It has been four years since I wrote about Aurion: Legacy of the Kori-Odan, a 2D fighting game that fused JRPG/anime with pan-African fantasy.
I’ve played thousands of games since then, and nothing quite like it.
I couldn’t call it a game without flaws. The loading times were poor, some of the boss fights dragged terribly (those were later patched, to be fair), and between the writing and translation, a little effort was needed to get into the feel of things. But I dug its world, its general vibe, and even felt fondly towards some of its characters, particularly the griot and the protagonist’s mentor, who is way too busy being a badass somewhere else to babysit him.
I never liked Dragonball Z. Hated it, actually. It’d be reductive to call Aurion “Dragonball Cameroon”, but plain deluded to deny its influence. And I actually like that about it. It’s a work made by a group of people doing something they love, inspired by art and stories from around the world, while being fundemantally, and absolutely an expression of love and hope and pride in their own, and several other African cultures.
Also you get to smack dudes in the face and light them up with massive fireballs and boulders and that. Win-win, really.