I think that having over 30h of game experience and befriending the most of the core mechanics, I’m ready to give some feedback.
In those hours i felt that its even addicting. To be more objective i needed to take a break from the game.
(While re writing this feedback i got myself 50h of playtime - yes this game is soo good)
The game itself is gold. BUT with some minor scratches and stains. I will divide my feedback in categories. (Note that i have spent most of the game in PL version so i might twist some names, Keyboard + mouse). I’ll not mention the gorgeous art style as its subjective opinion.
Beside the feeling of movement speed being a little slow in Dungeons (missing a run feature that wont break Garrison dash). Puzzles and quest are fun and easy - if not too easy!
Game word feels a little empty (of life - wildlife/ people in non combat areas). I know I’m asking too much …
I miss the ability to be able to set up my keybindings + no explanation of what each key do.
Places, events , encounters need time to be unlocked. That’s also a good thing - player wont be overwhelmed.
Story is set on a island. that from a jRPG perspective isn’t that big. There is a lot of backtracking, players should memorize most of the environment and places they have encountered if they wish to get all the cool stuff later ingame.
Aside from some collectables, mandatory mob fights (when you are 4lvl above them they will ignore you) we also have events and from time to time a mini boss fights (pirate airship crew attacks you) and even treasure hunts.
Its also a pleasing surprise that we can use fast travel in form of teleports.
Counting all pros and cons of traveling, i dare to say its a pleasure.
Dungeons are made up from few rooms. In the way they are created, each time you enter the dungeon it will look different (aside the mandatory few rooms- like entrance and boss room). Each of dungeon is unique, tell a different story and each of them have their own set of secrets, aside the “smash walls” secrets.
Player will have to reveal all assets the dungeon on the current run can give him OR find a map and observer (both of them can be found on nearly every dungeon). Map will show all the rooms and observer will show what can you find in each room.
The only cons is that only one ability of all 5 available characters can influence the environment as all the rest effects only playable characters and enemies. I would wish to see more secrets using other chars/abilities.
I also wish to see that a dungeons wouldn’t play the same story events each time you enter the dungeon.
Enemies we encounter are not i great numbers (let say that you can clean each room in 2-3 fights), that have its good and bad side - I give you to judge that. Imo that’s a good thing counting our lvl progression.
Each of them represent something deferent, something fresh. Its fun to watch them, how they behave and interact witch each other. When you rest in the inn there is even a small event. Sadly we don’t see its results of those night escapade… like Monica and Gully had blow up something to weak up everyone.
Lvl progression is slow. And that’s a good thing since you can take your time doing things and you wont “break” the difficulty too quick.
The only problem is when you get your additional team mates they have preset lvl - in case of Knolan i had to lvl him up for few hours till he was on the same “footing” as others.
Are fun and engaging - they force players to think tactically and watch over the battlefield more carefully.
But what I found strange that status proc on chars/enemies have not the name of the status but the source of it. Player have remember to what status he caused to an enemy so he can exploit it with a dmg ability.
Giving us 6 characters (5 for beta sadly T_T) the games give us a lot of opportunities to mix them up and try something new.
Instruction says that there are 5 tiers/grades of equipment : common, uncomon, rare, epic and LEGENDARY (sadly i have not found even one …).
Each item can give different set of stats to the char. You can even enhance it with enchantments. While the stats are set for each item - player is free to chose whatever the enchantments he or she wants. Further increasing the character building.
From time to time in dungeons the game gives you opportunity to grade up your equipment via special encounter (weapons only, we don’t know if we will be able to apply it for other items), from any lover grade straight up to epic. But you also craft your item from the beginning as Epic grade (this also apply to enchantments).
Player will will swap the equipment each 2-4 lvl. At fist is was “too soon” but after a while its a nice linear progression.
And a additional thing to work with.
Player also may encounter “special " items that will have different / " strange” stats benefiting only specific build of the character.
Each char have unique set of abilities (aside some similarities of defensive ones).
What i noticed. The most common is that the game itself don’t give an explanation what each stat do - and how those number values from items/passives affect our overall (%) stats (like crit chance). Aside the Attack strength i don’t feel like other stats have effect on the abilities.
Aside the fact that most of us don’t understand the way some of them works (+x% to something) Its a great Idea to build a character - if we want a more aggressive/defensive builds you give talents accordingly. But since we have limited to under below of the max possibilities we cant say if those are balanced. But as i understand its a great endgame feature for those who want to squeeze all they can from a character.
Its nice to see that skills have synergy with other abilities.
Balance of skills is some of my concerns. For e.g. Calibreto. One of his shooting skill hits 8 times to a random enemies at lvl 15 its his most damaging ability. Its one target counterpart its about 1/3 weaker and the one that exploit status is even weaker in compassion. EVEN if we count armor ignore feature.
From my experience with enemies that “guard up” and their defense highly rises,
More or less all of the dungeon abilities have its purpose. That sad… I still cant figure it out why Monica invisibility to have no X uses … but 30 sec! With even slower movement speed you cant even go pass most of the enemies you encounter - all you can do i try to get some gold out of them.
Crafting / Enhancements:
Crafting and Enhancements are easy to understand and implement.Sadly you cant find any special blueprints / recipes in dungeons. But the most annoying is to craft the mats- especially when you need like much more of them.
There is however a faster way to craft material… by holding E button - but it will only soothes transition between each craft procedure
I dare to say that the most fun fishing minigame i have played was in Breath of fire 4. In case of BC it more or less a chore…
I even don’t know when to start… Its just there … Mechanics so simple to the point that is painful. Its not entertaining.
In theory you only act according to movement of the fish. With the right tools (fishing rod and bait) and “know how”, you will only trow the bait as close as you can and pres left.
At first i told myself that the bar above the fish is their stamina bar … sadly its our line endurance. After a while … Is that It ?!
The pond itself is very small and to catch all the fishes takes no more than min. After you catch them all - that’s it…
Fishing tools have only endurance and lure strength.
If you ask me how to make it more active and entertaining?
Bait should have a small area of effect - so the how far we trow it will have a meaning. Atm it will lure all the fish visible.
Fish should have a stamina bar - so we can have a fair fight.
Endurance of the line should be reworked - represent how much its strained or loose it is.
<For the record I don’t wish to get a carbon copy of what we got in BoF- but the best of what we already have.>
Best place to try your strength. You get points for completing a challenges in mere 20 min- each challenge is composed of stages - each have 4 waves of enemies. After you end second (as for 13 lvl challenge have only two stages) you encounter a buffed version of the first dungeon boss.
This not only test your gear but also test your judgment and tactics. I LIKE IT.
Normally in all cases we have E as a functional button. why we have 1 or 2 when encounter a node with more than one event ? Its inconsistent.
When i got myself Knolan to the party. For the first time the party screen showed up. It took my few hours till i get to know how to swap characters (in the inn -_- ) there is no information where and how to change your party (instruction).
Quest have little or no info about them - for e.g. where you got it.