By: Uma Smith
Thanks to NIS America, we get to see even more titles making their way onto the PlayStation Vita. If you are hungry for some dungeon crawling gameplay, then its newest title, Operation Abyss: New Tokyo Legacy, is here to satiate your taste buds. As this Vita game attempts to bring in some deep content coupled with its anime appearance, how well will it gain its audience?
Operation Abyss: New Tokyo Legacy is essentially a menu-driven game, so one would expect the controls to be very straightforward. However, the fact that even the most basic actions require six or more button presses says otherwise. Furthermore, the option choices are not clear enough to decipher their purpose or function. And the lack of tutorials for such a menu system can really put a damper on the gameplay experience.
Once you figure out the battle mechanics, you can pretty much function throughout, but it could’ve certainly been user friendly.
Visually, New Tokyo Legacy is made up of anime-style artwork and fully 3D backgrounds. It may look a bit out of place to have static images of 2D models against such backdrops, but the overall presentation is effective in achieving the appropriate mood.
Tack on the in-game music and you get yourself a very fitting experience. Even though the audio effects from the battles are solid, the voice acting itself is a bit underwhelming. While most of the cast does a pretty good job, there are some that give a very corny and odd impression.
Taking place in modern day Tokyo, the story takes you to the Code Physics Agency where you learn about the genetic creations known as Variants as well as a dimensional portal called the Abyss. As part of the Xth Squad special unit, you will have to journey into these portals to combat the waiting monsters.
Right off the bat, you have a team of six characters that you will get to choose on various attributes including name, gender and attributes. As you move on, Operation Abyss gets you shifting back and forth between the city, where the game plays out entirely in menu navigation, and the dungeon crawling, which you play via first-person perspective.
As you traverse the dungeons, the game keeps track of the squares that your characters travel through within the map. This is also where you will occasionally come across random enemies, which forces you into turn-based battles, as well as treasures lying around.
Throughout the game, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to improve on your characters’ stats. When it comes to leveling up and switching rosters, players pretty much have autonomy. Further to that, there are a number of puzzles littered throughout Operation Abyss: New Tokyo Legacy. Sometimes, it does take luck to find a solution to them, which can be annoying to some players.
Where this becomes quite the challenge is during the boss battles since they are supported by allies that work hand-in-hand with their own abilities. As such, these parts of the game can require a lot of concentration and perseverance.
New Tokyo Legacy can be completed in a matter of approximately 50 hours. This is reflective of how much content there is in getting players to come back to revisit — that is if this sort of genre is their cup of tea. While it’s not the Vita title that will blow your mind away, its RPG system is deep enough for players to get engaged to the experience that it has to offer.
Operation Abyss: New Tokyo Legacy is appropriate for those who are really into the dungeon crawling genre coupled with anime goodness. There are plenty of challenges and some great mechanics that can keep you busy and interested depending on your taste towards this dungeon-RPG genre.