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Friday, October 14, 2016

On setting a new course for the Atelier franchise; Yoshito Okamura

Interview by Matt S.

Atelier Firis: The Alchemist of the Mysterious Journey is going to be a very different game to the Atelier games that you’ve played in the past. At a rate of almost one game per year over the series’ 19-year history, fans have grown accustomed to what to expect from a new Atelier game, but this one is determined to throw some curveballs in there.

Related reading: Hands-on with all of Koei Tecmo's upcoming games, from TGS 2016.

Most notable of all is that the game has shifted to a much more open world-style environment. In previous Atelier games, players would move their characters around a map that looked like a board game board. On each “square” would be a small environment where the characters could fight enemies and collect resources before heading back in town to then use alchemy on the resources to make finished goods, which would then complete many of the game’s quests.

With Firis, however, you’ll have a great deal more exploring to do. The alchemy remains, but the 'board game'-like exploration is gone, replaced with large environments that Firis and her friends explore 'on foot.' The impression is more akin to a Tales or Dragon Quest game, though less linear in the path that you need to take. Were it not for the ridiculously cute girls that could only ever be from an Atelier game, distinctive (and charming) enemy designs that are unique to Atelier, and alchemy itself, you could be forgiven for thinking that this is an entirely new franchise for Gust.

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On setting a new course for the Atelier franchise; Yoshito Okamura
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