PS3 Previews: Atelier Ayesha: The Alchemist of Dusk Preview

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Atelier Ayesha: The Alchemist of Dusk Preview

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Scheduled release date:

March 5, 2013

Publisher:

Tecmo Koei/NIS America

Developer:

Gust

Number Of Players:

1

Genre:

RPG

Release Date:

March 5, 2013

If there’s one series that has continually delivered the old-school goods for JRPG fanatics, it’s the Atelier series. It has maintained a turn-based combat mechanic throughout the years and has also provided players with an increasingly in-depth item creation system. Alchemy has always been a central focus of the franchise and those interested in experimenting and micromanagement usually get a lot of entertainment out of any given entry. Now, hot on the heels of Atelier Meruru comes Atelier Ayesha: The Alchemist of Dusk, which features a new protagonist, new story and an updated battle system.

Known as Atelier Ayesha: The Alchemist of Twilight Land in Japan, the game focuses on Ayesha Altugle, an alchemist who is very much a loner. She spends most of her time in her workshop, creating her special medicines and unfortunately, suffering from memory loss. However, when her sister, Nio, goes out to gather materials one day and never returns, Ayesha must act. She resolves to find and save her sister, who is oddly trapped in an unknown dimension. Hence, it’s a quest to retrieve both her lost sister and her lost memory so hopefully, the storyline will be worth experiencing.

Obviously, alchemy is a big part of that experience, too. It can be straightforward or highly complex, depending on how much effort and time you put into the discipline. You combine two to four ingredients of varying properties and voila, you obtain something entirely new. You can also enhance existing items, such as expanding the blast radius of a fire potion, and it’s always important to gather raw materials and recipes as you travel. You’ll also want to fiddle around and experiment on your own; you never know what you might stumble upon. Any new creation could prove highly beneficial on the field of battle, so don’t hesitate to try different combinations. Random discovery is half the fun!

And speaking of combat, the traditional turn-based system is back but this time around, there’s a new buddy mechanic. This actually bends the standard turn-based rules a little, as party members can leap to your defense and even execute counter attacks. It’s all based on your active command gauge; if it’s high enough, you might even finish an encounter without ever letting the enemy move. Also, the position of your party members is a concern as enemies will take more damage when being struck from behind (same goes for you, of course). So between the new buddy system and the strategic placement of your allies, the fighting will definitely be more dynamic than ever before.

Lastly, as per Ayesha’s memory, there will be memory points to accumulate that will help her unlock her hazy past. Certain actions will earn her memory points, and this can also lead to permanent upgrades and stat boosts as well. Other new additions include the fresh Diary System that lets you keep track of your activities – and is a great tool for people with memory issues – and character-unique skills and abilities. If you get hooked, you can look forward to future downloadable content that will offer new costumes, new characters, and even new areas to explore. Atelier Ayesha: The Alchemist of Dusk launches on March 5 exclusively for the PlayStation 3.

1/17/2013 Ben Dutka

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Comments (13 posts)

WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, January 18, 2013 @ 1:05:03 AM
Reply

I feel blessed that we get these in the states, I'll have it for sure. Though I hear our European friends won't get the Japanese voices unfortunately.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, January 18, 2013 @ 1:32:14 AM
Reply

People (Ben I'm looking at you) should also not forget that Hyperdimension Neptunia Victory is coming out this spring.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Friday, January 18, 2013 @ 1:33:50 PM

Yes, I know. I just can't be too excited about it; I didn't like the first one.

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dmiitrie
Friday, January 18, 2013 @ 1:55:33 AM
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*sigh* I keep telling myself that I need to start on this series, yet I keep putting it off. Anyway....the memory aspect sounds especially promising. If they use a fraction of the skill in utilizing it that mistwalker did for kaim's flashbacks in lost odyssey, fans will be in for a treat.

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laxpro2001
Friday, January 18, 2013 @ 9:47:56 AM
Reply

If I was only going to play one game in the Atelier series, which should it be? My backlog is intense but I am in the mood for a fun JRPG. Disregard price (obviously older games would be cheaper). Particularly do any of them have a really engaging story that makes you care about the characters? Or rather do all of them?

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, January 18, 2013 @ 12:20:13 PM

That's a problem, these aren't engaging and epic JRPGs. They are casual, often silly, fun times. However the characters are very well thought out and presented. I recommend Atelier Totori as the main focus is on exploring new areas and fighting with a little less need to toy with the alchemy. The time is a bit tight for me though, if you don't like time limits Meruru is more open.

The last 3 feature many of the same characters so it's fun to see where they go in life, I just like Totori's the best.

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Looking Glass
Friday, January 18, 2013 @ 12:34:08 PM

Engaging? Well that's a bit of a tough one here. The stories in the Atelier games are generally sweet and simple, at least compared to the more "epic" style RPGs. But even so I think the chances are good that you will come to care about at least some of the characters. Not necessarily because of the story, but because of the characters themselves. In other words I think it's safe to say that the Atelier games are largely character driven as opposed to largely story driven.

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Looking Glass
Friday, January 18, 2013 @ 12:46:20 PM
Reply

Ordinarily the release of a game like this would be great news.

But I'm a afraid this time around there are at least two significant problems.

First the game will NOT have dual audio in the NA or PAL releases even though most if not all of the past western releases of the Atelier series have had dual audio.

Fans are unhappy about this and some of them have claimed that they will be holding off on purchasing the game because of it.

Another slap in the face to fans is that unlike previous Atelier releases there won't be any special or limited editions of the game released. Fans are not happy about that either.

NISA has already said that the decision to omit dual audio was not theirs. So in all likelihood the party that is to blame is Tecmo Koei who is publishing the game this time around.

Tecmo Koei recently purchased Gust Inc and this had fans worried that it would negatively effect Gust's games. And it looks like those fans were right.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, January 18, 2013 @ 1:30:03 PM

The publisher says the NA release will get Japanese audio.

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Looking Glass
Friday, January 18, 2013 @ 1:57:13 PM

@WorldEndsWithMe

And I would very much like for you to be right. But I'm afraid I'm forced to greet such a claim with skepticism. You see one of the moderators of the NIS America forums (emphasis on AMERICA) has outright said that the game will not have dual audio.

So with regard to your claim of "The publisher says the NA release will get Japanese audio" I must ask what the source of your claim is.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, January 18, 2013 @ 2:03:29 PM

My source is PSU here http://www.psu.com/a018010/Atelier-Ayesha-European-North-American-release-date-announced

citing this tweet: https://twitter.com/tecmokoeieurope/status/291191067754237953

And this note from Tecmo Koei regarding EU: https://twitter.com/tecmokoeieurope/status/291191067754237953

So maybe NA will still have it.

Last edited by WorldEndsWithMe on 1/18/2013 2:05:12 PM

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Looking Glass
Friday, January 18, 2013 @ 2:42:34 PM

@WorldEndsWithMe

Yes I had heard that Tecmo Koei had made some contradictory tweets about this issue. This is very strange and sadly it looks like it's not reliable.

Ultmately I'm led to believe that both the NA and PAL versions will not have dual audio.

I would suggest you go to the Siliconera website, type in "Atelier Ayesha" into the search box, and see what you get.

Last edited by Looking Glass on 1/18/2013 2:46:51 PM

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, January 18, 2013 @ 2:02:38 PM
Reply

Think I'll play some Meruru.

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