• The Etrian Odyssey series has gone on for quite some time, and when the fifth game was announced but months went by after the Japanese release without a localization, people got worried. Thankfully Atlus finally broke the silence, and now Etrian Odyssey V: Beyond the Myth is out on the 3DS in the West. The game goes back to basics for a more lean experience, while making some improvements. Although some of the features from the Untold games have been scaled back a bit. Still it’s a dungeon crawling RPG that’s worth your time.

    The Etrian series always have had a shell of a plot, with you exploring a dungeon and slowly uncovering it mysteries while avoiding/defeating FOES and huge bosses at the end of each Stratum Unlike the Untold games which focused on giving a richer story with a pre-assigned team, V goes back to the ‘create a characterless team of blank slates’. Also unlike Etrian III and IV, the game has gone back to a single dungeon with multiple floor system. This keeps things simple while also introducing new systems like the revamped Food system from the Untold games, or refining older systems like the class system.

    The Class system now is host to many new classes that haven’t been seen in the series before. Sure, these classes are mostly just reworked versions of previous classes, but due to their alterations, they can be developed in several ways to do double and triple duties to fill roles other classes would have in the past. The classes are initially race based, but you can reclass at the expense of 5 levels, although some races are better suited for certain classes. As a result of all this, you can conceivably construct a party that otherwise would not have been as viable in the past. And with the reworked food system, the game provides more opportunities to let you heal your party’s HP and TP. The food items take up a separate slot in your inventory, and they can be cooked or exchanged with NPCs for better healing items. Combat, aside from the class changes, is largely the same although the Union/Burst System is now made up of combo skills. You will use skills with one more party members, and there are a greater variety of them to learn in the skill tree. Speaking of the skill tree, it’s also been tweaked to be leaner, with a bigger focus on race skills and Mastery skills. After you clear the 2nd Stratum, you’ll get the ability to choose a Legendary Name, which is more or less a promotion for a guild member’s class. There are two options you can choose from which are specializations like whether or not you want your Botanist to focus on healing herbs or poisons. The only other requirement after the initial Stratum clearing is that the party member must be level 20. It’s a nice way of helping the player choose what ways they want their team members to develop.

    The changes made to the game are mostly for the better, but there are a few things that were cut back from the Untold games that I wish were present here. First off is the paring down of floor skip. While you can still jump to any floor you’ve visited as long as the map is at least 70% complete, you can’t travel between staircases at will anymore. And there’s the extra step of reporting your floor completion and more at the Council. The other thing is a lack of an easy mode for players that aren’t as good at dungeon crawlers or the Etrian games in general. Sure there’s no character driven story like the Untold games, but it would have been nice. The basic mode is basically picnic mode, although it’s difficulty is higher than Picnic’s. But to somewhat alleviate this, bosses and FOES are easier to deal with in general, so that’s nice. But despite these weak points, Etrian Odyssey V: Beyond the Myth is a dungeon crawler or Etrian game that fans won’t want to miss. A Solid recommend.

    Etrian Odyssey V: Beyond the Myth - Review
    The series goes back to basics for a leaner experience, while improving on previous weak points, although it doesn't quite go far enough.
    Our Score9.5
    • The new Legendary Name and class system allows for a great deal more specializations and unique party setups than before.
    • The new Food System provides an additional means of healing while in the dungeon.
    • The game lacks some decent features from the Untold games.
    9.5Overall Score
    Reader Rating: (0 Votes)

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