Julkaistu 23. marraskuu.
As of this writing, I am at a point where I believe I am close to completing this game on the hardest difficulty. My experience thus far is that the game is well worth while, and I would recommend it to any fan of tactical RPGs. This review will cover positive aspects of the game, negative aspects of the game (and why they don't matter much), and advice for potential adventurers.
First and foremost, the leveling system is vast. You are confronted with tons of options right at the outset, which provides a good degree of clarity about how to plan your path. It is definitely viable to create hard class archetypes, and is likely also viable to create more versatile heroes. There is a solid mix of cheap levelling options that help do what you want your character to do now, and choices that allow you to transition to new skills later.
Second, the tactical combat is varied enough to prevent approaching all battles in the same way. Differences in enemy types and compositions, apparent environmental attributes, hidden environmental objects, and varied victory conditions all help to keep things fresh. Depending on these scenarios, I've had success with tactics involving methodical advancement, bait and run, divide and conquer, run and gun, and defensive walling. I imagine that if you built for it, you could plan to finish some battles with ranged attacks before the enemies even reach you.
In addition, it is worth mentioning a few things other than the core gameplay. The story is well-told and evenly-paced, and is compelling enough to justify the constant fighting. The music is solid (though repetitive). And the world map is easy to navigate.
First, the graphical quality for character models is a little poor when seen up close. Characters don't look quite right facially, and when they talk you can even see that they don't have an inside to their mouths. Character portraits look little like their polygonal counterparts. While this can be offputting, it is not so apparent in battle view, and is not a major detriment.
The only other negative point is the tedious exploration. While map exploration is simple, it is a tedious point-and-click affair. Finding a quest sometimes means visiting each town (many of which look and feel the same) on the off-chance that it will have one, and clicking through each of the people to make sure. Because this is quickly accomplished, it is not a huge drawback, but it is a boring aspect of the game.
Some helpful pointers for those who do choose to buy this game (my first piece of advice is that you do) are below:
- Start with a notion of what you want each of your characters to do, and focus solely on that at first (melee vs. ranged vs. magic, choice of weapons, choice of spells). Plan to branch your characters out later.
- It is probably best to make your starting character a magic user, even if you don't plan to focus on spells right away. I don't feel particularly disadvantaged by not having done so, but I can see how an additional magic user could be helpful down the road.
- Don't focus on magic for your starting character, even if you make them a magic user. You will get other characters, and you probably don't need more than one pure mage.
- Magic users aren't great early on, but focusing on healing first is a big help to boosting their early-game usefulness without taking away from long-term viability.
- You will want at least one ranged character, and it will be obvious at a few points in the game who can fill that role.
- Stats and skills that accomplish more per turn/action are more valuable than capacity stats like HP and Astral Points.
- Gold matters a ton in the early parts of the game, and not at all after. Your priority spending should be on the best weapons you can find, followed by set armor.
- It is okay to skip a quest you're not ready for. Some builds can't handle some scenarios, and you may need to level up a little more to take it on. This is a likely but infrequent occurrence. As far as I can tell, quests don't disappear just by waiting.
- Don't be afraid to re-roll and start over. It is tempting to try different things, and you may discover early in the game that your build isn't working like you wanted. Your second try will be much improved.
Thank you for reading, I hope it was helpful, and please let others know whether or not you found this review informative.