Level up here

Second vote is for EO players.

I have played but not beaten any EO.
2
22%
I have played and beaten at least one EO.
3
33%
I have played and beaten every EO, I am the FOE!
0
No votes
I have never played EO, because I don't like dungeon crawlers.
0
No votes
I have never played EO, because map making is boring.
0
No votes
I have never played EO, because it sounds too hard for me.
0
No votes
I have never played EO, because it's not on any of my systems.
1
11%
When I play 3DS EO, I play on Picnic/Standard/Basic.
1
11%
When I play 3DS EO, I play on Expert/Advanced.
2
22%
 
Total votes : 9
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Exhuminator
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Etrian Odyssey: Share your opinions, memories, and scars.

by Exhuminator Sat Nov 11, 2017 8:17 pm

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I was wondering what the RB community thinks of Etrian Odyssey. The first entry, Etrian Odyssey, released January 18, 2007. So at least one entry in this series falls under retro gaming status.* But there's been many EO releases since then. To jog memories:

(Dates reflect Japanese release.)
2007 - Etrian Odyssey (DS)
2008 - Etrian Odyssey II: Heroes of Lagaard (DS)
2010 - Etrian Odyssey III: The Drowned City (DS)
2012 - Etrian Odyssey IV: Legends of the Titan (3DS)
2013 - Etrian Odyssey Untold: The Millennium Girl (3DS)
2014 - Etrian Odyssey 2 Untold: The Fafnir Knight (3DS)
2015 - Etrian Mystery Dungeon (3DS)
2016 - Etrian Odyssey V: Beyond the Myth (3DS)
2017 - Etrian Mystery Dungeon 2 (3DS)
2018(?) - Etrian Odyssey VI (3DS) (source)

What are your experiences with the Etrian Odyssey series? Do you have any favorite entries? What did you think when modern EO started offering easier difficulty levels? Do you have any interesting memories from playing EO? Do you deeply enjoy cartography? If you are a fan of EO, did you try the Mystery Dungeon version? And howabout the Persona Q games? (Yes PQ2 is in the works.) Do you think Atlus produces EO too fast and too often, or is there no such thing as too much EO? What changes would you make to the EO formula if you could?

I'll chime in with my own responses later.

*If you count something 10+ years as "retro".
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Re: Etrian Odyssey: Share your opinions, memories, and scars

by MrPopo Sun Nov 12, 2017 1:35 am

I don't remember how I heard about the first EO, but it sounded interesting and the idea of making your own map was the kicker. I was immediately trust into dying to some butterflies that snuck up on me in a field of flowers. I was hooked. I've beaten the five main line games, done the post game for the first two, and am currently working on both Persona Q and Untold (though Persona Q is back at home, so it's not active yet). I'm personally a big fan of EO5 getting rid of the sea travel and overworld stuff of 3 & 4. The sea travel wasn't too bad, but it came at the expense of a dungeon floor per stratum, which is not a trade I would want to make. And the overworld of 4 really changed the overall feel of the exploration. That said, I did like 4's version of the dual class system the best. It kept your choice of initial class important, as your secondary class could only level up skills to have the effectiveness of a primary class. But you still got to play the mix and match game to find something that resonated with you, whereas 5's system is mostly a way to double the number of classes without increasing the art budget or having to add in a bunch of extra lower skills.

I remember looking up a guide for the postgame boss of EO1. If you fought him during the day he followed an exact script, and you could get through taking almost no damage thanks to your Protector. If you fought him during the evening he would act randomly, and you were basically guaranteed to be screwed even with the hilariously OP Immunize of that game. I recall EO2's postgame boss being easier, though I think I cheesed it with some sort of bullshit party (maybe it was the 5x Hexer Revenge party). And 2 still has my favorite combination of dungeon and battle theme for the sixth stratum.
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Re: Etrian Odyssey: Share your opinions, memories, and scars

by Exhuminator Sun Nov 12, 2017 3:02 am

MrPopo wrote:I cheesed it with some sort of bullshit party (maybe it was the 5x Hexer Revenge party).

That's the thing man... I think a lot of folks are using online resources to determine optimal party configurations. Now I'm not saying you did, but the kind of party builds people go on about, just don't seem all that intuitive to me. I think there's a lot of online discussion concerning this series every time a new release hits, and folks share tips and party concepts. I assume that. I don't know where they talk about these things. GameFAQs perhaps?

To answer my own questions:

What are your experiences with the Etrian Odyssey series?

