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About the product
- The 18th entry to GUSTs popular Atelier franchise.
- Takes place after the events of 2016s Atelier Sophie: The Alchemist of the Mysterious Book.
- Switch between the three paths at any point.
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The second entry in the 'Mysterious' saga follows the adventures of the enthusiastic Firis Mistlud and her loving older sister Liane Mistlud. The Mistlud sisters have lived their entire lives in the isolated town of Ertona, where Firis uses her unique ability to see where crystals of materials are buried. By way of a fateful encounter, Firis learns of the Alchemy Exam and decides to take her first step into the outside world, setting off on a grand journey to become a certified alchemist and discover the mysteries that life has to offer! Players will experience a vast world with towns, environments and other locations reaching up to ten times the size of those featured in Atelier Sophie: The Alchemist of the Mysterious Book.
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What I liked:
The world is really open world compared to Atelier Sophie
The graphics are beautiful
The alchemy is fun
The combat is nice
There's a big cast of characters
The main story is lighthearted
What I didn't like:
Enjoyed the open world but got lost quite a few times and didn't know where to go even with the maps and wished the entrances and exits to the next area showed up on the map and not just when you got close to them. Another thing I wished showed up on the map were quest points. Most of the quests showed up but sometimes they didn't or they did but weren't in the right location. Also I wish there had been fast travel between the maps available early in the game because it was a pain having to backtrack.
The graphics are beautiful but I noticed that every time Firis was moving the ground always got this fuzzy blur but maybe it was suppose to be like that.
The alchemy is fun but I still miss the Arland and Dusk alchemy systems and while I like the gathering recipe ideas I miss getting alchemy recipes from books because then you didn't miss recipes although you can use idea points to unlock a recipe if you have enough points.
The combat is fun but can be hard if you're not at the right level or don't have the right equipment. Also I miss the Dusk combat system where you can have everyone on your team and just switch people out instead of having to ask someone to leave your party and then having to go find them and ask them to join again.
I liked the main story. It was lighthearted and cute but I kinda miss the serious aspect of the Dusk game stories.
So I enjoyed Atelier Firis: The Alchemist and the Mysterious Journey. It was fun delving back into the Mysterious series again and starting a whole new alchemy journey, seeing new and old characters and exploring a open world. And while I did enjoy playing Atelier Firis I think I still like the previous alchemy games better but that's probably just because the Arland and Dusk game systems weren't too different from each other and I got used to playing the Atelier series that way but that's just me. I'm still looking forward to the next game in the Mysterious series Atelier Lydie & Suelle: The Alchemists and the Mysterious Paintings.
I give Atelier Firis: The Alchemist and the Mysterious Journey four stars.
I want to say there is a good amount of content in the game, so you don't feel cheated. There's even more outfits than Sophie's without the DLC, which have effects as well. It's nice to see some familiar faces as well from the series such as Oskar, Logy and others as well. Another plus Is multiple endings, there not just 2 or 3 but from what I can tell there's more than 8 endings! There's game extras such as artwork and voices you unlock as you progress through. There is a new game plus option which you retain some stuff like money, alchemy proficiency and equipment, also I didn't think there would be hot spring scenes, like throwing a bone to fans with some fan service. Also having the option of English and Japanese voice option is great too.
There are however signs of laziness and lack of care ranging from: Bugs, glitches, poor frame rates, graphics, recycled visuals, few English dubbed scenes. The tree logs can be very annoying when collecting ingredients.
Atelier Sophie from my experience I found to be very bug and glitch free compared to Atelier Firis. The amount of bugs and glitches did dampen the experience. There are also changes they add that were not great and were cons. Like how your party members are handled, Sophie did it better by having you switch freely instead of having to go look for a bar or Inn to find your party members talk to them and then add them back. Also I felt you were more bonded (metaphorically) with your party members in Atelier Sophie, relationship levels are back in Firis too. It was also lazy to only have very few English scenes where the Japanese voice acting actually had more scenes voiced out. For example when meeting Tiana for the first time I thought it was odd there was no voicing but the Japanese VA did. I hope next time they take their time with the game and not rush it or get lazy.
I played it without the patch and very early in the game I noticed the poor frame rates, i had updated it a day later from first playing and so far it doesn't address all of it. Playing it on PS4 Gen1 with stock HDD. I think it was firmware 4.55 at the time.
I would recommend players to start of with Sophie instead of Firis not only because of the characters and getting to know the settings but because it was much easy going by not having the timer and it being more simple than Firis. It's more casual friendly too and perhaps a good starting point to introduce people to the series. Which I researched spans for quite a long time and is very niche. Also apart from graphical recycles I didn't expect them to make so many changes which helped keep things fresh, they did bring back having a timer to get the exam done.
To end my review I really enjoyed Atelier Firis as well, I recommended it and Sophie for Jrpg fans. I may have payed around $40 but It felt worth it.
While I'd recommend you play Atelier Sophie before diving into Atelier Firis, it's not absolutely required; it just has some significance to the story. However, I know a LOT of people had problems with Atelier Sophie because of how much it slows down after the first 25% or so of the game, and how boring and hard to get through it can be throughout the latter majority until near the end, where it begins to pick up again. In Atelier Firis however, those kinds of flaws are corrected almost perfectly throughout. The game is enjoyable from start to finish, and almost always seems to get better as you go along, as opposed to feeling more boring.
Freedom is the main thing here; you'll have lots of it. Time management plays a small role here as well, but for the most part, you're allowed to do what you want when you want, with the story only dictating major events over your own personal freedom.
If you have any interest in a very freedom-full turn-based RPG with an anime artstyle, I can guarantee you'll love Atelier Firis. And if you're already interested or have even played anything in the Atelier series before, I'd recommend you check out Atelier Sophie just to see if you like it or not; like I said, it isn't required to play and understand Atelier Firis, but you still might enjoy it for what it is, as it will help you understand Atelier Firis a bit more.
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-> gets to village in new area
-> receives a fetch request somewhere in the southern part of the area
-> 20 mins later...Read more