The never afraid to retrain your tongue, Los Angeles based importer, NIS America has imported the Japanese dungeon crawling RPG, Legasista to the United States. The title is nearly a reversed portmanteau of the words sister and legacy, revealing the game’s genre and main storylines. Though the System Prisma developed game received a full retail release in the Land of The Rising Sun, Southern Californians and other Americans will have to download the Playstation 3 exclusive from the Playstation Network.
Legasista is probably best summed up as a Japanese 16 bit take on Diablo. The Anime themed adventure is set in a futuristic world where technology is largely forgotten. The main character is appropriately named Alto and he has gone to the Ivory Tower looking for a way to break the curse on his sister who has been imprisoned in a crystal. Alto arrives at the Ivy Tower where he finds the care taker for the facility and eventually a weaponized girl robot called Melize who has lost her memory and now also wants to find her sister. To accomplish both of these goals, Alto and his party must explore the dungeons of the Ivory Tower.
The first 11 levels of the Ivory Tower serve as a tutorial where Legasista teach players the basics of the RPG. From the simple stuff like jumping and swinging your sword or shooting a bow, the tutorial finishes with enhancements and party management. The levels and mechanics are fairly old school Zelda-ish. The dungeons are 2D affairs with an entrance point, locked doors, warp points, and an exit. Between where you come in and where you leave are of course traps, monsters, loot and even progressively more difficult to defeat bosses. Exiting each level returns Alto and his party to the outside of the tower.
As mentioned before, Alto has the ability to attack, jump and dash with the face buttons on the controller. The right bumper can either use or throw an inventory item and the corresponding trigger cycles the active inventory items. The left bumper uses a special skill, initially, Alto trap vision with the trigger selecting which party member’s skills are active. The right analog stick allows you to switch out party members either for their attacks or because your current character’s health is depleting. The equipment each party member has equipped will also degrade as they are attacked.
Besides health and equipment condition there are many other RPG mainstays, like adverse effects from poison from enemies or traps. Luckily the traps will also damage your enemies and serve as environmental attacks. You will have to get skilled at using them to your advantage if you want to keep progressing in Legasista. An unusual wrinkle to the game is that you will grow an army of minion sprouts that you can send to search for treasure or hidden levels. These levels are typically more difficult but will offer appropriate rewards for electing to complete them.
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