I first tried EO on DS back in 2010, the original game. I thought it was OK. When Untold 1 came out, I bought in on 3DS. I proceeded to beat it on Expert. I had no idea what I was doing, but I was too stubborn to consult guides or lower the difficulty. Eventually I beat the game (took me over a hundred hours... I really had no idea what I was doing). I had some amazing times with Untold, and I had some soul crushing times too. I remember being stuck on one particular boss for multiple nights in a row... that was terrible. I did not however, clear the post-game sixth stratum. I just didn't have it in me to bother after the harrowing core game. Also because I played the story mode, I played through an additional stratum anyway that didn't exist in the original game. So that sixth stratum was more like a seventh stratum by that point. I have messed with Untold 2 a little bit, but not officially started it yet.

Do you have any favorite entries?

At this point, no. But I think EO3 and EO4 look interesting. I do own every USA 3DS EO released, including EMD and PQ. I also have EO3 on DS, because it wasn't remade for 3DS, unfortunately. (I don't know why.)

What did you think when modern EO started offering easier difficulty levels?

There's no denying that once Atlus allowed folks to lower the difficulty level, the series started selling a lot more. Not everyone wants to deal with the true EO challenge! I like the idea of uncompromising gameplay... so I'd rather the difficulty selections have never been an option. Yeah I'm an elitist douche like that. Ultimately though, it does let more casual players into the door, so they can have fun too.

Do you have any interesting memories from playing EO?

The best memories are when I wasn't getting trashed, and rather was just wandering the stratums exploring. EO can be very relaxing believe it or not, when you're listening to the more somber tracks (this series has stupendous OSTs), and exploring more serene stratums. However most of my memories of Untold 1 are of horribly difficulty FOEs and bosses I had no idea how to handle. Honestly I think I have a little PTSD. :lol: However the feeling of elation I got from beating some of those bosses was like nothing else in gaming. Well, except for bits of Demon's Souls.

Do you deeply enjoy cartography?

Honestly, no. If I could enable full auto-mapping, and just explore without stopping to draw the map, I'd like that better. I know some later EOs allow partial auto-mapping, but you still have to place doors, chests, and other icons. I'd like to have a completely hands off auto-map mode available. Now, that's just me. I do understand some folks play EO primarily for the cartography. And that's cool too. I just don't like the idea of tracing maps that already exist. If the floors were randomly generated (at the start of the game, but didn't change throughout), I'd feel like mapping them was more personally meaningful.

If you are a fan of EO, did you try the Mystery Dungeon version?

Haven't tried it yet, but I bought it. I hope the sequel releases here too. I enjoy roguelikes, and I enjoy EO. What could go wrong? :wink:

And howabout the Persona Q games? (Yes PQ2 is in the works.)

Well, I bought PQ. I haven't played it yet, because I'm only familiar with the P3 characters at this point. I'd like to know the P4 characters as well, since they work with the P3 characters in the game. Eventually I'll play it. I just hope P4 is a lot better than P3 was...

Do you think Atlus produces EO too fast and too often, or is there no such thing as too much EO?

I think Atlus really, really got their money's worth out of rehashing that EO4 engine throughout the life of the 3DS. Considering Atlus has hinted that EO6 will be the final entry in the series, I guess it's okay they've made so many on the 3DS. I don't know how Atlus could bring this series to the Switch, and still keep the same style of gameplay. You'd have to manually switch screens between exploring and map making, and it just wouldn't have the same flow.

What changes would you make to the EO formula if you could?

Full auto-map. I'm not a big fan of the chibi/loli character designs, I'd rather characters be proportioned more realistically. Get rid of difficulty selection. A little less grindy, by that I mean lower encounter rate but higher EXP reward.

---

Hopefully MrPopo and myself aren't the only members with experience in this series. :P
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Re: Etrian Odyssey: Share your opinions, memories, and scars

by alienjesus Sun Nov 12, 2017 6:26 am

I've only played one entry in the series, which was Etrian Odyssey IV. I hear it's one of the easier ones. I played on the standard difficulty. It was plenty hard enough for me - dungeon crawlers like this tend to descend into tedium for me if they get too hard.

I liked Etrian Odyssey IV. My initial team wasn't working very well together so I reconfigured it somewhat, swapping the assassin type class for the Landsknicht, and my medic for an arcanist, which worked great. I had a team focused on setting up to deal as many hits as possible in one turn using the landsknichts link skills, the dancers various follow up attack skills, the runemasters mass damage spells (and weakness creating abilities). My arcanist would provide healing over time whilst the set up happened, as well as mass status effects, and my tank would block as much damage as possible. The tank class was boring, bur felt essential, I think I would have needed to grind a shitload more to survive without it.

