The rest of the game is split down one line or the other. The dungeons are completely action-based. These side-scrolling catacombs are filled with monsters that you can choose freely to engage or avoid, and lots of hidden platforms with secret treasures to discover. If there's a complaint to be made, particularly as this is a portable game and distraction is a very real problem, they can get almost too long and confusing to want to deal with. There's an auto-mapping feature, fortunately, which smoothes this over.
On the other hand, setting up your characters for battle and managing your party's abilities is RPG number crunching at its finest and most intense. You're able to create weapons from thin air to augment those you uncover in dungeons, and your characters have dozens of abilities to unlock and set up. On top of that, you'll recruit a steady stream of warriors - you can't hang on to favorites; you have to get them battle-ready and then send them to your lord, the god Odin, as they're needed for battle. Between chapters you get reports on their progress, and Odin sends down gifts if you send him talented recruits. The game's morbid story results in pure gameplay addiction when those special items rain from the heavens.