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Etrian Odyssey IV: Legends of the Titan Review

Etrian Odyssey IV: Legends of the Titan Review

Ever since Etrian Odyssey's first release back in 2007, the dungeon crawler RPG series has been known for being tough, but rewarding. It harkens back to the oldest of the old-school classics that fans of the genre fondly remember. Each entry in the series further refined those aspects, but the series was never that accessible to newcomers. The newest entry in the franchise, Etrian Odyssey IV: Legends of the Titans, attempts to fix that issue and it does so wonderfully.

Etrian Odyssey IV plays very close to the standard dungeon crawler RPG formula. After selecting your difficulty level, the game puts you in the shoes of an unnamed adventurer and has you create a party of five (including yourself) from the seven initially available classes. These range from the generic healer, mage and archer to more unique jobs such as a dancer. Each these jobs have their own pros, cons and unique abilities. There's also quite a lot of customisation when it comes to the art styles for each character.

This class system is easily one of Etrian Odyssey IV's highlights. Learning skills is done by using class points which are gained by levelling up. Players can see the full skill tree from the outset, with the latter abilities being locked off by level requirements or because a certain number of points haven't been acquired yet.

Like previous Etrian Odyssey titles, though, there aren't enough points to go around, so players will need to chart out what abilities they want to unlock ahead of time. To help alleviate the need to reroll an entirely new character to unlock other skills, Etrian Odyssey IV allows players to go back two levels in return for resetting all of their used class points. So if you needed a specific ability for a boss, you just need to utilize this game mechanic and re-level two more levels if necessary.

This also becomes useful when the ability to subclass opens up, which lets the characters learn abilities from other classes while still keeping their main class. For example, you could have a Dancer learn health and status healing abilities from the Medic class when there isn't a need to utilize the Dancer's dancing enhancement moves.

For fans of the previous game's difficulty, however, you shouldn't be worried as Etrian Odyssey IV still has that difficulty you've come to expect out of the game. You have your normal run-of-the-mill enemy groups like any other dungeon RPG, but what makes Etrian Odyssey special is its super-bosses known as F.O.E.'s, known by their full name Formido Oppugnatura Exsequen. Each of these super-bosses have their own unique twist compared to the other enemies on the map, such as special attacks or heightened stats. Each of these bosses work as a kind of "puzzle boss" as they tend to require specific strategies and abilities to be able to take them down.

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