IMPRESSIONS: Legrand Legacy

Thursday, June 8th, 2017

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Legrand Legacy | Dungeon design

Legrand Legacy is a game where I could’ve sworn I’d heard the name before, but knew nothing about. As it turns out, it’s an RPG for PC developed by Semisoft, and it was funded on Kickstarter with extended crowdfunding having ended at the end of May.

Legrand Legacy is a straightforward turn-based RPG, where you command a party of three characters in combat. Action selection is menu-based, with different action categories – such as attacking, using items, using spells and miscellaneous actions bound to the four cardinal directions on the stick. Selecting any option other than attack opens another similar menu, where you can assign spells (known in-game as “Grimoire”) and items to the four directions, which are the only items and spells available in combat. Once you have four or more party members, you can switch them out freely, without taking a turn. While the random buttons used for the prompts take some getting used to, it reminds me of something you’d see in Super Mario series RPGs, and I like how it adds some variety to the otherwise standard combat.

Legrand Legacy | Combat UI

While attacking – or doing anything other than support actions or using items – timed button prompts appear on-screen, dramatically reducing effectiveness if you miss completely or increasing it if you hit the prompt with perfect timing. While these take some getting used to, they generally work fairly well, once you fix a fairly major bug that prevents them from working at all when you first start the game. Fortunately I was able to circumvent it fairly easily, but the fact that it happens every time I start the game is frustrating, and will hopefully be ironed out by the time the game makes it to release.

The navigation and visual design in towns and dungeons is very reminiscent of PS1-era Final Fantasy games, with 3D character models moving around a pre-rendered 2D background. However, battles are not random, instead represented as amorphous black blobs with glowing orange faces moving around dungeon maps. Approaching from behind gives you a free turn, and vice versa, as is standard for RPGs that have similar systems. Unfortunately, the visual design works against this mechanic; while the backgrounds are beautiful, they can make it difficult to judge depth and precise location of protagonist Finn and enemies alike. It’s also easy to get stuck on scenery, completely immobilizing you and leaving you open to getting ambushed by enemies near you. The music is nothing special, although it has an interesting middle-eastern flair to match the desert setting, and certain background noises and animations seem like placeholders which will be replaced by higher-quality assets in the future.

Legrand Legacy | Dialogue

From a technical perspective, Legrand Legacy is in a good position for a beta to be. It has technical and polish issues – such as the input bug I mentioned above, as well as smaller things like characters’ portraits being replicated in conversations and myriad grammatical errors in conversations. However, the most serious bug I encountered was certain cases where, after having Finn guard and defeating an enemy on the same turn, the combat sequence tends to freeze, with no way to continue the fight.

While the game has a solid foundation from a gameplay perspective, the story is where it stumbles a bit. I won’t go into a whole lot of detail, the characters in particular took their time to grow on me, coming across as a mismatched, dysfunctional group that only stays together out of convenience. The difficulty curve is also quite harsh, with forced grinding, limited money with expensive support items, and a healer who doesn’t get a proper healing spell aside from regeneration for several levels. However, it has plenty of promise, and I look forward to seeing what it looks like when it releases later this year.

About Chris Melchin

Chris is a computer science student who has been gaming ever since he knew what to do with a Super Nintendo controller. Since then, he's owned every Nintendo console to be released. His favourite games include Xenoblade Chronicles, Persona 4 Golden, and Little Busters. He started watching anime in high school, and his favourite series is Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood. He also writes Vocaloid music for his personal YouTube channel, and has a (slight) obsession with Megurine Luka.




  • Revinia Tanyadjaja

    Hi Chris, thanks for playing Legrand Legacy and for the general constructive criticism. You are right, some assets are still placeholder. We’ve also hired a professional proofreader but some dialogs haven’t been edited in the game. Can you tell me more about this bug “once you fix a fairly major bug that prevents them from working at all when you first start the game”? Feel free to email me at revinia.t[at]semisoft[co].

    • Keichi Morisato

      i look forward to seeing the final result of your project. many people say that turn based games need to die because they are a product of limitations, and while that may be true, there are still fans of that style of combat.

    • Revinia Tanyadjaja

      Thanks Keichi. My husband, Henry, is the lead game designer and he’s still a big fan of turn-based games (hence Legrand Legacy :p). If you want to follow our development news, you can sign up for our weekly newsletter in legrandlegacy.com.

    • Keichi Morisato

      i signed up.

      awesome! i have always wanted to see how pre rendered backgrounds would look with modern technology, sure we don’t NEED to use them any more, but i want to see old artistic techniques survive. hopefully you guys implement a proper Final Fantasy/Dragon Quest style over world over a hub map where you choose the location via a list, that was something that i hated in FFX.

    • Thanks for signing up! An update from MIX E3 should be coming up soon 🙂 We also have a world map, although that’s something you can only try in our Alpha/Beta (the current demo available on Steam is Pre-Alpha). Hmm yeah the choice for pre-rendered background was definitely an artistic choice to recreate that classic JRPG feel.

    • Keichi Morisato

      awesome, i look forward to seeing how your game progresses over time.

    • Dogi

      They definitely weren’t a product of limitations. Action rpgs existed at the same time as turn based ones in gaming’s infancy.

    • Keichi Morisato

      i am aware, and i have stated the same thing, but still, that is the argument i get when talking against turn based games.

  • Jeremy Barnes

    Am I missing a link to the game’s site somewhere?

    • Revinia Tanyadjaja

      You can visit our website: Legrand legacy.com or Tweet to us (@legrandlegacy) or check out our FB page (Legrand Legacy) or I guess you can leave me a message here 🙂