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Embark on a visually stunning RPG adventure with Arcana, featuring a captivating Tarot-themed world, strategic elemental battles, and a fantastic musical score

Discover the captivating RPG world of Arcana, a game that, despite its Japanese origins, takes inspiration from the Western classic Dungeon Master. Immerse yourself in turn-based combat, strategic elemental battles, and a visually striking Tarot-themed universe.

Origins of First-Person RPGs

The Dungeon Master Era

In the late ’80s, Dungeon Master revolutionized RPGs, introducing immersive first-person adventures. Western and Japanese game developers alike were captivated by its innovative viewpoint, giving birth to a new era of RPGs.

Shining in the Darkness

Sega’s response, “Shining in the Darkness” for the Genesis/Mega Drive, embraced Dungeon Master’s concept but introduced turn-based combat. Despite its shortcomings, it gained popularity and paved the way for Japanese RPGs, with notable titles like HAL’s “Arcana” (also known as “The Card Master”).

Exploring the Tarot-Themed Arcana

Arcana emerges as the game “Shining in the Darkness” should have been. It maintains the central hub village, turn-based combat, and sequential dungeon exploration. However, it elevates the gaming experience with a visually appealing Tarot theme, offering a unique aesthetic.

Arcana (SNES gallery 05)

Visual Delights of Tarot

The game introduces a Tarot theme where characters and items are represented as cards. This visual choice, predating phenomena like Pokémon and Magic the Gathering, contributes to an immersive and visually appealing experience. Arcana’s diverse levels, from ice palaces to forests, prevent monotony in dungeon-crawling adventures.

Strategic Gameplay and Unfair Challenges

Elemental Strategy in Battles

Arcana’s battle system, while familiar, introduces elemental attributes (fire, wind, earth, and water), adding strategic depth. Players must consider these elements in combat, and summoning elemental spirits enhances the tactical aspect of battles.

Facing the Unfair Challenges

Despite its enjoyable RPG action, this game is notorious for its unexpected and harsh challenges. Unfair Game Over situations, especially during boss encounters, force players back to the last save, testing their resilience and determination.

A Symphony of Medieval Tunes

Arcana’s standout feature is its remarkable soundtrack. HAL’s musicians masterfully utilize the SNES hardware, delivering medieval tunes that perfectly complement the fantasy setting. The music adds a sense of urgency and importance to even the smallest encounters.

Japanese RPG with a First-Person Twist

A Unique Perspective

While inspired by Dungeon Master, Arcana stands as a traditional Japanese turn-based RPG viewed through the eyes of the protagonists. The turn-based combat, although less tense, transforms the game into a methodical and tactical RPG.

Exploring Arcana’s World

Viewing Arcana as a unique take on the Dungeon Master concept reveals its true charm. With a pleasingly vast range of playable characters, well-designed levels, and depth in combat, Arcana offers an enjoyable RPG experience, albeit with occasional frustrating challenges.

Unravel the Tarot-Themed RPG Adventure in Arcana – Where Cards Shape Destiny!


Embark on a captivating journey with Arcana, a game that pays homage to Dungeon Master while infusing Japanese RPG elements. Despite occasional challenges, its unique visual style, strategic battles, and exceptional music make it a worthy addition to the RPG genre.

Arcana (SNES gallery 02)

Play Arcana Online Anywhere, Anytime

Arcana isn’t confined to a specific platform. Whether on a computer web browser, mobile device, or tablet, the game ensures accessibility, allowing players to dive into its captivating world whenever and wherever.

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What is the gameplay style of this game?

This game follows a turn-based RPG style, allowing players to explore dungeons, engage in battles, and strategically overcome challenges.

How does the elemental system work in battles?

The elemental system in this game introduces attributes like fire, wind, earth, and water, adding a strategic layer to combat. Players must consider these elements for effective battles.

What is the significance of the Tarot theme in this game?

The Tarot theme in this game is a visual delight, representing characters and items as cards. This aesthetic choice contributes to the game’s unique atmosphere.

Why is this game known for its unfair challenges?

This game presents unexpected challenges, especially during boss encounters, leading to occasional harsh Game Over situations. This aspect tests players’ determination and resilience.

Can Arcana be played on different platforms?

Yes, this game is designed for accessibility. Whether on a computer web browser, mobile device, or tablet, players can enjoy the game anytime, anywhere.