Nelke and the Legendary Alchemists: Ateliers of the New World is a successful spin-off in that it carries over all of the aspects that make the Atelier role-playing games enjoyable into a new genre. However, there are too many design choices that hold it back from being a great city building title.
Nelke & the Legendary Alchemists is an intriguing take on the long-running JRPG series, but it just doesn't do a good job of crafting a management experience that feels rewarding or engaging. Even once you're used to the overwhelming menus and systems, it never feels like you're a part of the town you're building from behind the walls menus, charts and numbers. It was a treat to see previous Atelier characters interact and talk to each other, but that bit of fanservice doesn't make up for the lacking gameplay.
Nelke & the Legendary Alchemists can be a dissapointment to the series' fans, as it left behind its main focus (RPG) to embrace the management of a city, with simple and routinary mechanics. What's worst is that even if it includes most of the main characters from the series, it doesn't use them in all of its full potential...
Review in Spanish | Read full review
Nelke & the Legendary Alchemists: Ateliers of the New World is an interesting take on the Atelier franchise but one that lacks most of what makes the series fun in the first place.
Gust has decided to try something a little different in the spinoff Nelke & The Legendary Alchemists: Ateliers of the New World, but it is still a worthy entry in the series for its unique town building elements and ability to maintain the low key type of experience that fans will find familiar.
Instead of a glorious celebration of all things Atelier, Nelke & the Legendary Alchemists comes off more like a misguided attempt at creating a spinoff by toning down all the elements that makes Atelier games enjoyable in the first place.
Nelke & The Legendary Alchemists: Ateliers of the New World is a nice simulator with recognizable characters and cute graphics, but annoying time limits and inconvenient interface.
Review in Russian | Read full review
Nelke & the Legendary Alchemist is a wonderful celebration of past Atelier games, all while bringing something genuinely new and different to the table. While many of the RPG elements have been greatly toned down, the town-building aspects are so addictive and entertaining that you can forgive the simplicity. A light and breezy atmosphere topped off with so many charming character interactions make Nelke's story an undeniably pleasant adventure.
Nelke & the Legendary Alchemists: Ateliers of the New World is a small breath of fresh air for the Atelier series, featuring a town-building experience that's different from anything that has been seen in the series before. The mechanics, while not particularly deep, are quite solid and they manage to make the gameplay loop quite engaging, together with the excellent character interaction. The game is clearly aimed at longtime fans of the series, but even those with a more generic knowledge of the Atelier games will find something to like. Just don't expect anything outstanding or revolutionary.
Although basic in parts, it's so easy to get addicted to Nelke & the Legendary Alchemists: Ateliers of the New World. Alchemy gives a wonderful twist to the city management gameplay, and everything is so charming that it's easy to get lost in building up the town and watching it grow.
On the other hand, if you're on the market for a competent and interesting city builder with some casual JRPG toppings sprinkled on, adorable artwork, great voice acting, and a veritable celebration of the legacy of the Atelier series and of its many characters, I can definitely recommend giving Nelke & the Legendary Alchemists: Ateliers of the New World a try.
A spin-off title of the niche Atelier series, Nelke may provide some neat cameos for long-time fans, but otherwise isn't a very interesting game to play.
Those who love the time management and relationship aspects of Atelier will likely have a blast. As for those who like exploration, fighting monsters and being the achieving your dream might walk away a little disappointed. But, if nothing else, this is a title that certainly holds true to the franchise and caters to a different player base.
Whether you are a true fan of the Atelier franchise, or just like RPG's and town simulation games, this will surely satisfy your thirst. It has enough gameplay elements, with depth, to make any gamer have enough content to last them for a while. The story and voice acting made the already in depth gameplay systems even better. This game is a must buy for any RPG or town simulator fan, especially as the Nintendo Switch lacks in town simulation games.
Nelke & the Legendary Alchemists: Ateliers of the New World is not the most complex city management game ever devised, but it is quite enjoyable.
Nelke and The Legendary Alchemists is a celebration of the Atelier series in the truest sense. Putting forward an experience both accessible to series newcomers and engaging for veterans, it does a brilliant job of captivating players despite its relatively easy to grasp gameplay loop. Though slightly let down by its RPG elements, it's a game I can recommend for anybody who enjoys careful planning and watching their efforts slowly come to fruition; your ideal town is right at your fingertips.
Not everything works about the title, like the investigations and opening portions of the adventure. Particularly the latter could've been so much better by not throwing me into an unskippable tutorial. Once you get handed the reigns over the journey, it is a surprisingly fun town management game I couldn't stop playing.
Nelke & The Legendary Alchemists is a title that celebrates the Atelier series and, at the same time, brings a new experience to its players. Administrating a city and watching it slowly growing and developing was a pleasant experience which I hope Gust keeps improving in the future.
Review in Portuguese | Read full review
Nelke and the Legendary Alchemists is a completely different experience to a traditional Atelier game. It focuses more on building and establishing a successful town than doubling down on the mix of alchemy and turn-based battles. It is essentially offering fresh gameplay opportunities with cameos from familiar faces.
But in the end, if all you're interested in is the crafting system and making in-game profit, those aspects are so well-developed that even the most avid fans of the city-builder genre will feel satisfied.