Friday, February 15, 2008

Game Informer reviews Lost Odyssey

...and gives it a fair shake, even posting TWO scores. Wow, thanks Game Informer. I'm glad they understood what makes the game so special.

"Immortal Beloved: Game Informer Reviews Lost Odyssey

Main Review

"The RPG genre as a whole is one of the most conflicted in gaming today. It is built on conventions that are over 20 years old, and as much as role-playing titles thrive on these traditions, developers also struggle against them, attempting to find new and innovative ways to engage gamers. This is not a battle that Lost Odyssey fights. The latest epic from RPG legend Hironobu Sakaguchi is not diplomatic, and doesn’t attempt to find a middle ground between convention and innovation; it sides with convention all the way. The result is a rich experience replete with classic gameplay, familiar mechanics, and one of the most compelling tales ever told on the Xbox 360."


What really takes center stage in Lost Odyssey (especially in contrast to Mistwalker’s last title, Blue Dragon) is the story. The immortal warrior Kaim is one of the most intriguing RPG protagonists I’ve played, and his dispassionate detachment is a far cry from the usual gotta-save-the-world hero. The universe he and his companions inhabit is a visually stunning fusion of fantasy and steampunk, and it serves as an excellent backdrop for the game’s major revelations. Why Kaim has lived so long, how the immortals relate to each other, and how they lost their memories are just a few of the mysteries that make this adventure much more surprising than its traditional structure may lead you to believe."


As thankful as I am that there are role-playing titles that strive to innovate, I am also glad that games like Lost Odyssey are still being made. It is a testament to the philosophy that time-tested concepts, when implemented well, can be just as gratifying as they were at the genre’s inception."

Score: 8.5/10

- Joe Juba

Second Opinion:

"Lost Odyssey is Mistwalker’s answer to Final Fantasy. More accurately, it is Mistwalker’s answer to Final Fantasy X. Unmistakable similarities can be seen throughout the entire game, from the tech-infused fantasy art style to the strategic flow of combat. Hironobu Sakaguchi may have left Square, but his enthusiasm for making Final Fantasy is still running hot through his veins. Whether you view this game as derivative or see it as the ultimate fan service, it’s impossible to ignore this heartfelt story. It’s wondrously contemplative, and backed by strong character performances. The cinematography is also breathtaking, but surprisingly, some of the most emotional moments come from pages of text. While the combat system could be entered into the dictionary as the definition of cookie cutter RPG, I did get some big kicks out of the composite magic system and reflex-based ring attacks. It also offers a nice variety of monsters and a handful of great boss fights. World exploration is as linear as can be, but the sights are simply stunning and the interactivity you have with your surroundings can be quite fun. In the end, Lost Odyssey won’t change your perception of RPGs, but rather remind you of why you love them."

Score: 8.75/10

- Andrew Reiner"

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