Eiyuden Chronicle: Rising
In collaboration with 505 Games, the creator of the Suikoden series, Yoshitaka Murayama seeks to reach out to fans of the classic series through an entirely new one. Eiyuden: Hundred Heroes is a spiritual successor to Suikoden with a 2023 release in mind. There is also a spinoff game releasing earlier named Eiyuden Chronicle: Rising. This game was shown off publicly for the first time at PAX East 2022 with a playable demo.
Rising is a 2D action RPG centered around a treasure hunter named CJ. She finds herself in a village where in order to be certified, she has to do favors for the various villagers. The gameplay reminded me more of traditional side-scrolling platformers that we've covered in the past. Record of Lodoss War: Wonder Labrynth is one such example where I wouldn't call a game a Metroidvania but rather its gameplay is more grounded. The gameplay feels nostalgic, almost like a Maplestory-type experience.
Speaking to 505 Games, the game will include a party of characters with the ability to switch between each character at will. There will be hours of content with an engaging blend of an engaging in-depth fantasy story and simple addicting gameplay. Eiyuden Chronicle: Rising is slated for release very soon and I can't wait to see the full version of this title.
Rogue Spirit is, as one can guess from the title, a roguelike that involves spirits. While the game is literally what it says in the title, there's a lot going on that makes this game unique. The protagonist, a wandering spirit who is destined to save the world, is defenseless on his own. He cannot attack and enemies can tear him apart if captured. All the protagonist can do is float, or that would be the case except for one very useful skill. He can possess his fallen enemies and use them as a "host," effectively playing as the enemies themselves. This reminded me of Skul The Hero Slayer's main mechanic where Skul wears the "head" of various heroes and 'becomes' them.
An enemy that the player possess will have the same attributes as they would have as you've fought them. Some enemies have an "epic" or a "rare" variant that is stronger than their usual forms. In the two levels I played, there are various enemy types for different situations. One enemy weilds a bow, another is a nimble claw fighter, and there's of course the burly types. Each enemy also has random assigned values for their stats in relation to their class.
It's not enough to remain in your host's body however. There are certain things the player can do that is exclusive to spirit form. One example is finding secret treasure that's hidden to the naked eye. The spirit form can also detect enemy vision for stealth as well as direct themselves to the nearest exit. One important skill that's perhaps the most useful in Rogue Spirit is parrying. Unlike most titles, parrying attacks are lenient. Having an eye for enemy's attack patterns are still useful as it is the only way a player can defend themselves.
Overall I was impressed with Rogue Spirit and Elyuden Chronicle: Rising. Both titles offer something unique to players, with the former being a quick pick-up-and-play while the latter requires more of your time. 505 Games, like most of the publishers I've looked at this weekend, offer a wide array of titles across different genres. With so many to choose from, there's something for everyone out there and these two titles are examples of this.
Rogue Spirit is out on Steam via Early Access.