Top Critic Average
Overflowing with charming personalities and buoyed by a deep and rewarding combat system, Exist Archive is a nice addition to the Vita library. It's just too bad that recycled dungeons and tedious grinding show up to spoil the fun.
Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky mends Metroidvania style platforming and exploring with a traditional JRPG with turn-based battles to surprisingly good effect.
Here is a JRPG that knows what it sets out to do, and executes it in a fantastically fun way. The unique battle system, solid platforming, and interesting story should keep players going for the game's entire duration, even despite the grinding. The overall presentation takes a bit of getting used to, but it is genuinely good looking, if a little rough around at the edges, with great music and passable voice-acting. It's recommendable to Valkyrie Profile fans, though it differs from that series in many ways.
Exist Archive is a game that deserves more people giving it a go. Thankfully, getting each of the endings isn’t a huge hassle but if you’re entire unsure, feel free to use a guide as it is a pretty lengthy game that you might not want to play again in a hurry!
Exist Archive is a JRPG brought to us by Spike Chunsoft and tri-Ace. Maybe recognizable from their works such as Danganronpa and Valkyrie Profile respectively, these two came together to create a solid JRPG that covers most of its bases in: gameplay, music, and story, although perhaps lacking a bit in gameplay explanation.
For all its early-stage failings, Exist Archive is an excellent game once it finds its groove. As long as you go in knowing what to expect and knowing it will get better eventually, it's a game I'd recommend to anyone who likes JRPGs.
With a cool cast of characters, a suspenseful story, a huge and beautiful world, unique exploration, addictive combat a and main scenario dozens of hours long, Exist Archive has quite a lot to offer the action RPG fan. You can and will spend many fun hour playing this. Despite the issues it’s worth the price of admission, particularly for its fast combat, a wonderfully pleasant contrast to the waves of purely turn-based JRPGs we constantly see.
Despite the bumpy and confusing start, the excellent plot -combined with a rather satisfying gameplay and a delightful art style- make Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky a recommended experience for any fan of the genre.
Review in Italian | Read full review
Within Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky you will be treated to a game featuring a unique storytelling angle, amazing art design, a roster of a dozen compelling and unique characters and a beefy campaign. It legitimately feels like a successor to the Valkyrie Profile series, from the people that made the series what it is today. Despite its repetitive nature, this is still an adventure that is worthy of exploring, as long as you have plenty of free time on your hands.
While it may not be the timeless classic that the original Valkyrie Profile strived to be so many years ago, Exist Archive takes that inspirational gameplay and infuses it with more modern tropes.
Exist Archive is a title elevated by its superb combat that remained enjoyable even after a thousand encounters. However, it doesn’t have much more to offer outside of the combat, as there’s a serious lack of variety in the overall gameplay. The repetitive nature of exploring one dungeon after another, punctuated by the odd event here and there played against my patience. Even though I can safely say that I enjoyed my initial playthrough, I can’t say the same about the prospect of playing through it once more to get an alternative ending.
Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky feels like the spiritual successor to Valkyria Profile series, but without the added depth and complexity of the story and characters. Those who were hoping for a good action RPG can still have an enjoyable experience.
Though it's not titled Valkyrie Profile, this RPG succeeds in expanding the systems of its spiritual predecessor under an unusually refreshing premise with a few structural blemishes.
Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky is a great RPG for the Vita. While the menus can seem to get in the way at times either because of loading or because of what you need is a few tabs over, the rest of the experience from the exploration, to the combat, over to the character interactions and dialog is solid and worth the many hours that it provides.
Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky has a solid foundation in its art style, characters, and combat. It’s just a shame that a lack in variation holds it back from being something truly engaging.
A game for all the Valkyrie Profile fans starving for something new. At first it seems like a generic RPG, but it grows on one thanks to its polished and charming world.
Review in Spanish | Read full review
Even though Exist Archive is a pretty game that blends Metroidvania stages with traditional JRPG elements very well, it simply fails to deliver when it comes to variety.
Exist Archive is an intriguing follow-up to Valkyrie Profile, but its deficiencies in some major areas make it a hard sell in a season already packed with stellar RPGs.
There’s a lot to be had here, but the PS Vita version of Exist Archive could have used some more attention. Still, in the proper hands, there’s plenty of JRPG goodness to get lost in.
Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky is a test as much as a game, with some interesting new ideas being applied to a pretty standard JRPG. There are some highs and some lows, but the overall product is lacking in severe ways that are amplified by the generally promising new concepts. However, a strong story and some exploration options make this a game to consider.
I can’t say that this is a game that will appeal to everyone however, as the grinding it requires can easily turn you off of the experience. So much of the game feels like superfluous padding that oftentimes gets in the way of enjoying the story and aesthetic.
The prospect of all these mechanics coming together was something fresh, but it quickly turned into a long and boring grind that was 100% over inflated for no reason. The story puts the final nail of mediocrity into it’s coffin.
Fundamentally, Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky is playable, and diehard JRPG fans desperate for action will find something here. Given its spiritual successor status of a great game, it only serves to remind how much is missing here in any sort of comparison. The platforming is uninspired, the story descends into childish tropes rapidly, and the entire game crawls at a glacial pace of endless combat.
Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky is an advertisement for the mantra that less is more. There's an enjoyable ten hour game here, but it's buried in a repetitive and frustrating forty hour experience in which the majority of the content not only feels superfluous, but actually detrimental to the whole. The story it tells might be good enough to justify grinding through the uninspired battles and platforming sections were the game dramatically shorter, but as it is the sporadic narrative can't save what is a largely tedious affair.
Seeing Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky in action definitely makes clear its similarities to tri-Ace’s Valkyrie Profile, though unfortunately the same height of quality is not reached.