Legend of Legacy is soon to hit shelves in the US, and JRPG fans should take a look at the spiritual successor to the SaGa series. Atlus' newest RPG features seven playable characters whose paths all meet on the mystical and newly appeared island of Avalon. If you are already familiar with the game, you can jump right to my tips!
The game being set on an island, not an entire world, makes Legend of Legacy feel like a scaled down version of a SaGa game. The rich history of Avalon helps fill the void left by a smaller map. Each playable character game has a unique reason for exploring Avalon, but outside of an opening sequence, the character development, which was very rich in previous SaGa games, feels a little lacking.
|Legend of Legacy has 7 playable characters, including a frog prince!|
It's difficult not to compare this game to Bravely Default, as these two games share a and feature similar graphics. While Bravely Default wins out when it comes to graphics, Legend of Legacy should not be dismissed out of hand. Legend of Legacy offers a much wider array of playable characters, as well as a different kind of tactical game play. Being a sandbox-style game, Legend of Legacy is lighter on plot than the very story-driven Bravely Default, and feels much more open world, with a stronger emphasis on exploration and grinding.
The world of Legend of Legacy feels very alive, due in no small part to the way trees, rocks and other environmental elements pop up as you explore the map. This can be a little annoying at times, as occasionally a wall of trees will pop up and block your path, but it lends a unique kind of charm to the game. Monsters roam the maps, and will give chase if you wander too close, though they are much easier to avoid and outrun than in previous SaGa games. NPCs also appear on maps, providing information, items or healing services.
Elements and elemental alliances are an incredibly important part of Legend of Legacy, and players should beware of maps which have been taken over by the Shadow Element! The poor visibility caused by Shadow makes it impossible to consult your map, and the fog makes monsters three times more powerful. By exploring maps, finding singing statues and listening to stories about Avalon's history, players are able to explore the story of the game as well as receive elemental charms, which can be used in battle.
Map creation is also a key element in Legend of Legacy, though it is a far more passive and less demanding undertaking than in the Etrian Odyssey series. Maps auto fill themselves as you wander through dungeons. Map creation can be frustrating when you have a map which is 99% complete and you can't quite figure out which tiny sliver of the map you have not walked across, but this is usually resolved by simply walking the perimeter of the dungeon. Once a map is complete, it can be sold to the merchant in town for a pretty penny.
I found the game to be rather quiet, musically speaking. The background tunes are pleasant, but not terribly loud. Despite having the 3DS volume all the way up, I had to turn down the volume of special effects, just to be able to appreciate the background music. The art of the game is lovely, and the backgrounds are beautifully rendered. That said, the game does not take advantage of the 3D features as often as does Bravely Default.
|The city of Initium is beautifully illustrated.|
If you are unsure if Legend of Legacy is the right game for you, not to worry! The Nintendo eShop has a free playable demo available, just waiting to be downloaded onto your 3DS. While this demo is very limited, it will give you a good idea of if this is the game for you.
Regardless of if you are interested in the demo or if you already have the full game, I have tips for you!
While not as convenient as the auto battle feature in Bravely Default, holding down the L button will allow you to play one-handed. This will not only speed up battles, it will also auto-enter the last set of commands you entered.
Heal the Fallen.
You don't need a special spell to revive a fallen ally, just use Treat Wounds! They'll pop right back up and get back to the battle.
Despite the early in-game advice encouraging you to avoid monsters, your characters will be auto-healed after every battle, so as long as a character does not fall during battle, there is no reason to worry. Do take note that your SP will not automatically regenerate.
Talk to the NPC guard wandering the first Forest Ruins Map.
This character will teach you the Ambush formation, which will allow you to deal more damage and make grinding quicker.
Hire a Ship. Hire lots of ships.
This is a great way to get access to good gear early on in the game. A Caravel, which can be hired for 1000 St, provides good loot, and selling the items it brings will usually net you more than it costs to hire the ship.
Get ambushed by shaking trees.
The mobs housed in shaking threes in right-hand maps of the Hidden Forrest drop a sword which has a whopping 31 attack. Arming your team of three with these weapons makes grinding will be a breeze!
Be a social butterfly.
Talk to the characters wandering maps, they are full of surprises! In dungeons they may give you items or offer to heal your party. In town they may provide valuable information or even join your party. The brighter the character's outfit, the more you should speak to them.
Fill your maps.
While you can sell a map of any level of completion, you can only sell each map one time. There is no reason to take less money for something that will automatically fill itself out, so hang onto your maps until they read 100% complete.
Transfer your game.
The Legend of Legacy demo cuts you off after only two dungeons, but if you decide to invest in the full game, you do not have to start over! Transfer your save data and pick up right where you left off, with all your weapons and stats in place.
How about you?
Have you played Legend of Legacy? If so, what were your impressions of the game? Did you ever play the SaGa series? How do you think it compares to this spiritual successor? Do you have a favorite JRPG? Please share your thoughts in the comments!