system_0201_zoom0201 In the  15th installment of the long-running Atelier series, Atelier Escha & Logy: Alchemists of the Dusk Sky sticks close to the Atelier series mantra. Incorporating the series’ trademark real-time combat and item fusing, this latest adventure provides an entertaining RPG that offers beautiful graphics and character designs to keep you entertained for dozens of hours. The game begins with protagonist’s Escha and Logy training to be top notch alchemists in a backwater town with with very little resources. As a native to the town, Escha has a lot of information about the surrounding area and is clued up on the all-important synthesizing process, whereas city boy Logy takes lead of fights but elsewhere in game he generally stands in the back looking sultry while Escha does all the work, whether it be synthesizing or talking to people. At the start of the game you get offered the option of playing as either Escha or Logy with Escha’s playthrough giving more opportunity to craft, and Logy’s focusing more on combat with a slightly more serious tone . system_0301_zoom0101 Compared to the other elements of the game, the story takes a back seat and following along with it isn’t essential to you enjoying the game overall. You have the story set up the premise for Escha & Logy needing to reach the island in the sky, then follow the missions to improve their job and try to reach the floating island,  reminiscent of something out of a Studio Ghibli film.  You’ll meet a variety of people and animals along the way and will have to complete a multitude of side quests alongside the main mission to getting to the Island in the sky. Time plays an important role as you are often given deadlines to complete missions. If you have time, you can also spend it by foraging for ingredients to make things and get treats for your future pets or minions (depending on if you decide to use the critters as fighters or forgers often). I found myself more interested in exploring and collecting stuff but I often got killed in battles, so if that happens, you lose time and go back to the village which is quite annoying. In a new feature added to the series, you can battle with up to six characters in your party, giving you 3 more than in the previous games. This allows for more strategy and faster-paced fights, I particularly found the support attacks useful to shield Escha for impeding face slaps by shoving Logy in front instead. Also a nice cameo from Atelier Ayesha meeting the ditsy witch Wilbell in this game a number of times, also being connected to the DLC of witch outfits for Escha I assume. world_0102_zoom0102 I loved the character designs so much, story wasn’t an issue, it was all about the pretty hand drawn style characters. The games graphics have improved on the ps3 drastically as everything is now rendered the same so the characters no longer look chibi and low resolution in a realistic background. The music score has kept to it’s high standards and the quality of audio is better with great voice acting with familiar voices. Considering you can swap to the original Japanese audio I was very pleased with the American and stuck with it. I say ’American’ as some of the accents stuck out especially for Escha. 


Review Summary

In this superb entry to the series, Atelier Escha & Logy focuses on time management, synthesizing and fighting with short burst of comical story. Surpassing the predecessors in graphics and audio, this game is definitely a crowd pleaser and would make a great game for new players to RPG’s to try.