Despite enjoying the game, I'm in no rush to run out and buy more entries in the series. The genre is one that I'm not that into, and playing one or two entries into the dungeon crawling RPG is enough for me every decade or so. Between Etrian 4 and Dungeon Travelers 2, I'm all DRPGed out.
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Re: Etrian Odyssey: Share your opinions, memories, and scars

by MrPopo Sun Nov 12, 2017 11:18 am

Exhuminator wrote:
MrPopo wrote:I cheesed it with some sort of bullshit party (maybe it was the 5x Hexer Revenge party).

That's the thing man... I think a lot of folks are using online resources to determine optimal party configurations. Now I'm not saying you did, but the kind of party builds people go on about, just don't seem all that intuitive to me. I think there's a lot of online discussion concerning this series every time a new release hits, and folks share tips and party concepts. I assume that. I don't know where they talk about these things. GameFAQs perhaps?

GameFAQs is always very active when it comes to party building in EO. One of the things that helps is someone will have translated one of the Japanese wikis that has the skill data, which is the big thing missing from in game. So when you have that available you'll notice that "huh, Revenge does 255% of the Hexer's missing health in damage and has 240% speed", do some quick math, and realize that means a 501 health Hexer at 1 health will do 1275 damage (ignores resistance) and the final boss only has 6000 health. A level 10 Hexer with just level 10 HP and level 10 Revenge will hit those numbers, so it gets even higher with HP boosting items.

Most of the other party combination stuff tends to be looking to maximize cross class synergy (skills that trigger off of other actions and finding ways to do lots of those actions) and are willing to double up on a single class. The latter is probably the biggest mental block to break through, as the large number of classes compared to skill slots really makes you want to stick to a single member of any given class.
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Re: Etrian Odyssey: Share your opinions, memories, and scars

by Exhuminator Mon Nov 13, 2017 12:41 am

MrPopo wrote:One of the things that helps is someone will have translated one of the Japanese wikis that has the skill data, which is the big thing missing from in game. So when you have that available you'll notice that "huh, Revenge does 255% of the Hexer's missing health in damage and has 240% speed", do some quick math, and realize that means a 501 health Hexer at 1 health will do 1275 damage (ignores resistance) and the final boss only has 6000 health. A level 10 Hexer with just level 10 HP and level 10 Revenge will hit those numbers, so it gets even higher with HP boosting items.

I have mixed feelings about stuff like this. EO is about challenge first and foremost. It's the player's grit versus the game's ire. So when the player seeks artificial aid outside the game itself, that leverages an unfair advantage towards the player. In that regard I think the player's success is built on a crutch. But on the other hand, as you showed earlier, EO sometimes does sneaky dirty things under the hood. There's no way the player could know about the hidden mathematical shenanigans without seeing the spreadsheets. That can work as guidance or exploitation, depending on the player.
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Re: Etrian Odyssey: Share your opinions, memories, and scars

by MrPopo Mon Nov 13, 2017 1:34 am

Etrian Odyssey isn't as bad as early games like Wizardry, where you didn't even know if new equipment was good or not (take a look at a weapons list sometime and you'll see everything is D&D style of XdY+N) because they didn't list anything in game. With armor you could figure it out by the reduction in AC, but you wouldn't know about the side benefits.

With EO, you do have a general idea, but you won't know specifics, such as that this bind skill has a much higher rate than that bind skill on this other class, or that the three elements have different action speeds that explains why your caster is acting at vastly different times, or that putting a final point in this skill over here suddenly trashes your action speed in exchange for the major damage boost. I see looking at the raw data as a way of focusing on the tactics and party building that is so rich in the game, and not getting difficulty just because you lack knowledge and thus make poor choices.
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Re: Etrian Odyssey: Share your opinions, memories, and scars

by pierrot Mon Nov 13, 2017 1:41 am

MrPopo wrote:I see looking at the raw data as a way of focusing on the tactics and party building that is so rich in the game, and not getting difficulty just because you lack knowledge and thus make poor choices.

In certain circles it would be called meta gaming, though.
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Re: Etrian Odyssey: Share your opinions, memories, and scars

by MrPopo Tue Apr 10, 2018 1:27 pm

http://www.rpgfan.com/news/2018/7488.html

Etrian Odyssey X, which has 18 returning classes and one new class, with subclassing and the Force Burst system. I keep throwing money at the screen but it's not announced for localization yet.
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Re: Etrian Odyssey: Share your opinions, memories, and scars

by Sarge Tue Apr 10, 2018 2:16 pm

I have played a bit of a lot of them, but haven't beaten any. For the record, the ones I've played were EO 1/2/3/4/Untold. I have the most time into EO4. I think the ones I actually own are EO3/4/Untold.

Not to be the bearer of bad news, but I have my doubts that EO X is going to get localized. But who knows? The 3DS just seems to keep soldiering on.
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