A Worthy Tribute
The tactical RPG has all the time been a really understated sub-genre for my part. Though it had its heyday a number of many years in the past, doing notably properly on techniques just like the PlayStation and PS2, it by no means really had its time within the limelight. To an extent, I perceive this. SRPGs aren’t all the time the simplest to get into. Nor are they all the time probably the most persistently stimulating. However there’s one thing about shifting your characters round on a grid as you outwit your opponents one-on-one that simply can’t be beat. And, whereas these sorts of experiences don’t come alongside fairly often any extra, I’m very grateful that video games reminiscent of God Wars: The Complete Legend nonetheless pop up each every so often to ensure that they by no means really die out.
God Wars: The Complete Legend is the closest factor that I’ve performed to a “traditional SRPG” in years. It’s not that I haven’t performed different tactics-based video games in that point — you possibly can’t overlook about all of these Disgaea re-releases which were popping out recently — nevertheless it’s definitely probably the most old style. It’s a recreation that does its greatest to be sluggish, thought-out, and deliberate. And, with solely the occasional exception right here and there, I’m joyful to say that it imbues all of these “old-school elements” — and extra — into itself somewhat splendidly.
God Wars‘ narrative is unique in the sense that it caters Japanese mythology closely, but does so in an undeniably carefree way. Occurring during a time when Japan began relying less on nature and more on technology and industry, God Wars’ story follows Kaguya, a younger princess who, after being rescued from her lifelong imprisonment — and sacrificial future — by her childhood pal Kintaro, units off on a journey to seek out her mom, and queen of Fuji, Tsukuyomi. Sadly, destiny appeared to produce other plans. Regardless of Kaguya’s newfound lease on life, and willpower to hunt out the reality, there are lots of others who want nothing greater than to see Kaguya returned to the place they consider she rightfully belongs — leaving the princess, and what few compatriots she has, to battle for themselves at each flip.
As unhappy as I’m to say it, I really feel like God Wars‘ story truly finally ends up being its weakest hyperlink (which could not be the worst factor on the planet, relying on how you consider it). Regardless of being based mostly on Japanese mythology, this recreation approaches issues with what might greatest be described as a “mix-and-match” mindset. On one hand, I actually don’t thoughts this type of factor. In any case, you possibly can solely inform the identical story so many occasions earlier than it will get boring — typically somewhat mixing does a narrative good. Nevertheless, I simply wasn’t feeling it with this recreation’s story. It felt as if, in the event you stripped all the characters of their mythological backgrounds, you’d be caught with one thing that, whereas not dangerous, isn’t notably partaking. Enjoying a recreation revolving round gods and mythology is thrilling, however mythos alone usually isn’t sufficient to hold the whole thing of a recreation’s story during from begin to end — one thing which shortly turns into obvious in God Wars.
So, what’s it about God Wars that makes it really feel so “traditional”? Nicely, the quickest solution to reply that query can be to say that it performs extremely equally to Last Fantasy Techniques (and that’s in all probability sufficient for a few of you on the market). However, for the sake of the assessment, it will in all probability assist if I defined issues in somewhat extra element. As I’ve already talked about as soon as earlier than, the most important issue that performs into God Wars’ traditional-ness are its pacing and technique necessities. So as to come out of any skirmish on prime, gamers can’t simply blindly rush in and spam all of their heaviest-hitting assaults — I’ll inform you proper now that that nearly by no means works. As an alternative, the participant must… watch for it… strategize! And, whereas which may sound like an excessively apparent assertion to a few of you, what isn’t apparent simply how a lot strategizing you’ll have to be doing.
Considered one of my favourite issues about God Wars ended up simply how a lot significance it locations on technique. Most ranges, particularly these afterward within the recreation, aren’t precisely what you’d name truthful when it comes to numbers, and it doesn’t take lengthy earlier than you discover your 6(ish)-man celebration going up towards teams which might be twice your measurement or extra. And, whereas it may be good to carve by way of your teams of enemies like the sport have been some type of hack-and-slash, I’ve already advised you that that usually gained’t occur. As an alternative, the important thing to victory virtually all the time lies inside the participant’s means to metaphorically arrange the sector. God Wars could be very a lot a recreation that favors buffs, debuffs, and standing results over uncooked energy, and tends to reward gamers who determine that out earlier fairly than later. In fact, a superb technique doesn’t essentially assure victory — enemies are very a lot conscious that this can be a numbers recreation as properly. And, whereas the AI in God Wars by no means feels overpowering, it’s definitely fairly respectable at making the perfect of any given state of affairs.
