There always seems to be one first person dungeon crawler coming out, usually from Japan and as the genre seems to work as a vague cop out when a game is needed quickly without any real innovation.
Etrian Odyssey is just this, I have played one of the older titles that came out for the DS, and enjoyed it for what it was. So not having seen or played another one of the games for nearly 8 years now, on a new system, what I didn’t expect to see what a game that looked identical to the one I played all those years ago.
A turn based game cannot really change, you can either go third or first person, but the first person style is attempting to have a throwback to games when technical limitations held them back. You go around a dungeon with a party of 6, three at the front, three at the back, and explore whilst using the stylus to draw out the map as you explore, which was a nice touch in the first game, but you can’t really use it as the only innovation, oh of course there are some 3D effects now.
These complaints may seem trivial, but the game does just feel the same, hell the first mission is the same damn mission that has been used for the last god knows how many games, and the same map and layout, seriously just a copy and paste. Which is a serious disappointment, as all the areas look the same it just feels like such a poor effort in the game.
Game play is the same as the last X amount of games, and any Japanese dungeon crawler released since the 90’s basically, as said you have two rows of three, the front and the back line. The front line is for melee and can not usually attack the back, the back are for ranged and can attack and support but are much weaker. So if your front line isn’t strong enough, you will quickly find yourself dead, heals, de-buffs and buffs are all needed for a balanced team, making a full glass cannon is usually a bad idea and will lead to many deaths. The combat system is the only part of this game that can’t really be changed, I mean it’s a formula that fits and works well, with the right amount of strategy to make it a little difficult. There are enough classes to choose from to keep it interesting, but all the end will look the same with everyone just equipping that same staff with super stats.
Graphically the game is sub par, it has the same 2D areas that were in the original game, it seems, and most corridors look identical with very little visual differences, making it more difficult to remember where you currently are in relation to other areas. You can clearly tell what each area is attempting to look like, but if you enter an area with the same style apart from the layout of the map there is nothing letting you easily tell the difference between the two. Monsters and players are all just sprites, no movement just one spite of them all, if they die you get a little fade away, not really what you expect in a game made in 2014, I’ve played mobile games that are free that have more design than this. Most of the monsters haven’t been redesigned either, meaning that most of the monsters you’ve seen before, removing most of the suspense you get from entering a new area for the first time. Some of the new areas look nice, there is a common art style present in the game which doesn’t look bad, it would just be nice to see some improvements.
One of the different areas in this game is that you can choose to go through a story mode, or adventure mode, basically the difference is one takes you around the world with a narrative, the other just gives you missions to go around the world as you would like. The story works with a tutorial and all that and eases you into the game mechanics, so it makes it easier for a new player to get to grips with the mechanics at play. The story is quite generic and it won’t break any records in the art of storytelling, but it does its job, and it is most entertaining for the duration, though I doubt those who have played the game before would enjoy the hand holding that is found here.
Etrian odyssey isn’t a bad game, it’s a good game, it’s just a very similar game to the many previous versions of the game. If you are a fan of the series, you are really not going to find anything amazing or different, and that really is a shame, but for new players there is a wealth of content that they can enjoy, but it would be nice that I didn’t have to feel like I’m playing a game I’ve already played. It’s one of those games where everything comes together nicely, but it’s safe, there isn’t any boundaries being pushed, I would go as far to call it the Call of duty of Dungeon crawlers, a safe game with minimal changes. For someone who has played this series before, a 2/5 is what it deserves, though if you haven’t played it before you may find a lot more than I have here.
About the Game – nis america
Etria is a land that has long welcomed explorers…yet even they will discover stories untold.
Uncover the truth behind the labyrinth that swallows all. By choosing first to immerse yourself in Story mode, you will encounter the maiden who has lived a thousand years and the growing mystery that surrounds her past—a past that may affect the present and future of Etria.
Should you brave Classic mode, you will experience the beautifully upgraded version of the original Etrian Odyssey adventure, with new 3D graphics and gameplay improvements as seen in Etrian Odyssey IV, as well as a fully orchestrated BGM to accompany your journey. Scour through the dungeon’s many layers and fend off the unknown to discover the truth behind the Yggdrasil Tree.
Choosing either mode will unravel the engrossing tale that signaled the start of the grand Etrian Odyssey series. How will the newest generation of explorers fare in unearthing Etria’s latest tale?
To enjoy the 3D effect of Nintendo 3DS software, you must experience it from the system itself. All screenshots and videos on this website have been captured in 2D mode.
Disclaimer:All scores given within our reviews are based on the artist’s personal opinion; this should in no way impede your decision to purchase the game.