Odin Sphere: Leifthrasir
Platforms: PS4, PSVita
Disclaimer: The code for this PS Vita game was obtained for free, from a source that had obtained it for free from the developer.
Odin Sphere was a game from acclaimed developer Vanillaware that came out in 2007 which was late into the PS2's life cycle. It was critically well received but due to its late release and its JRPG centric perception is has remained a cult classic. Now, however, the side scrolling beat 'em up with RPG elements is back on PS3, PS4 and PSVITA and its better than its ever been.
Odin Sphere: Leifthrasir takes you through a wonderful story full of intrigue, betrayal and character development from the perspective of each young characters shown throughout the story. This is a great way to build the different characters personalities with different sides of each of the stories on show, for example. A characters actions from perspective may seem cold and evil but then from another its tragic and heroic. This really is for me the biggest highlight of the game which is why im trying very hard not to mention characters or give away any details. Lets just leave it at, its fantastic.
The next area the game really excels at is presentation. Vanillaware's games have always had a beautiful 2D art style with perfect and satisfying animations (See Muramasa and Dragons Crown titles) and Odin sphere maintains this track record. The game also now runs are rock solid 60 FPS which keeps the gameplay tight and gives you 100% control of your actions. If you screw up its your fault but if you nail a ridiculous combo, that's all you buddy! The sound design is also top notch. A nice soundtrack that has aged extremely well with full voice acting that really gives the characters even more development, which as I mentioned earlier, is really the theme of this games greatness.
So the last area of discussion is gameplay. You wont be shocked to hear the game excels here as well! The game initially gives you the impression of a simple hack and slash sidescroller but as the game develops it becomes a lot more deep and complex. There are lots of passive and active skills for each character, lots of recipes and food to unlock to boost there EXP and performance and a very robust potion mixing mechanic that becomes essential early on. The game splits its maps into combat encounters, rest areas and story cut scenes which really lends to a pick up and play style of play that particularly excels on PS VITA which is for sure the platform I would recommend.
So overall, I can't say too much more without ruining Odin Sphere: Leifthrasir's secrets and nuances but what I can stress is that this is a AAA title that deserves your attention, especially on PS Vita. If I have one complaint its that the game doesn't do an amazing job of teaching you its more complex mechanics but its a very minor issue.
Verdict. Odin Sphere:Leifthrasir is an engaging and fun title that will suck you in and not let you go until you have seen every aspect of its fantastic story. It plays great, looks great, sounds great and is a must own on PS Vita this year.