Publisher: NIS America
Developer: System Prisma
Console: PS3 (PSN)
Release Date: Aug 21, 2012 (US)
Legasista is a dungeon-crawling RPG that takes place in a world where, about 1000 years ago, humans had developed great technology. They used this technology to make weapons that almost wiped out the human race. Many years passed and these stories became that of legend. We begin this tale with a boy named Alto whose sister has been cursed. The key breaking this curse is rumored to be locked somewhere within the Ivy Tower, so he sets out on a quest to save his sister.
Action RPG fans will feel right at home with the basic hack n slash combat of Legasista. But don’t be fooled, as the combat system can become surprisingly deep when paired with the vast customization mechanics of the game. It features a job system that allows you to customize your characters in several different ways. When you level up you will earn JP that can be spent to obtain skills. These skills will either apply to your current job or to all the jobs you take on. But be warned: you can change your job at level 20, but your new job will start at level 1 and you will have to remain in that job until you reach level 20 again. Each job also has a set of what the game calls “frames”. These frames control what type of equipment each character can use. For example, some frames will provide great speed and low attack while others will be slower but have more attack and defense. All of the game’s action takes place in the trap filled, monster infested dungeons.
Players are introduced to the Railyard, which acts as the hub for Alto’s adventure. From here you can choose your party members, change your equipment, and access several other features that unlock as you progress in the story. In addition to the 30+ hours of story dungeons, you can also access several different types of randomly generated dungeons called Ran-geons. Don’t feel bad if you don’t make it past the 10th floor of what they call a “Baby-geon” the first time you try this!
Ran-geons come in two sizes: 30 floor “Baby-geons” or 100 floor beasts that range in difficulty from normal to just plain evil. These bad boys will be where you spend the bulk of your time grinding levels and searching for better equipment. Be warned, if you are wiped out before completing the dungeon or finding an exit gate, you will lose all the items you obtained in the dungeon as well as one half of the experience points you gained. Don’t lament too much, as even a half of the experience gained may level your characters more than once.
Not only are Ran-geons randomly generated, but each floor sports several different gates that produce a variety of effects. These effect can range from an item rate drop increase to the horror of the monsters gaining multiple levels for the next floors. For example, Angel Gates will increase your drop rate for items while not increasing the monsters’ levels very much. Devil Gates, on the other hand, have the exact opposite effect. This adds an element of strategy to the dungeons based on which gates you are presented with on each floor. These dungeons require a bit of luck as well as skill.But don’t worry if things get too difficult – you can always run around until you find an exit gate, which will take you back to the Railyard. This will allow you to keep all the items and experience you gained as well.
In the midst of all this dungeon crawling, there was a pretty decent story. I was encouraged to keep playing to see how it would all turn out. The game’s graphics are eye-pleasing and fit the game quite well. The audio is top notch; it has a wonderful soundtrack and effects that work quite well. This game may seem quite simple at first, but with all the customization it offers it is really quite deep. You will spend a lot of time challenging yourself to see if you can get to the bottom of the 100-level, extremely difficult “Ran-geons” and to see what spoils you will get out of it. My only concern is the the difficulty curve can get a little absurd at times. But difficulty is nothing that grinding and better equipment can’t solve!