4.0 out of 5


  • Tribute to CD-i games
  • Humor
  • Collecting


  • Boss battles
  • Background designs

Switch, PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X
Limited Run Games
Seedy Eye Software
Action, Adventure, Platform
File Size (Minimum)
Release Date (NA)
Feb 14, 2024

Arzette: The Jewel of Faramore pays homage to The Legend of Zelda games from the Phillips CD-i and their gameplay mechanics, visuals, and audio. It successfully does as intended and feels like it was released in the ‘90s. Although Arzette plays better than the CD-i games that inspired it, it does have some issues.

A ‘90s Power Vibe

Arzette: The Jewel of Faramore - Screenshot

There was an era where The Legend of Zelda did not have the best quality games. In the early ‘90s, Nintendo gave permission to Phillips to use a few of their characters for the CD-i console. However, the outcome didn’t do the system any favors and was swept under the rug. Internet memes still use footage of the CD-i games, which was enough for a small indie studio, Seedy Eye Software, to bounce on the idea to make a game based on the Zelda CD-i titles. The idea sounds ridiculously crazy, but the company pulled it off.

The cutscenes in Arzette truly feel like they came from the ‘90s. Character illustrations look absurd with flat colors and basic pixel art as if done in Microsoft Paint. The animations are choppy and look off, but that was the initial intent—to make it like the CD-i games. On top of the simplistic illustrations, the voice-over dialogue is cheesy with humorous moments. Those who actually played or seen clips of the Zelda CD-i games will get a few laughs.

Like the cutscenes and characters, the game level visuals also resemble the ‘90s era of water-colored textures and basic designs with some details. It’s bland, but it makes the characters and projectiles in this platformer stand out. However, doing so comes at a cost. Some ledges blend in too much with the background and can make it difficult to tell if you can actually jump on them or not. It’s an instance where the homage goes too far, making the same bad decisions the source game did instead of updating them.

The audio has an easier job. Some sound effects provide more of the cheesy effect. For example, exiting a stage sounds like a vacuum sucking up an object through a tube. Killing an enemy is accompanied by an electric zap. The soundtrack feels like a compilation of tecno beats from an electric keyboard.

Going on a Quest

Arzette: The Jewel of Faramore - Screenshot

The game’s storyline is straight to the point. Demon King Daimur escaped his imprisonment from the Book of Oakurin, thanks to Princess Arzette and team. Seeking revenge, Daimur and his servants look to overthrow the kingdom and rule the land. Having learned of Daimur’s escape, Princess Arzette leaves on a quest to stop the Demon King. The cheesy dialogue makes this adventure lighthearted.

Before you challenge Daimur, you’ll have to take down his servants. Before challenging them, you’ll have to collect a few candles, since they are required to pass a barrier that keeps you from the fight. Collecting sounds like a chore, but it can actually be addicting. Finding items to exchange to help you upgrade your weapon resembles the trading scenarios in The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening, which is not bad at all.

A majority of the levels have a set of items to collect and a minigame. These minigames vary, involving either collecting jewels, finding an exit in a low-lit area, or closing doors on a set of levels. The door closing minigame resembles another CD-i game, Hotel Mario. Hats off to Seedy Eye Software for slipping this one in.

A Rushed Boss

Arzette: The Jewel of Faramore - Screenshot

When you do finally challenge a boss, defeating them feels too easy. You’ll be an overpowered hero with all the various power-ups you can get during your adventure. For example, you’ll gain the power to create a shield and deflect enemy projectiles back at foes.

The final fight against Daimur doesn’t feel fulfilling either. You chase the Demon King across the level. He’ll throw books at you while you try not to fall into lava. It sounds like a challenge, but it’s not with all the power-ups at your disposal. Once you reach the end of the chase, you swing at the enemy and a cutscene begins. The battle is over. Players can expect to wrap up the game and collect everything in under ten hours.

For a challenge, players can attempt the Boss Rush mode to defeat each enemy without power-ups and only three heart containers. The game also offers a Hero Mode, where enemies are more powerful and take more damage to defeat. These modes become available after defeating Daimur for the first time and are a good way to extend the experience.

The Final Adventure

Arzette: The Jewel of Faramore fully grasps the style of the CD-i games with its art, music, and gameplay. There are minor flaws like becoming overpowered against enemies, but it’s worth adventuring for kicks. You can do it, princess!

A PlayStation 5 review code provided for this review and gameplay footage.

Arzette: The Jewel of Faramore - Gameplay Footage (PS5)

About Seth Hay - Editor-in-chief / Webmaster

When Seth is not designing or developing, he spends time with his family and his occasional dose of anime, sports and video games.

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