I am a diehard Etrian Odyssey fan. It’s one of the game series that I own all the titles released, ever since the first one was released for the Nintendo DS. So, I’ve managed to get a Japanese demo copy of the newest title, Etrian Odyssey V.
Here are some early impressions I’ve gotten from playing the demo. A reminder they can be partially incorrect due to my low knowledge of Japanese.
Overall, the game seems to have improved, fetching the best from previous games and ditching the most criticized features (I’m looking at you, Etrian Odyssey IV).
Class wise, they’re not just a copy of the previous games. They all have three skill trees: one Racial Tree, with passive skills to improve your character; a Class Tree, with the bread and butter of your class.
Finally there’s the Title Tree (unlockable when a certain part of the game is reached), which is a specialization tree that can be chosen between two possible ones.
Classes themselves are extremely varied: Fencer, the swordsman of the game relies on evasion to dodge attacks and counter, and also is a specialist on Chain (aka Follow/Link) skills.
Cestus is a front row brawler that consumes hp for more damage and can inflict binds. Dragoon is the tank class that can protect the party, summon pillboxes and shoot the enemy at the same time. The Herbalist uses Herbs to heal and Smokes to debuff and poison.
All of them have several available avatars to be picked when creating them.
The novelty is those avatars colors are fully customizable and you can even pick voices for each character (20 male, 20 female). In fact, all the NPCs in the game are fully voiced, a first for Etrian Odyssey (besides the Untold remakes).
The main stable of the game, the dungeon mapping, also gotten several improvements. Picking past improvements, the map symbols track several aspects, like if a gathering spot was used or not, closed or open treasure boxes, doors, etc).
You can even customize the pop-up with the markers and reorganized them however you want, allowing to have your most used ones easily accessible. There’s a new gathering spot, Fishing, which can be picked with a Earthrun racial skill
Monsters look prettier, in a Pokémon-ish cute way. Overall, the graphics are more detailed and shiny. The game hints there’s more towns besides the first one, with the first dungeon hosting 5 levels.
Meanwhile, have a look at our screenshot gallery.
Etrian Odyssey V is launching for the Nintendo 3DS in Japan on August 4th.