“Saga Emerald Beyond” offers a play experience that is “the exact opposite” of recent RPGs – The sense of fulfillment you get from the extremely honed combat and story is unique[Review]

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“Saga Emerald Beyond” offers a play experience that is “the exact opposite” of recent RPGs – The sense of fulfillment you get from the extremely honed combat and story is unique[Review]
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The “Saga” series made a spectacular debut as the first RPG on the Game Boy, and has steadily progressed with the times, continuing to be loved for a long time from Heisei to Reiwa.

Its momentum has not slowed down in recent years, and in 2016, a completely new series, “Saga Scarlet Grace,” was released, and in recent years, remasters of previous games with many new elements have been well received. Masu.

And on April 25th, the completely new game “Saga Emerald Beyond”, which will be the first in 8 years since “Saga Scarlet Grace”, will be released for Nintendo Switch/PS5/PS4/Steam/iOS/Android.

The “Saga” series can be roughly categorized as a “turn-based command RPG.” However, it is very different from other works in the same category, and has evolved in its own way. Saga Emerald Beyond, which is at the forefront of this series, is also a very unique work.

A trial version of this work has been distributed prior to its release, and many people are likely to have gotten a glimpse of its appeal. However, in the trial version, you can only play “Mido Tsunanori Arc” (PS5/PS4), “Ameya Arc” (Switch), and “Diva Number 5 Arc” (Steam), and the remaining two main characters ” It was not possible to try out the “Siugnus Edition” and “Borny & Formina Edition.”

While you can enjoy the unique battle system, it is difficult to understand how the main characters interact with their respective worlds unless you play the final version. Therefore, in this article, we will provide a glimpse of the group drama and a review of the retail version of “Saga Emerald Beyond” through the “Siugunas Arc” that appears in the retail version.

■ Battles in “Saga Emerald Beyond” are highly strategic and easy to control.
The game system of “Saga Emerald Beyond”, apart from the depth that you get when you play for a long time, you can get a taste of the basics in the trial version that has already been distributed. We also introduced those distinctive elements in the preview article the other day.

Therefore, I will not go into a detailed explanation of the game system this time, but as mentioned earlier, even though this work is an RPG, it is different from the general style in some ways. In a normal RPG, many people imagine that even though the party is called a party, each member acts individually during battle, such as healing or applying buffs to allies.

However, in the case of this game, the basis of strategy is “cooperation” between teammates, and there are many scenes where you have to think twice about how to combine a variety of techniques and techniques. Each technique has a different effect, such as power, counter, substitution, cancellation, invalidation of guard, and delay in the order of actions, and it is important to know when to use it, which technique to use, and who to use it on. ” is very important.

However, the effects of techniques can be checked one by one, and the success or failure of cooperation can be visually confirmed on the “timeline” that shows the order of actions, so although there are many elements involved, it is not complicated. “Saga Emerald Beyond” offers battles that are easy to understand yet strategic.

■Each battle is “heavy”, but overall it is made to be less burdensome.
Due to the strategic and deep nature of the battles, the battles in Saga Emerald Beyond take longer than typical RPGs.

In other games, it’s a long battle when you’re fighting a boss, but most of the small battles along the way can be resolved within 2-3 turns.

However, in the case of this game, the turns tend to take longer, even for things other than bosses, and battles involve always having to be conscious of strategy.

Some users may be worried, saying, “It’s good to be highly strategic, but it’s tiring not being able to let your guard down even when dealing with small fry.” It’s true that in modern RPGs, there are often balance adjustments that emphasize the exhilaration of fighting small fry in a short amount of time. If you are used to such games, you will find the battles in this game to be a little heavy, where you have to plan your strategy every time and can’t let your guard down.

However, when looking at the game as a whole, the battle elements in SaGa Emerald Beyond are not overly heavy.

In the case of a typical RPG, small fry battles are less burdensome, while boss battles are more burdensome.

The boss battles in this game are even more difficult, but the other battles are often fought well, and the battles in general are always worth watching.

However, this is a story focused on a single game. In a typical RPG, you will have to fight many small battles to reach the boss. Although the burden for each battle is small, there are many to handle, so when you look at it as a whole, fighting small fry can be said to be a reasonable burden.

