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The Alchemist of the Mysterious Book DX — Is it worth it?

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Following in the footsteps of almost every old game in the series, Atelier Sophie, in addition to his two brothers in the Mysterious trilogy, is getting a special version with some changes and extra content. It’s not exactly the most popular game of the bunch, so I thought I’d break down all the new additions, as well as how the game has held up over the past few years. It is worth mentioning that Steam is removing the previous version of the game and if you already have it, you will still have to buy Atelier Sophie DX.

Atelier Sophie DX It begins with the game’s protagonist, Sophie, who attempts to make rudimentary medicine through alchemy. After writing the recipe in a book, start talking to her. The basic gist of the narrative is that Sophie has to complete tasks to retrieve the memories of the book, while growing up as an alchemist along the way. Since this is a Japanese game, the book eventually turns into a girl in lingerie. It makes a lot of sense. It’s about a Workshop game, so there is a lot of conversation between rather dull and boring characters. Your mileage will vary.

Of the three games in the Mysterious trilogy, I would say Atelier Sophie DX bear the worst. It has the most rudimentary combat and alchemy mechanics of the three. Although, anyway, it is not that far. The main unique feature regarding alchemy is that certain traits are added by placing and arranging components on a grid. If the components end up completing a line, the end product changes. The space is narrower here and is not explained as well as in later games, but it is fine. The combat, while basic, also works quite well. They are traditional JRPG stuff.

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Look away, I’m horrible!

Atelier Sophie DX it is visually very dated compared to its siblings. The geometry of the areas is hideously simple, the textures are low resolution and smooth, and the areas themselves are typically small. It makes me think that it started to develop as a PSP game. It just doesn’t look that good. However, the character models do better, as their colorful anime style still looks decent. Still, if you come from one of the Ryza games, going back to Sophie it’s going to be a challenge.

There are some new things in Atelier Sophie DX, most of which will probably not be worth a second purchase. Sophie can run now, which is a function that was added with Firis. Unfortunately, you can’t move the camera away, which means that she will be very close to Sophie at all times. Since it spins automatically as she moves, the game is almost nauseating to play. This version also adds a photo mode, in addition to the ability to speed up the battle by up to two times.

The biggest novelty in the game itself is a new side story that centers on Sophie finding an old dress that her grandmother used to wear. Mostly it seems to exist to put her in a skimpy outfit (not surprising). Sophie also has access to different varieties of cauldrons that add various alchemy effects. Finally, most of the base game downloadable content is included, such as background music packs, costumes, a higher difficulty, a new gathering area, and an epilogue. But big fans probably already have most of those things. As such, it is a bit difficult to recommend Atelier Sophie DX for owners of the original or fans reviewing older entries. It’s a solid game, but the other two will probably be more fun.

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