While PAX East was in full swing, I was invited to try out a brand-new game from Natsume Atari, famed Suikoden producer Yoshitaka Murayama, and 505 Games called Eiyuden Chronical: Rising. This action RPG is a Kickstarter success story and properly sets up the next game within the franchise: Eiyuden Chronical: Hundred Heroes, yet both titles are completely different in gameplay. Eiyuden Chronical: Rising sets the stage with beautiful graphics reminiscent of old-school RPGs, and the gameplay feels eerily similar as well.
The demo for Rising threw me into the shoes of the spunky teenager CJ who runs into an anthropomorphic alligator who is under attack by bandits. I get my first taste of combat, jumping around, slashing, and performing basic combos. The controls felt nice and smooth, but it still felt a bit aged. Granted, I am sure they will become more complex the further I get into the game.
I then walked into a town where I got to venture through the beautifully designed streets, viewing a destroyed clock that happened to be a focal point for the story. I was then introduced to the mayor who is also a teenage girl who is extorting adventurers who wish to go dungeon delving, and this is what kicks off the rest of the demo. I was tasked with collecting some materials and dispatching enemies so that I can progress on my adventure.
I was led to a forest area and witness an interesting concept within the level design. You’ll go in, complete your quest, and then turn that quest in. Eventually, you’ll go back in and get a bit further into the forest. Every quest sent me deeper and deeper into the forest, and by the time I got to the end of the questline, I met the boss; a giant and evil-looking tree.
This demonic tree had red telepathed attacks that weren’t too difficult to dodge, but they made up in damage. As you start knocking its health down, things began to get a bit more hectic. The tree’s tactics changed up a bit, adding more or speeding up the frequency of attacks. It had another weapon revolving the utility of a weird looking tongue which ended me and my time with the demo.
This side-scrolling adventure was fun and unique while retaining something familiar and classic. Despite the nostalgia trip, it did feel a bit dry for a demo and didn’t seem to show off enough. I saw a bit of the other aspects in trailers and screenshots that involved character switching, additional moves, and more intricate systems. Despite that, I got just a small taste of the basic concepts that stand as the foundation as well as the pacing of the game. This is going to be a somewhat slow burn, but it is a fun title that feels more like it is about the journey more than the destination.
I didn’t get to experience how the story plans to evolve with a gameplay loop that is focused on rebuilding the area around you. Will it go further into different towns and cities? How extensive will the system be? These are questions that will be answered when the full game releases May 10th for most consoles and PC.
If you are interested, please check out the gallery for additional screenshots and stay tuned to Seasoned Gaming for more information.