Another major feature is that both the main story and side quests always progress in stages. The number of times you fight in the middle of this is fixed, and it has nothing to do with the situations that are common in RPGs, such as “fighting small fry endlessly until you reach the boss.”

The battles in this game are certainly “heavy,” but I feel like the number of battles itself has been adjusted to be small, so overall I don’t get the impression that it’s a heavy burden.

If a typical RPG is like, “Each battle is light, but you don’t know how many times you’ll have to fight before you get to the boss,” this game has “no random encounters, and you’ll put your full effort into each battle.” You could say it’s a game system.

Even though it is a turn-based RPG, the way it is and the tempo of play are completely different, and this point alone should give you an idea of ​​the unique side of this work.

■The journey of “Diva Number 5” in search of “heart”
Now, from here on, I’ll summarize the overall feel of the game, including the story. In this work, five groups of six main characters travel through 17 worlds, each with their own reasons and goals. I won’t reveal the details or the development of the second half, as they would be spoilers, but the main characters sometimes meet each other along the way, and it’s an eye-opening group drama.

“Diva Number 5”, which was introduced in a previous preview, depicts the journey of a mecha, a diva whose ability to sing is suppressed, who transfers her consciousness to another body and questions her own “heart.” As the journey begins, doors to various “worlds” will open, and the player can freely choose where to go.

At this time, the author first chose a world called “Delta Base”, which is controlled by three clans. She comes from a different world and is questioned harshly, but Diva Girlfriend Number 5, who is still feeling the loss, accepts it, saying, “If you can get rid of it, I’ll be happy.”

Fortunately, the decision was made to put her in a supervisory role, and she helped each tribe with their troubles, and her search for the “heart” yielded some results. In this playthrough, she was especially deeply involved with the Yellow Clan, and I remember clearly that she had a somewhat bitter ending.

After that, she traveled around the world as Diva No. 5. For example, in line with Dolores’ wish for the resurrection of the Dark Lord, Diva Girlfriend Number 5 somehow wanders into that world from a tombstone.

This game has a variety of developments depending on the world you visit, such as a former diva being worshiped by the king of darkness, but this time I tried changing the main character to Siugnus.

■Changes in the development that can be seen through “Siugnus Arc”
The “Siugnus Arc” begins with him, the king of darkness who rules that world, being attacked by a sudden visitor and waking up in “Brighthome,” a world where dead heroes throw themselves into battle.

One of the player characters is the King of Darkness, who is attacked right after the beginning, and wakes up in a different world…so the game is full of intense developments from the beginning. The story is about a diva who loses her position as a girlfriend and leaves for a different world, and the story of this work basically develops quickly and things progress quickly.

What is also interesting is that the “How Diva Number 5 came out of the tombstone” that I mentioned earlier is connected to the story of Siugnas. Chronologically, Siugnus is attacked first, and Dolores, who mourns and thinks that he has been killed, prays for her master’s resurrection, and for some reason Diva His Number 5 appears from his gravestone. It can be inferred that Dolores is happy that the King of Darkness has been resurrected…

Not only are there many worlds, but it’s not uncommon for each protagonist’s world to be visited by another protagonist and interact with them in strange ways like this. This interplay is also the real thrill of Saga Emerald Beyond, which has five main characters of six characters.

In any case, first of all, Siugnus takes on the fight against “Chaos” in “Bright Home”. He leads his friends, such as “philosophers”, “warriors”, “hitokiri”, and “kings”, into numerous battles.

I won’t go into details about the story of “Bright Home” because spoilers are inevitable, but together with these friends, a journey across the world has begun.

There, just like in Diva Number 5, you will be given multiple choices as to which world to go to. However, the appearance was slightly different, showing each world where each of their friends, such as “philosophers” and “warriors”, lived. In other words, the “Siugnus Arc” also has the aspect of tracing the past of the friends.

When I tried to select the world where the “Philosopher” was, it turned out to be the “Delta Base”, which was the first place I visited when playing Diva No. 5 and had three clans.

■If the main character changes, the encounters will also change! ?
The response of the three clans will not change even when dealing with Siugnus, and they will be cautious and watchful. However, unlike Diva Number 5, who was half swept away, he insists that he is in the same position as him, saying, “There is someone somewhere who should be my vassal, so let me find him.”

