This week on The Free Cheese, time is a key to creation and a vessel for destruction!

What happens when Atlus translates its Megami Tensei series into something to compete with other monster collecting RPGs on Game Boy Advance? The DemiKids are born! We take a look at the first and only DemiKids games to release in North America. We explore where they differ from other Megami Tensei games, how they compare to Pokémon, and what separates them from themselves.



DemiKids: Dark Version wears the mask of a Pokémon imitator while successfully translating the Shin Megami Tensei experience for a new audience. After years of inevitably failing to complete numerous games in the series, DemiKids: Dark Version marks the first SMT game that I was able to complete without extended gaps between play sessions.

I think Atlus made something incredibly approachable while retaining enough of the core in a Megami Tensei experience to engage those looking for it. I found the story to play out in a manner much more engaging than other RPGs like it and while it ended on notes that you expect, it feels right as they arrive.

I never felt like I had a great nor deep understanding of the type charts or fusion possibilities but I was still able to assemble a party that looked cool and progressed me to the end. I like the way that the game’s characters all have a roundness to them and overall I felt the saturation of color in the game was refreshing.

The music in this game has reminded me to play more games wearing headphones. There are so many layers within each track that I found new appreciation for each time they played. The battle theme has still been ringing in my head weeks after finishing the game.



One of my favorite aspects of the SMT series is that it feels like Pokémon for adults. So when I found out this game is aimed at the Pokémon audience, I had some hesitation. I was a bit concerned coming into this one, but to my surprise it still has adult themes.

While the SMT games always lose me with their stories, this one felt a bit easier to grasp. The battle system isn’t as in depth with the weakness/strength system I’ve become accustomed to in the other SMT games I’ve played. The big hold up is that the navigation between worlds and dimensions becomes very confusing by the end. My reliance on a guide went from minimal to necessary during my play through. However, this was still enjoyable and maybe a bit more approachable then some of the main entries I’ve played.


Final Score