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Played in 2023
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It’s hard not to compare this to Baldr Sky. The controls and writing are very rough in comparison, but it’s still possible to have fun with the gameplay and the absurd fast paced story.
Ar tonelico’s world is one of the most creative ones in a JRPG, the concept of the towers and the whole HYMMNOS language, created by series director Akira Tsuchiya, only helps in making this one of the most fleshed out worlds I’ve seen.
Even tough I just praised the worldbuilding on the previous paragraph, the story is quite simple and the characters are pretty uninspired. Lyner is your typical shounen lead and the heroines are pretty monotone as well with the exception of Misha, but that’s just personal bias. The side characters as well don’t serve much purpose on the narrative.
Gameplay-wise I found this game to be pretty unique on the JRPG mechanics, building up song magic while increasing the harmonics gauge is a lot of fun, unfortunately the game is pretty easy so the full potential of this combat system doesn’t get explored that much.
Overall, I still think this game is a gem even with all the characters being archetypes, the worldbuilding was enough to make me invested trough the end and the soundtrack in this game is spectacular, if you like the game’s opening, utau oka, then you certainly will love this game.