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Lost Odyssey - EXCLUSIVE hands-on

Further instigating the dissension amongst Uhra's people is the recent Magic-Industrial Revolution, which saw the innovation of Magic Energy (technology) beget advancements such as a monorail and swift taxis. Just like modern technology, breakdowns can cause more trouble than they're worth, and a problem at the Great Staff, a mysterious structure built by Uhra's most powerful magician, requires looking into by Kaim and his growing party.

Kaim picks up a few stragglers before setting out to the Staff: female Immortal Seth, a former pirate, and Jenson, a man whose passion for booze is bested only by his love for women. Adding to Kaim's party also opens new combat possibilities, arguably the most useful of which is Formation. Characters can be placed into Front or Back lines, with those in Back protected by the Front's Guard Condition: the sum of all Front characters' hit points. So long as the party has GC points remaining, all characters in the Back take less damage. One obvious strategy is to put spell casters in the Back Formation to keep them out of harm's way.



Immortals can't be killed, but they can be KO'd. They will automatically revive after a few turns, but this doesn't mean players should allow Kaim and other Immortals to take all of the heat. As in any turn-based RPG, those characters still left standing will be subjected to all the abuse, so make sure to keep Immortals healthy even though they can always get back up.

Lost Odyssey is breathtaking to behold. From the flagstone streets and magical monorail in Uhra to the snaking mountain paths and sharp, rain-soaked precipices leading to Great Staff and beyond, Hironobu Sakaguchi's newest world feels vibrant and alive. Though the camera can't be rotated while moving, traversing the various paths of Odyssey is mostly simple and elegant, allowing strategic combat and a fascinating narrative to hog the proverbial spotlight.

Come this February, Lost Odyssey will be found. Sakaguchi's latest adventure is almost here, and it looks poised to deliver on the hype.

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