E3 2012: Ragnarok Odyssey (hands on)

by: Matt -
     It looks like XSeed and Game Arts are trying to beat Capcom to the punch on Monster Hunter styled games with Ragnarok Odyssey. I don't want this to sound of like a negative, but it's surprising to see what Game Arts has come up with after being inspired by Capcom's, well, monster of a series, especially considering how wildly different a game this is from their previous efforts of Lunar and Grandia.

     Given a PS Vita and told to just give it a go after a short introduction, Ragnarok Odyssey felt nothing like the game it was originally birthed from. Instead it felt like a mix between Devil May Cry and Monster Hunter, with combos that were taking place on land or in the air, and sending enemies flying in every which direction, bowling over any other enemies in their path. Taking up arms as a 'Sword Warrior,' I was immediately familiar with the weak attack, and strong attack combos, that offered a decent amount of branching with varied results. There is a stamina bar that will limit dashing and jumping, but it refills without any hassle and doesn't drain over time as a mission drags on, making the game a little simpler than Monster Hunter, and maybe a little bit more accessible as well.

     The game looks great and the characters and enemies of the Ragnarok franchise transfer well to 3D. The early areas looked a little barren, but the world was colorful and vibrant. The character creator was not available at the time, but it is being touted as having over 20,000 combinations based on gender, facial features, accessories and more. There are a total of six classes, the Sword Warrior, the Hunter, the Hammersmith, the Assassin, the Mage, and the Cleric, offering players plenty of different ways to enjoy Ragnarok Odyssey.

Players can also form up to a 4-man party using ad-hoc or wi-fi connections, making it easy to get a group of friends together when Ragnarok Odyssey is released later this summer.

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