Sunday, November 27, 2016

Odin Sphere: Leifthrasir Review (PlayStation Vita)

"If you dig Gwen, we're definitely friends."

Game Title: Odin Sphere: Leifthrasir
Genre: Side-scrolling Action-JRPG
Developer: Vanillaware
Publisher: Atlus
Odin Sphere: Leifthrasir

Odin Sphere: Leifthrasir welcomes you to a world of classic and refined nostalgia. The game fits the classic game from the PlayStation 2-era right in the palm of your hands, complete with two modes for you to choose from; either go classical or go refined to experience the new content firsthand, a remastered soundtrack, refined battle system, new sets of difficulties, new story content, and lets not forget the vibrant and lively visuals that had been revamped to take advantage of the PlayStation Vita's feature-rich screen.

As we may all know (or not,) Odin Sphere: Leifthrasir is a remake of Odin Sphere for the PlayStation 2. It boast a scenario and world design that is studded with diverse characters, each having a story to tell. The main selling point of Odin Sphere is on how the story is delivered, the lore is divided into five sections and is portrayed by our five protagonists; each facing adversities along their way, seeking the end line of their respective journeys.

Gameplay is powered by your run-off-the-mill Vanillaware formula... SIDE-SCROLLING! Navigation occurs in a 2.5D-esque environment where you traverse through sectioned areas, either indicated as circular, the area loops until you select a particular point of entry/exit, or the typical box-type, the area doesn't loop and is delimited by a left and right entry/exit points. Default controls are comfortable and is customizable as you wish.

Different characters mean different weapons, as well as varying skills and tactics when duking it out with enemies. The biggest improvement in the battle system is that each character now has their own unique skill sets as opposed to the classic game having some particular skills shared. If you thought that Odin Sphere is a "button mashing is a breeze"-type of game then you are dead wrong, enemies can engulf you with their skills, inflicting huge damage to your character, but!, one can utilize various vulnerability frames along with; good skill, equipment, and intuitive use of items to their advantage.

The visuals of Odin Sphere: Leifthrasir is a wonderful sight! It completes the form-factor of the game by a long shot, and is arguably one of the best. Powered by the PlayStation Vita's 5-inch screen brings you high-definition visuals all for your eyes to glorify. Out with the beauty and in with the... well... downside; some dungeons lack variety and will feel somewhat repetetive at times, and the most marring is that one can notice frame-drops during particular instances where there's so much chaos happening in the screen i.e. multiple effects setting-off during battle sequences.

Odin Sphere is based heavily on Norse mythology, partly Shakespearian, and a touch of fairy tales. With that in mind you can blatantly guess what the soundtrack would sound like, yes, the game induces balladic themes along with the help of some modern musical pieces that can keep you focused while playing. I would also like to mention that stunning cast of voice actors that had helped bring the characters to life, and one of them is the legendary Fumihiko Tachiki who played as Demon Lord Odin and is known for his roles in Bleach (Kenpachi Zaraki) and Gintama (MADAO).

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Odin Sphere: Leifthrasir is one of those games that I can consider as a game that had delivered what it had advertised. The overall quality starting from the scenario up until its bare mechanics is truly satisfying. Its shortcomings tends to be overlooked due to its immersive gameplay and its dreaded enticement of "What happens next?" If you had played Odin Sphere in the past, I'm sure that you'll enjoy what Odin Sphere: Leifthrasir has in store.
Overall Score