Together Retro Game Club – Riviera: The Promised Land


Presented by noiseredux and Racketboy
New To Together Retro? Check out the introduction to the club

Let’s kick of 2011 with a truly immersive game. Riviera: The Promised Land is basically an RPG, but also incorporates major elements from genres as far-reaching as strategy, adventure and even dating sims. It’s going to be a unique month, so hang tight!

Riviera Screenshots


Riviera was first released in 2002 on the Japan-only WonderSwan Color. The
game marked the first title in the Dept. Heaven series of games developed by Sting Entertainment, of which Riviera and later entries Yggdra Union and Knight In The Nightmare have all gone on to adopt a certain cult following. In 2005 Riviera was brought to the US on the Game Boy Advance via Atlus, a publisher well known for translating fringe games that may not appeal to mainstream America.

Though the game incorporates a rather cutesy manga style, the subject matter is another story altogether. Our antagonist is a wingless angel named Ein, and the story is heavy on various cultural mythologies, sexual innuendo and situations and other dark matter.

The GBA remake would go on to be one of the most technically impressive games in the GBA library, boasting a blend of SNES-inspired RPG sprites, beautiful manga-inspired cut scenes and almost 200 voice samples which is incredibly impressive taking into the consideration the limitations of a GBA cart.

The game would go on to receive another port to the PSP in 2007. This version used the same graphics as the GBA version, though at a higher resolution. The PSP port did however receive full voice work which would be unique to this release.


Riviera is actually the first in a projected five-game series collectively referred to as the Dept. Heaven series. Each game in the series is a different mash-up seemingly unrelated genres. So far only three of the five games have been released:

  • Riviera: The Promised Land – WonderSwan Color, GBA, PSP
  • Yggdra Union: We’ll Never Fight Alone – GBA, PSP, DS
  • Knights In The Nightmare – DS, PSP

Emulation Help

Racketboy Emulation Forum

Together Retro Discussion

Instead of posting in the comments section of the blog, we will be using the forum for all of our discussion in order to keep things more organized. So play Riviera and talk to us about your thoughts and play experiences in the forums. We want to know your favorite parts, your successes and your failures.
Discuss The Game In The Forum

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flan says:

FYI, you messed up the forum link.

smartaz says:

I loved everthing about the first two …. So much so that I picked them up on each platform . Please Please Please bring them all to the next-gen platforms . Ds3D , Ps3 network , Wii ,Xbox live … ect.

Auyx says:

Wow really funny I just literally downloaded the rom for this after finishing Golden Sun DS and wanting another portable RPG. Never heard of it before but it appears on an number of “Most Underrated” lists so I just grabbed it. Looking forward to it now.

sabrage says:

I’m actually playing through this right now! It’s impressive so far, and I’m glad you’re running this to help overcome “emulator syndrome” which I definitely suffer from! I’ll endeavor to play it more now.

Chocobito says:

I have it in Emulator and in my PSP, a very good RPG very unique.

Betina says:

Just got this game, and I haven’t played it yet. After reading this, all I could think was “what the hell am I waiting for?”

Well, I supposse a little bit of Riviera and Fire Emblem at 2am would not hurt anyone 😀

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