English Title: Tenshi no Present: Marl Ōkoku Monogatari
Japanese Title: 天使のプレゼント マール王国物語
Publisher / Developer: Nippon Ichi Software
Genre: RPG
Released: Dec. 21, 2000
Product Codes: SLPS-20053 / JAN 4995506000165

The third -- and to date, last -- major title in Nippon Ichi's Marl Kingdom series. This one features a half-dozen shorter stories set all throughout the series timeline; before, after, between, and during the first two games. The backgrounds are now full-3D, which to me takes away a bit of the charm as the first two titles had fantastic hand-painted backgrounds. The battle system has also been reworked a bit, and you can now have four party members each with several support characters helping them out. The episodic format -- each story is unrelated and has a separate cast of characters, and they don't wrap together at the end -- may turn off some players, but as usual this is still a cute and charming little fantasy RPG. Shame that the series all but ended here.

One of the last titles that Ryoji Nomura worked on at Nippon Ichi before going freelance, and you can definitely see his later, more fetishised (putting it lightly) style starting to emerge. Personally, I think his earlier work is far more cohesive and has loads of charm in its relative innocence, though he's stated himself that he's personally embarrassed to look back on it. Ah well, whatever.

This limited edition set, much like Marl de Jigsaw, is a really cool package. It includes a complete two-disc soundtrack, along with a full-color artbook filled with promotional and production art, along with sheet music for each of the main theme songs. Again, even if you can't speak a word of Japanese, this is an essential package for any Marl Kingdom fan.