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Etrian Odyssey Origins Collection Review

Etrian Odyssey Origins Collection

Developer: Atlus
Publisher: Sega
Platforms: Switch
Release Date: Available Now
Price: $79.99 – Available Here


As we move forward into new generations of gaming, audiences are becoming more demanding of getting their old favorites on new platforms. Being a DS/3DS favorite, the Etrian Odyssey franchise is no new exception to that rule, with many poking at Atlus over the years to see the original trilogy see a re-release on modern consoles. Etrian Odyssey Origins Collection is the answer to that, bringing a remastered treatment to each title, at a rather premium price. Is this trek worth the revisit? Let’s find out.


If I had to start with any warning of this franchise, it would be not to go into it wanting a deep, interesting story – as this set of titles mainly rely on gameplay. That doesn’t mean there isn’t a plot, however. In Etrian Odyssey HD, players simply set out to explore a mysterious place known as the Yggdrasil Labyrinth, located near Etria. The story is really just to keep going downward as new plot-points unfold, with a slightly interesting tale emerging as you progress. Etrian Odyssey II HD has the player set out with a set of explorers to go through this vast labyrinth yet again, with new areas, enemies, and so on along the way. Part III takes place in Armoroad, which hosts new locales as a great earthquake has opened up yet another labyrinth – begging to be explored yet again.

You get the idea? I can say as much as I love the Etrian games, they have never been something for their story, as the plot is simply to discover new faces and places by mapping into the unknown. There is a rich satisfaction to that in and of itself, and narrative takes a backseat as even after spending hours within each title yet again, I still feel rather disattached to any “main hero” or villain you would typically see in most RPGs.


Yes, this is where the heartbeat lies, as it really is all about exploring in a first-person perspective, equipping your squad for victory, and relying on your mapping tool to not get lost in the process. On the Nintendo DS versions of this trilogy, players had to rely on the bottom screen homing their map, where they would draw out locations and mark important areas so they could properly progress forward. All is mostly the same here, but the Switch is now implemented, making it mostly a one-screened affair.

I will admit, the thought of not having two screens seemed like it would making adventuring more cumbersome, but the platform seems to have been perfectly optimized, with players utilizing the touchscreen and button controls to map on the same screen as they progress and explore. Sure, it takes time to dive in and this game isn’t fancy on tutorials – so one will have to have patience while learning the control format, but I felt at home a lot quicker than expected, and many new options have been implemented to make this franchise more accessible to newcomers. Almost every part of your experience can be customized based on your own comfort, and for a Switch port, it is refreshing to see so much attention to detail that was added for these versions.

Sometimes, more options can actually be a hindrance as auto-mapping and even viewing the world as fully explored are available, which can feel like a crutch, sitting there inches away, begging to be used. For a game that relies on its difficulty and the player’s own abilities to successfully map out the world, I don’t know if adding more ease in that way was something that should be available. It almost feels like you are erasing the point of the game. Sure, its always optional, but a very odd addition that kind of comes of as questionable for the overall package. Either way, all three titles can keep one going for hundreds of hours, and the satisfying combat choices and large focus on upgrades and leveling will keep one entertained, as this trilogy works great and is as addictive as ever before.


The art style is fantastic in all three Etrian titles as each have never looked better, with more crisp character models and better looking textures and environments, making this “HD” remake live up to its name. Like msot remakes, the text looks a bit out of place, but there are options to alter that, so most should be able to customize it further with a bit of work with the settings within the game.


The soundtracks are also fantastic, with wonderful tunes that capture a lot of dim atmosphere in order to give the player a sense of urgency and dread. I do think more work could have been added for voices at times as they can sound a bit bland, but alas, since story is not very important, most shouldn’t have any issues with what is offered within this package.


Etrian Odyssey Origins Collection is not for everyone, and that’s ok. This bundle was made for that niche audience that crave these unique titles, and Atlus did a great job optimizing them for a more modern experience. There is still a question of value as the price runs a bit on the high end, but those who are willing to make the plunge are sure to find value in the quality of life improvements found within each HD entry. I for one think we need more HD remakes done with this much care, as high price or not, the Etrian Odyssey franchise feels a lot safer in terms of preservation and future thanks to the release of this collection to the Switch.

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This collection may be priced at a premium level, but for Etrian Odyssey fans, you are sure to remember why this addictive formula is more than welcome on the Nintendo Switch.
This collection may be priced at a premium level, but for <i>Etrian Odyssey</i> fans, you are sure to remember why this addictive formula is more than welcome on the Nintendo Switch.Etrian Odyssey Origins Collection Review