Return to the labyrinth of the world tree

Now that the dust has settled from GDC, I can pause and appreciate what landed on my desk Friday:

Yes, it’s Etrian Odyssey II. Well, Sekaiju No Meikyuu II. Plus bonus booklet and CD, which is being offered up as a sacrifice to Atlus USA in the hopes it will convince them to localize it. Not that I’m too worried — Etrian, if you’ve tried buying a copy lately, is nowhere to be found. Which means Atlus sold through its entire print run. Which, I am led to understand, is a sign that the game was a profitable success for Atlus. Which means there’s zero reason for them not to localize the sequel. Especially when you have moderately high-profile idiots calling the original the second best game published in what might in fact be the single strongest year for gaming ever.

Please note that this time around it’s a radically different game, as you’re ascending into the branches of the Yggsdrasil rather than descending into its roots. Madness!

Anyway, Atlus seems to be announcing new releases about three months before they actually ship, which means I still have until May (at the absolute minimum) to wrap up the original and secure that all-important end-game password. I guess I know what I’ll be taking with me on vacation next month. I’ll be in good company, I think — apparently the original was quite the sleeper in Japan, slowly building impressive enough sales through word-of-mouth that the sequel’s arrival netted a fair amount of enthusiasm in nerd-centric Akihabara.

24 thoughts on “Return to the labyrinth of the world tree

  1. Interesting that this is looking to be up around the time that rumor has it Persona 3: FES is getting an announcement, too.

    Can you imagine the looks on all those fanboy faces if that counter ticks over to reveal Etrian Odyssey II?

  2. Well, I have no idea when or if they’ll announce this. It’s just that the Japanese version came out a couple of days ago, is all.

  3. My work filter is convinced that the akibablog is pornography. Thanks, Parish!

    My only hope is that the work filter has a category for shock sites. That’d be pretty convenient. (“Oh dear, tubgirl is blocked at work. Whatever shall I do? I guess I’ll just have to not look at it”)

  4. If someone could explain to me the significance of the phrase, “I’d thought what I’d do is pretend to be one of those deaf-mutes” I’d really appreciate it.

  5. Hm, scrolling down I see talk of eroge and squishy-breast mousepads, so I guess so. The entry I linked to is above reproach, though.

  6. Marty: It’s a line from Catcher in the Rye, where Holden Caulfield is planning to run away – the line in question is where he’s planning to run to. The significance to the Japanese is that it’s a key plotpoint in the first season of Ghost In The Shell: Stand Alone Complex – it’s incorporated into the logo of the series’ Big Bad, the Laughing Man (also a Salinger reference).

  7. Well, it’s not always an example of being sold out.. from what I’ve heard Puzzle Quest DS ina lot of places was shipped back to the warehouse from various EBs for no discernible reason a week after it came out.

  8. Well the Ebayers seem to be calling it “rare out of print RPG” and pricing it for $40 less than a year after it came out. If that’s any indication.

  9. I abandoned the original but recently started coming back to it (strangely addictive once you get past the slow beginning). Still only Level 14 and started killing wolves on B4F. What’s this password for finishing the game that keeps getting mentioned? I’m hoping to use it as an incentive to keep pushing myself through it.

  10. You can’t buy it from Atlus’ online store. That means it’s out of print, not returned en masse.

    Since I don’t have a Japanese game clear password I can’t say for sure, but I think it allows you to retain your original guild — all the original classes return, and each classes’ four character design choices are consistent with the original (although they’ve been redrawn in more dynamic poses). It also has three new classes. I’ll have a 1UP preview online as soon as I work through my GDC backlog.

  11. Based on the the poking around at the second link in the post, 3 new classes. A gunner, a… spear wielding guy… and, uh… a bear? Right, someone who can read Japanese help me out here. -_-;

  12. Based on rumors on the internetz, the three classes are Gunner (basically a FF Tactics Gunner), Doctor Magus (basically Medic + Dark Hunter + Troubadour), and Pet (basically a Pokemon). All the original classes have been thoroughly tweaked, usually for the better (well, better balance anyway).

    So far the only confirmed things from the password are your guild’s name and whether you obtained the Town Medal or Town Crown (the uber equipment you get for clearing B25 / completing the bestiary).

  13. …An explanation for that comment: I generally have a bad pet peeve towards translated names that don’t make much sense. Doctor Magus being a good example.

    No offense meant by the comment, just… ugh. I hate that stupid name.

  14. I’m sure it will be localized as Witch Doctor, but the actual Japanese name is “Doc Magus.” That’s not a translation, just a straight phonetic transliteration. The Japanese class names in EO are generally lame, to be honest.

  15. They could also go for “Shaman” as the localization, which is the first thing I thought when I looked at the character design. I suppose Witch Doctor is closer to the Japanese version, but who knows.

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