Summoners Battle: Chronicles is lastly getting its world launch this week, and I bought to spend a little bit of time in a preview construct of the sport earlier than launch. Whereas I’ve by no means performed the unique Summoners Battle myself, Chronicles’ setup feels standalone sufficient that you may in all probability bounce in with out feeling misplaced or overwhelmed. And apart from, let’s name a spade a spade. This is perhaps an MMO, but it surely’s nonetheless a gacha recreation at its core, and it’s uncommon that anybody ever performs a gacha recreation for the story.
Proper off the bat, Summoners Battle: Chronicles impressed me with its graphical model and presentation. It appears rather a lot like this 12 months’s Ni no Kuni: Cross Worlds, implementing an cute cartoonish artwork model that makes the world and characters really feel extra welcoming in consequence. It additionally helps that the essential courses you begin out with within the recreation have easy sufficient kits that almost all gamers will be capable to bounce in with out worrying about an in depth onboarding course of.
That stated, Chronicles does endure from one explicit trait it shares with most different cellular MMOs, and the expertise feels cheapened in consequence: a lot of the recreation is simply performed with auto motion and battle on.
Whilst you’ll most actually wish to manually management your character in harder encounters in a while, quite a lot of the early recreation is spent actually simply hitting a button and watching your character and companions wander across the open-world to kill issues and tackle quests. The auto-battle operate does a good sufficient job with common enemies, and I’ll admit that I’m the form of gamer who loves a superb recreation that performs itself. Ultimate Fantasy XII was fully up my alley after I realized I might straight up program my get together members to simply combat on auto for hours whereas I watched TV, however even this was a bit an excessive amount of for me.
The issue with a recreation like Summoners Battle: Chronicles is that even if you wish to manually management your characters, it looks like tedious busywork anyway. You’re actually simply operating round an enormous, but considerably empty, open-world to do fetch quests, and after some time, you’ll possible simply give in to the temptation of letting the sport play itself.
I’ll say, nonetheless, that I used to be pleasantly stunned by how lenient the gacha system was. Spend any period of time within the cellular recreation neighborhood and also you’ll quickly study that the unique Summoners Battle was infamous for being a cash black gap for anybody who dared attempt to summon a brand new character. With out a pity system in place, attempting to get new items in that recreation was a nightmare.
Fortunately, Chronicles does have a pity system for every of its banners, with most of them guaranteeing a 4 or 5-star unit in 100 pulls or much less. It’s not essentially the most beneficiant gacha recreation in historical past, but it surely’s actually extra consistent with trade requirements, particularly given the collection’ lower than stellar monitor report. In fact, it stays to be seen simply how a lot foreign money earnings F2P gamers will get. My account within the preview construct was stacked with loads of sources, permitting me to drag as a lot as I wished, which was nice for testing out new companions, but it surely was tough to find out simply how F2P-friendly the sport could be.
Given that almost all gacha MMOs are likely to lean closely in the direction of the pay-to-win aspect, nonetheless, I wouldn’t get my hopes up.
That stated, it’s tough to not at the least suggest Chronicles to anybody who’s even remotely within the collection or the style as a complete. Summoners Battle: Chronicles excels on the presentation entrance, with pretty character and summoning animations that simply make the sport really feel extra polished general. Even when the sport does find yourself favoring the whales and dolphins, the barrier to entry is so low that I’d say it’s value trying out on the very least if you wish to see what it’s all about.
All of your summoned companions get carried over between characters, which suggests there’s loads of freedom to experiment with the totally different courses with no need to begin over. And whereas PvP will possible be dominated by the whales with insane maxed out items, it’s simple sufficient to avoid PvP since there’ll at all times be an abundance of PvE-centric fetch quests to do within the open-world.
With how massive the Summoners Battle fan base continues to be, there’s little doubt that Chronicles will likely be profitable in attracting and sustaining a devoted participant base at launch. On the finish of the day, all of it comes right down to how you’re feeling concerning the gameplay, or lack thereof, particularly within the early hours. In case you simply wish to get misplaced on this animated world with out worrying about any type of significant story or fight, then Summoners Battle: Chronicles is perhaps the best informal romp for you.
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