Legasista Review

Legasista Review

For those who have followed NIS America's prior releases, you're probably already aware that the publisher caters to a specific segment of the Japanese RPG market. While the publisher is most known for their long-running Disgaea series, they're also known for another smaller series: ClaDun. Developed by System Prisma, the series mixed JRPG concepts with a toned-down version of the normally hard-as-nails rougelike genre. After two outings on the Sony PSP, the developer has created a new spin-off title of sorts with the PS3 release of Legasista. Fans of ClaDun will likely pick this up, but what about those who haven't?

Legasista's world is a place where the populace has grown to fear any sort of technology as the advancements in AI and the explosive growth of magic nearly decimated the human race. Almost 1000 years after those events, the player is introduced to a man named Alto who ventures to one of the forgotten towers, Ivy Tower, in an attempt to turn back his sister into a human after being transformed into a crystal by unsealing some ancient technology buried in its depths.

After exploring around he comes across a female robot who is about to kill him in return for restoring his sister until she suddenly breaks down. This starts a chain of events where Alto must travel through the tower's many labyrinths to recover data chips which will restore the robot's memory. Sadly, pretty much after this point the story takes a backseat to the gameplay. However, it is a nice diversion from the repetitive nature of the genre and does serve its purpose even if it's largely forgettable.

If you've played either of the ClaDun games, Legasista will feel extremely familiar to you. It's essentially the HD progression of those titles as it continues on the dungeon crawling aspect both of those titles were known for. After customizing your party members and putting together a three-person team in the game's main hub, the Railyard, you'll enter a new section of the Ivy Tower which is composed of various zones which are comprised of multiple sub-zones, some of which feature multiple floors. Inside each of these dungeons you'll be evading (or attacking) enemies, avoiding traps and flipping switches in your search for the all-elusive exit.

Like other rougelikes, Legasista's combat takes place on a 2D-plane. All attacks are tied to a single button, but almost all of the enemies will deflect your attacks unless you hit them in the correct dungeon and will severely impact your health if you don't use caution. There's also a number of spells available at yout disposal, which varies per character, so planning ahead the proper team is a must when venturing into the dungeons. Thankfully it's pretty easy to switch between each of the three characters with a simple flick of the right analog stick.


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