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Friday, December 29, 2023

Etrian Mystery Dungeon

Another crossover for the Etrian series, this time with Mystery Dungeon's roguelike gameplay, though it may not be the best fit for a crossover - roguelikes are generally built as single-character romps, so having a full party accompanying you throughout feels a touch unwieldy.  Particularly as enemies will almost always target your weakest characters by preference (like your squishy mages and healers) and will power up on scoring a successful kill, proving a much greater threat to the rest of your party.  Your fighters and mages will generally attack of their own accord unless you choose to take all their turns manually, though that does significantly slow down the action, and of course having multiple characters around makes it much easier to trigger traps as you move about (though other characters will at least avoid them automatically once they're uncovered).  You do at least have the ability to swap between party members and assign skills to hotkeys with combinations of buttons, though it takes some adapting.  The formula does work fairly well once you adapt to it, though in all honestly I'd rather just play an Etrian or a proper roguelike instead of a strange hybrid of the two.  A sentiment seemingly echoed by many who played it, as it didn't sell well enough for Etrian Mystery Dungeon 2 to be brought outside of Japan.

Developer: Spike Chunsoft
Publisher: Atlus
Released: 2015
Platforms: Nintendo 3DS