…). Levant’s town is attacked, putting most of the residents into a deep sleep. For this reason, his marriage and quest are rushed to hurry him on his journey. With the help of an old witch lady, Garai, and his new wife, Mahbu, Levant goes out on his own to find herbs to wake his neighbors and spend some quality time with Mahbu.

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As you journey through the different areas, you encounter monsters and you have the option to capture them. When I picked this game up, I had no idea that it had this mechanic, but you wouldn’t believe how stoked I was when I found out. Anyhow, you get your enemies health low and attempt to capture it in the most intense way, filled with lens flairs, controller vibrations and epic flute tunes. These monsters can be used in battle and as they level up they learn new skills. More monster customization comes with the ability to fuse two monsters together to make them even stronger.

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Jade Cocoon has never left my memory as anything less than a brilliant game with hours of fun capturing and fusing monsters as you play through a very interesting story. If you get the chance, check this game out, you won’t be let down.

Facts about Jade Cocoon:

  • Developed by Genki, who is now making mobile games.
  • Produced by Crave Entertainment, who is now bankrupt.
  • Released Nov. 1998 in America, which is just two months after Pokemon was released in America.
  • Levant is silent throughout the entire game.
  • Mahbu is voiced by Michelle Ruff, who also voices Yoko Littner from Gurren Lagann, Jill Valentine from Resident Evil, Chi from Chobits, and others.
  • The new game plus puts Levant in an area called the Eternal Corridor, which is a never ending dungeon where you can catch monsters not in the main game and learn new skills.
  • The game is currently only available on Japan’s PSN
  • Jade Cocoon received a sequel on the PlayStation 2 called Jade Cocoon 2
  • Holds a 74% rating on GameRankings

I hope to continue this feature so please comment any opinions on this game or PlayStation games you grew up with that you feel didn’t get enough spotlight. Thank you for reading!