Author Topic: Agarest Senki [JP PS3]  (Read 788 times)

Offline EOJ

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Agarest Senki [JP PS3]
« on: April 30, 2008, 05:00:30 PM »
This was released way back in September 2007, JP only. Here are some impressions after my first 10 or so hours with the game:

It's a very interesting game - published by Idea Factory, and jointly developed by Compile Heart and Red. Essentially it's a strategy RPG, but it has a number of twists that make it more than ordinary.

You play through 5 generations, and in each generation you have one of 3 brides to woo and win over (who also fight alongside you in the meantime). Depending on which bride you win, your son will have different strengths and weaknesses - you then play through the next generation as the son, get another bride, have another son, and so on. I'm still on the first generation and have only met one of the 3 possible brides, so this game is obviously pretty long!

The character design is fantastic, and the story is decent (though many of the same JRPG cliches can be found here), with full voice acting.

The battle system is one of the greatest aspects of the game - at first it seems really simple, but there is a deep system of chaining and combining attacks. Once you get the hang of it, it becomes really addictive. There is also an overkill system, where you are rewarded with the amount of damage you deal to an enemy after their lifebar empties. You are also graded after each fight, and apparently you can compare your stats with other players online (I haven't tried this yet).

The level up system is simple and fully open-ended, in that you can choose which stats to upgrade for each character as you see fit. There are also some class-change abilities that open up after LV50, as well as the ability to resurrect the dead heroes you played as in past generations.

There are some downsides - in the battle mode, you (apparently) only fight on a checkerboard-type space in the same weird arena-type screen every time, no matter what the local is. The floor will change slightly if you're in a forest or in a castle, but it's so minor that you might not even notice. If they took the time to make a variety of battle screens that coincided with the local you were fighting in, the game would have greatly benefited from it. Maybe in the sequel?

There are also some dungeon/quest areas where you walk around exploring in decent 2D polygonal environs, but the control is really clunky here, and you're treated to random battles. It's the one aspect of the game that really feels doujin-esque.

Overall, this game has me hooked (much to my surprise). While it's lacking in some areas, the overall game is really quite nicely designed, and has that addictive quality a SRPG needs to succeed. If you can read some Japanese, I highly recommend checking it out. Here is an English walkthrough of the first generation, for those who need some help:

There are also lots of screen grabs from the game on that site, if you want to check out the artwork and character design.

There is also a very in-depth Japanese wiki page:

Check out the forums there too - they're quite active.
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