In my many years of gaming, it’s hard to think of RPGs that don’t focus on story. My favorites all contain a deep and engaging storyline that pushes me toward its ultimate finale. At the same time, I like RPGs that try new or different things. So, when I first saw The Legend of Legacy and its HD Remaster, it instantly caught my eye. This is an RPG with seven different characters each with their motivations. It gave me Octopath Traveller vibes, but this is far from that. I enjoyed aspects of this game, but not enough to keep me going.

A cutscene sequence from The Legend of Legacy

Welcome to Avalon, you’re now a cartographer

In The Legend of Legacy, you start the game as one of seven adventurers who arrive on the newly discovered island of Avalon. Each has their reason for being there, but ultimately you’re looking to uncover its history Your chosen character is randomly joined by two other characters (with the remaining four wandering the main hub town of Initium whom you can also recruit). You are tasked with assisting the King’s soldiers scout a strange area.

You essentially become a cartographer, which you’ll be doing for a good chunk of the game. Since this island isn’t fully discovered, there is much to discover. So, you’ll now walk around filling out maps, and learning the truth behind the island’s history and hopefully finding cool new things along the way. Filling out the maps allows you to discover new areas of Avalon. It also allows you to sell the information you’ve gathered to buy additional maps/jobs to fill out or on new gear.

The act of map “drawing” would be a lot more fun if there were some interesting things to discover. For the first few locations, you’re spending most of the time just walking around with very little else to do. You might find a secret location or encounter a surprise attack, but not much else. These locations don’t offer enough variety to keep you engaged.

The character Bianca with her Cleave attack in The Legend of Legacy

Forget random battles, what are your thoughts on random upgrades?

In combat, this game incorporates a slightly different approach to character leveling. Instead of having a distinct “XP to level up”, it focuses on randomization to a slight degree. The more you fight, the more upgrades you eventually get. However, what you earn won’t always happen when you hope or expect.

It works two ways. Your characters will improve their HP, overall attack strength, and Special Powers (SP) at random after fights. I’ve noticed that you’re more likely to get these upgrades after longer and harder fights. Easy battles won’t improve your stats. It’s the same for improving and unlocking additional attacks. The more you perform an attack, the better it gets. At the same time, you will also unlock or “Awaken” new attacks at random times.

The idea of a new attack skill “awakening” is interesting. Out of nowhere, your character will perform an attack you weren’t necessarily expecting. It might be an attack that does significant damage. Or, it might be great at parrying oncoming attacks. The only downside is that attacks are associated with the weapon they are wielding. Every weapon type has its own set of attacks. So, if you decide to change from a short sword to a larger one or even a bow, then you’ll need to learn a whole new set of skills.

Also, the skills don’t “awaken” in a specific sequence. I had two characters using the same same sword but the types of attacks they had access to were completely different. This is kind of nice in the sense that you get variety in attack types. But, when you know there is a great move one character can do but the other can’t, it can feel a bit disappointing not knowing when you might get access to it.

Your team facing off against a large enemy in The Legend of Legacy

There is a lot of repetition

Variety is a huge problem in this game, especially early on. Not only are you traversing through areas that lack content, but you’re also facing off against the same enemy types multiple times. Some areas do have enemies that “feel” unique to that location. Unfortunately, there are far too many foes that appear in every location. This is a gripe in most RPGs, but it’s even more evident here. It’s disappointing because it hampers the combat system which I enjoy.

There is a pretty sizeable enemy character that hovers in the air of multiple locations. It’s a giant bird that can wipe your squad and end your game quickly if you’re not prepared. They are avoidable if you don’t walk in its predictable path, but they are everywhere. I was certain it was a one-time foe, but that’s not the case. Again, for the most part, if you time your walking properly, you can avoid them. But, it got boring facing it multiple times as I was trying to complete the map I was working on.

I also never felt the need to use the other characters that I recruited in town. The three I started with Meurs, Garnet, and Bianca complemented each other well enough that I was content with just staying with them and seeing how much more powerful I could get them. Perhaps the story expands to the point that you need to incorporate other heroes, but that’s not the case in the first dozen hours.

The character Meurs running around a forest area in The Legend of Legacy

A different type of RPG that might only appeal to a certain audience

With the time I spent, it’s tough to recommend The Legend of Legacy HD Remastered. While I compliment it for being a different kind of Japanese-style RPG, its lack of a story and heavy focus on randomization will only appeal to a niche audience. Even if you enjoy dungeon crawl-type RPGs like Etrian Odyessy, this might not have the longevity to keep most players engaged.

A copy of The Legend of Legacy HD Remastered was supplied to me by the publisher.