In this way, even the same situation changes depending on the main character, so you can enjoy the world with a fresh feeling even if you have experienced it more than once. In fact, it makes me want to know what kind of changes occur between the main characters.

In addition, the past and relationships of the accompanying members — the “philosophers” in “Delta Base” — come to light in the “Siugnas Arc,” making it doubly interesting.

By the way, this time in “Delta Base”, I chose a path that is deeply related to the Green Clan. As a result, the “philosopher” remembers his harsh past, and the deeds of the Midori clan chief are also discovered. It’s a pretty heavy past, so I’d like you to play the product version and experience what happened.

In addition to this, in the world where Siugnus reigned as the King of Darkness, he was reunited with the “Tower of Greed” who was acting as his subordinate (this was the first meeting in the game), etc. I was able to enjoy a development that I had never seen before. There are such differences between the main characters, and being able to enjoy them is a unique charm of this work.

■The real pleasure of “Saga Emerald Beyond” is the encounters between the main characters!
He travels to another world, where he meets one of the main characters, Tsunanori Mido. Not only can you go into the world of each main character, but there are also developments in which the main characters encounter and interact with each other.

It is also a world where one of his friends was Hitokiri, but he was forced to make two choices and chose to work with Mido. Perhaps for that reason, he never directly touches on Hitokiri’s past, and spends his time fighting to protect the world by teaming up with Mido.

There are many opportunities to gather information here, and Siugnus uses his charm-like abilities to uncover many stories. His style is unique to him, but sometimes you can’t help but imagine what he would do if he were a different protagonist. This kind of stimulation leads to a desire to play a different protagonist, albeit in a small way.

Also, after successfully saving the world, Mido will join your party depending on your choice. Up until now, he has only been a companion in the process (and guest participation in boss battles), but from now on he will play an active role as one of your party members. The real thrill of group dramas is the development in which the main characters from different routes become friends.

By the way, perhaps thanks to Siugnus’ charm, not only Mido but also the young lady “Waka Naomi” joined the group. There are differences in the friends that join depending on the protagonist, and you can enjoy the fun of forming a party for each protagonist.

Siugnas’ journey through the past of his friends will continue, but one of the characteristics of “Saga Emerald Beyond” is that each protagonist can enjoy different experiences and developments.

Combat, where enemies and allies exchange attacks, obstruction, and techniques, is rich in strategy as you discern the flow. The battle and defense is visually expressed in the “timeline”, and everything from the construction of “coordination” to the battle situation can be clearly seen at a glance.

As a result, each battle has its own weight, but the overall number of battles is limited, and thanks to the well-balanced structure, I didn’t feel an excessive burden. Although there were some tough boss battles that I had to restart many times, it’s easy to re-fight, so it’s nice to see that they’re designed to reduce stress.

Each world is small in the sense of a field, and the sense of vast adventure like in a typical RPG may be lacking. However, there is no need to spend time on the road, and the tempo of the story’s progression and the waiting battles mesh well, so you can say that there is almost no sluggish time that is common in RPGs.

When the main character changes, it affects each world, and there are many developments that can only be seen in that route. In addition, there are often choices that can drastically change the course of the game, so you may want to change the protagonist or play around with the same protagonist, making the game even more exciting.

Modern RPGs have many detours, but the main story is a straight path, and even if there are branching endings, the story only splits at the end. The world is vast and rewarding to explore, but most games can be fully enjoyed in just one playthrough.

Compared to such general works, “Saga Emerald Beyond” is almost the complete opposite, a work with a distinct individuality. Therefore, if you are expecting the fun and play tempo of a standard RPG, you may be disappointed.

However, this is just one of the things we have reached as a result of evolving the fun of RPGs in a unique way and making bold choices. I think it’s more accurate to think of the overwhelming appeal and lacking parts of this work as differences in stance, rather than dividing them into strengths and weaknesses.

After playing through this game, I was filled with a sense of fulfillment that felt like “I played SaGa Emerald Beyond” rather than feeling like I had just played an RPG. It’s easy to play multiple times, so I’m looking forward to continuing to enjoy the journey with the new protagonist.

“Saga Emerald Beyond” official website

“Saga Emerald Beyond” offers a play experience that is “the exact opposite” of recent RPGs – The sense of fulfillment you get from the extremely honed combat and story is unique[Review]

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