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Etrian Odyssey

Etrian Odyssey III, DeathSpank and PAX

DeathSpank Screenshot

So DeathSpank is out. I saw it at the Penny Arcade Expo (PAX) last year and I couldn't see what all the excitement was about, but I was willing to give it the benefit of the doubt. Time went by, and I never saw anything that really caught my attention. Didn't see much on it at all, really. Then, all of a sudden, it's available for download and everyone in my Twitter feed is talking about it.

Etrian Odyssey II: Heroes of Lagaard Review

Etrian Odyssey II: Heroes of Lagaard Screenshot Etrian Odyssey II: Heroes of Lagaard Screenshot

I'll be perfectly frank with you—I did not expect to like this game.

Grinding for experience, going broke buying equipment that only increases a character's strength by two points, drawing a map by hand through floor after floor of twisting labyrinth, and being crushed by random encounters in the first round of battle are not things that I generally look for in my RPGs. In fact, I would generally say that these are all characteristics of outdated game design best left in the 16-bit era and forgotten.

Etrian Odyssey II: Heroes of Lagaard

Game Description: Journey to a floating castle in this dungeon RPG Sequel. In the Grand Duchy of High Lagaard, it is said that the Duke is descended from inhabitants of a castle in the sky. When an unforeseen crisis befalls the nation, it is decreed that the first explorer to retrieve the Grail of Kings from that mythical floating palace will be rewarded with wealth and fame beyond imagining. Enter the central city of Lagaard and begin your journey to the clouds! Etrian Odyssey II boasts an all-star development team, led by director Shigeo Komori. Composer Yuzo Koshiro returns as well, in addition to character designer Yuji Himukai and monster designer Shin Nagasawa, who both worked on the original Etrian Odyssey.

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