In fact, God Wars doesn’t simply depend on the participant’s potential to arrange the sector metaphorically — your bodily setup on the battlefield issues as nicely! God Wars, like most nice SRPGs on the market, locations nice significance on not solely what your characters are doing, however the place on the battlefield that they’re. Alongside the anticipated modifiers to (bodily) injury and AIM (accuracy) based mostly on the instructions that the attacker and defender are dealing with, God Wars, to my shock, additionally throws in further modifiers based mostly on a personality’s peak, in addition to minor terrain bonuses. Now, honestly, I by no means obtained an excessive amount of out of those bonuses. Don’t get me mistaken, it’s not like they aren’t useful in any respect, however I couldn’t assist however discover that their significance felt diminished when in comparison with different, extra conventional, SRPGs, corresponding to these inside the Ultimate Fantasy Techniques collection. Nonetheless, I’m not completely positive that I discover this to be a nasty factor. Whereas I do recognize having to think about bodily placement, it will get annoying when video games utterly tank issues like accuracy simply since you aren’t dealing with the right course. And in that sense, God Wars undoubtedly dodges a bullet.
Now, let’s get to the great things — the roles! As everybody who is aware of me already is aware of (which, now that I give it some thought, in all probability isn’t anybody studying this), I completely adore an excellent SRPG job system. And I’ll inform you this proper now; there’s a lot to adore relating to God Wars’ job system. With regards to jobs, issues work fairly equally to how they did within the Last Fantasy Techniques franchise (as soon as once more), with gamers with the ability to equip every of their characters with main and sub jobs, in addition to as much as three passive talents (that are acquired by means of the roles themselves). Every character’s perspective job pool is small at first, consisting of fundamentals like “Priest” and “Warrior”, characters shortly achieve entry to new and higher jobs as they accumulate JP (Job Factors) and degree their present jobs up. These new jobs, are far more numerous when it comes to skillsets than their extra primary counterparts and, in flip, supply an enormous incentive for gamers to swap jobs round as a lot as they will. Simply watch out about swapping round jobs too liberally, although. Main jobs not solely decide, to a sure level, a personality’s present stats, but in addition their everlasting stat progress once they degree up (a mechanic which I wasn’t solely bought on). Due to that, I’d advocate that you simply don’t hold your bodily attackers as healers (and vise-versa) for too lengthy, only for the sake of making an attempt to have each character study each talent potential. That’s what sub jobs are for!
Moreover, every of the sport’s characters (did I point out that they’re all pre-set on this recreation?) include what are referred to as “Unique Jobs”. That’s proper people, we’re speaking three jobs per character (woo!). However what, precisely, do Distinctive Jobs do? Nicely, with out getting too complicated, they’re principally hybrids of pre-existing jobs. Though most original jobs do have their very own one-of-a-kind expertise, many distinctive job expertise are simply re-named variants of pre-existing ones discovered inside regular jobs. At first which may sound like type of a bummer, however I’ve truly discovered it to be the other. By permitting characters to all the time carry a sure set of expertise with them, they’re usually higher ready for fight no matter their present job setup — particularly if they’ve a singular job that comes with therapeutic and help expertise!
New Associates, New Foes
Being the “Complete Legend” and all, one may anticipate this model of God Wars be bulkier than its Future Previous counterpart when it comes to content material. And you’d be proper on that! Sadly, you gained’t be seeing a lot of that content material till you’ve conquered the primary marketing campaign. Titled “The Labyrinth of Yomi”, this all-new piece of content material follows Kaguya & co. as they enterprise into the (shock!) Labyrinth of Yomi. Whereas I’m not likely going to enter the story (lest I by chance start tripping over one spoiler after one other), I can inform you that it’s undoubtedly well worth the time that it takes to get there. Whereas not fairly as prolonged as the primary marketing campaign, The Labyrinth of Yomi primarily finally ends up being a miniature sequel, providing a brand new story — full with a number of endings — the power to recruit Momotaro and his posse (lastly!), and loads of new dungeons — all of which can inevitably find yourself doubling the 100+ hours that you’ll have more than likely sunk into the unique story.
As for the primary story… Nicely, not a lot has been added. Not a lot apart from Orihime, that’s! The “Future Past segment” of God Wars stealthily provides a shrine into one of many starting areas often known as “Orihime’s Shrine” which, after being visited, permits gamers to interact on a small (as in like 5, or one thing) collection of comparatively straightforward quests that, upon completion, grants gamers the opportinity to recruit the Myriad God Orihime herself into their social gathering. Nicely, technically it’s her proxy, however why cut up hairs needlessly? Whereas (clearly) nowhere almost as content-packed as The Labyrinth of Yomi, extra celebration members are all the time good. Plus, she will float! How cool is that?
The Gods are Happy
God Wars: Future Previous already did an amazing job of providing virtually the whole lot that I might need relating to classically impressed SRPGs, and the new-and-improved model that’s The Complete Legend solely ups the ante even additional. Providing tactical gameplay of each excessive amount and high quality, ridiculously interesting character customization choices, and primarily tacking a veritable sequel onto itself, there’s no purpose to not decide up God Wars: The Complete Legend in the event you think about your self to be a lover of the oh-so-wonderful tactical RPG.
FINAL VERDICT: four/5
Obtainable on: Nintendo Change (Reviewed), ; Writer: NIS America, Inc. ; Developer: Kadokawa Video games ; Gamers: 1 ; Launched: September four, 2018 ; ESRB: $39.99 ; MSRP: T for Teen
Full disclosure: This assessment is predicated on a replica of God Wars: The Complete Legend given to Hey Poor Participant by the writer.