|genre||turn based RPG|
|past years||2020: #8, 2019: #5, 2018: #2|
For a quite time Square gave us trailers and early trailer for a project codenamed Octopath Traveler, without a decision on the final name. And each time it looked sweeter and sweeter. Finally they decided to take the codename as final name and released a great turn based RPG, with many things taken from the experiences in the past and what worked so great in these games, but also with lessons learned and modernized things. This both for the gameplay mechanics and the graphic.
I think the most discussion was about the artstyle and graphics of these games. Detractors said it is old graphics. But don't be fooled: Although pixel-art is used as texture, it still is a modern 3D-engine with a lot of effects in lighting, particles, water, god-rays and many other stuff, that was simply impossible on past hardware and software. And the designers at Square combined it into something so unique, so awesome, the art-style alone makes Octopath Traveler an unforgettable game.
But that isn't it alone. The fighting system is very advanced too. With the break system and weaknesses it makes fights pretty tactical and you have to make good use of it for many bosses in the game. The game also incorporated modified elements of the Bravely Default series, with the ability to boost your attack if you had saved up the points for multiple rounds. Combined you could use it to hit foes hard after you had broken their defenses, before they could regain their stance.
Outside of battle you had many interactions with the big amount of NPCs, including character specific actions. As the name suggests you have eight different main characters with different stories that progress, as they travel together through Orsterra. And it would be an error not to mention the soundtrack, this soundtrack is awesome and I often listen to it while working.
This game is a unique and awesome experience and I am sure it will be remembered as one of the defining games of the Switch. I would really like to see remakes of the early Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest games in this style. Please Square, hear me out, this is a great idea. Anyways, I think everyone with a Switch and a love for RPGs should give this game a try. This game is also released on PC and Stadia.