Review: Etrian Odyssey 2: Heroes of Lagaard


Find out whether this game is a hit or miss to the crew of Kisaragi’s Anime Blog.

I recently acquired a DS Lite and thought which game I should get.  Of course the first thing that came to my mind was Etrian Odyssey.  Originally I wanted to get a DS Lite just for this game but ended up buying a PSP.  After a few months has passed, I finally decided to get the game and a DS Lite.  However, by then the sequel has already came out and I cannot find the first one so whatever.

Review
Not only is this game ridiculously hard and challenging but it is also ridiculously fun. I found myself playing this for hours on end just exploring the first 3 floors of the labyrinth. In the beginning, you are asked to create a guild, (I called mine Aria Co. lol) then register some characters. The main one any guild would want is a Protector and a Medic, these 2 are your primary characters for your exploration. The customization of the character is awesome, at the beginning each character is given 3 skill points to spend on either increasing their stats or learning mastery skills to unlock skills that would help the party. After you have created a guild and your characters you are set to go into the labyrinth. Exploration in this game is pretty fun, whats the touch screen used for in this game you might ask? It’s to draw out your map. Having Automap turned on it will color the floors automatically for you however, if you turn it off you will have to color it yourself and having to remember where you have stepped. Players can draw the map however they wish, however 100% accuracy will guarantee a safe journey back home.

What the challenging part about this game? Mostly the monsters are incredibly strong even for the beginning. Eventually you’ll meet up with a few FOE (mini-bosses) here and there on Floor 2. These monsters should be avoided at all times until you think you have the right level and equipment and spells to take down the FOE. FOE are able to one shot any characters you may have on the field if you are not prepared. The challenge of this game makes this game extremely fun, however the constant hours of grind trying to get your characters level up can be a bit tedious. Quests in this game are a bit too hard for the beginning as well. One quest has required the player to find a bug wing and a bent twig to make a bow for the shop. Although, the bug wing can be acquired from the venomfly on Floor 2, the bent twig can be either be cut from trees on Floor 3 or by killing monsters in Stratum 2. Currently floor 3 has one of the toughest FOE and it is impossible to proceed because there is an FOE blocking the way.

If you don’t mind hours of grind, map making, flexible character customization, cute anime character portraits, dungeon crawling this game is a definite buy. Otherwise just borrow it from a friend and try it.

Score – 9.5/10

Pros:

  • Challenging which makes it fun
  • Good art direction
  • Flexible character customization

Cons:

  • Too challenging for the beginning of the game
  • Hours of grinding can be tedious
  • FOE no longer gives players EXP making it harder to gain levels

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  2. *Spoiler* for stratum 3, the FOE that blocks the way can be lured out using either the Lure Bell or the skill ‘Racket’. Then you simply walk behind the FOE as it comes out. Then, to escape, either use a wire or there’s a hidden passage right next to where the FOE originally stood/stands (it returns to its location after you lure it out).

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