The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III

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Percentile Rank

The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III is ranked in the 90th percentile of games scored on OpenCritic.

Rating Summary

Based on 41 critic reviews
Mighty Man

OpenCritic Rating

84

Top Critic Average

93%

Critics Recommend

Based on 41 critic reviews

Score Distribution

Unscored Reviews

Backlog Battle
Unscored
Unscored
Oct 15, 2019
Trails of Cold Steel 3 Review | 98 Hours Later | Backlog Battle video thumbnail

Scored Reviews

GameSkinny
Oct 15, 2019

Trails of Cold Steel 3 is a masterclass in storytelling that improves nearly everything in the franchise's history.

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PSX Brasil
100 / 100
100 / 100
Oct 15, 2019

Despite the challenges of having to carry the story behind two of the best JRPGs of the last decade, The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III more than lives up to its legacy, delivering an experience anchored in a narrative that, despite taking a little bit to truly develop, manages to be one of the most surprising ones of its genre, and a gameplay even more challenging and fun than its predecessors.

Review in Portuguese | Read full review

RPGamer
5 / 5.0
5 / 5.0
Oct 15, 2019

Trails of Cold Steel III is everything I want from an RPG with a world that fully sucks players in, amazing music and locations in which one can just sit and relax, and a twisting and fascinating story involving incredibly deep characters that are easy to get attached to.

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GamePitt
9.8 / 10.0
9.8 / 10.0
Oct 22, 2019

I honestly doubted that Trails of Cold Steel III could topple the incredible experience I had with the previous two games, oh how I was wrong. Taking everything which made the last two games great, Nihon Falcom has created a more advanced and enhanced version of the game we all know and love. There’s little to fault when a game manages to keep me invested and hooked for over 120 hours on my first playthrough, sat on the edge of my seat with each and every revelation and event, both cheering and getting emotional along with the characters. JRPG fans have to buy this game, it’s mandatory if you’ve played the previous two and enjoyed them as you’re guaranteed to simply love this game without any doubt.

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Jack of All Controllers
9.5 / 10.0
9.5 / 10.0
Oct 15, 2019

The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III is a wonderful game. None of the bad parts combined would ever hold a candle to the sheer amount of joy and fun I had exploring every single corner of this world.

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Push Square
9 / 10
9 / 10
Oct 21, 2019

Trails of Cold Steel III is the best game in the series so far. You're going to have to play the first two titles to get the full picture, but you'll be rewarded with one of the most enjoyable RPG sagas in modern gaming. This latest entry strikes a near perfect balance between story and gameplay, all while juggling an ever-growing cast of great characters and an in-depth, hugely rewarding battle system. Cold Steel III is JRPG joy from start to finish, and it sits alongside the likes of Persona 5 and Dragon Quest XI as one of the PS4's finest.

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We Got This Covered
Oct 31, 2019

Nihon Falcom has delivered yet another stellar entry in the Trails of Cold Steel series. If you're a newcomer, you'll need to start at the beginning to genuinely appreciate the whole package. However, if you're a long-time fan of the franchise, then you'll love every thrilling second of it.

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PlayStation LifeStyle
9 / 10.0
9 / 10.0
Nov 4, 2019

As the third game in a set of direct sequels, tied into several other games set in the same world and timeline, it’s simply amazing those creative juices are still flowing and coherent. It’ll be over soon, but jeez, hell of a run.

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RPG Site
9 / 10
9 / 10
Oct 15, 2019

The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III brings the Erebonia arc of the Trails series to its second half - under a new western publisher, no less. Here are our thoughts on the game:

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Hardcore Gamer
4.5 / 5.0
4.5 / 5.0
Oct 15, 2019

The only real fault you can attribute to Trails of Cold Steel III is how it doesn't quite match the lofty heights the previous two titles deservedly reached.

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Cubed3
9 / 10
9 / 10
Oct 15, 2019

Trails of Cold Steel III is an important title for both Falcom and NIS. For Falcom, it's the penultimate entry in a story arc half a decade in the making - and an incredibly engrossing one, at that. For NIS, it's a step in the right direction after Ys VIII, and proof that The Legend of Heroes' localization is still in good hands moving forward. This is a continuity-heavy RPG with 13 years of video game history, and seven titles building up to it, but the combat and world are strong enough where even newcomers can enjoy the ride. Trails of Cold Steel III is the Erebonia arc at its best.

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ZTGD
9 / 10.0
ZTGD

Top Critic

9 / 10.0
Oct 15, 2019

After a long, grueling wait, the Legend of Heroes makes its triumphant return and I am more than happy to report that the wait has been worth it as Cold Steel III delivers on all fronts with improved visual fidelity, performance and a slew of meaningful new mechanics. Led by a cast of unforgettable characters and an intriguing story arc that will have you begging for more when the credits roll.

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GearNuke
9 / 10.0
9 / 10.0
Nov 9, 2019

Trails of Cold Steel III is one of the best games of the year and a must-play for RPG fans everywhere.

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Digitally Downloaded
Digitally Downloaded

Top Critic

Oct 15, 2019

If you like JRPGs, this is another one you don't want to miss—just hope that Cold Steel IV gets a Western release before too long, because this one ends on one hell of a cliffhanger.

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Gamefa
8.8 / 10.0
8.8 / 10.0
Oct 16, 2019

The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III is one of the best entries in the long-running series. It has a very good, complex and balanced combat system. It continues the epic and massive story of Erebonian Arc and will be an experience with lots of references to previous installments. Despite the very beautiful art design, the technical aspect of the visual is outdated and doesn’t look very good. At all, The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel 3 is a must-buy for the series fan but if you didn’t play previous games, to completely enjoy the epic and complex story of this franchise, I think it is better to start with them.

Review in Persian | Read full review

Video Chums
8.8 / 10.0
8.8 / 10.0
Oct 16, 2019

Trails of Cold Steel III is a phenomenal RPG that genre fans need to play. After completing it and watching how it ends, I absolutely cannot wait to play the fourth and final game in this incredible series.

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NoesPaisparaFrikis
8.8 / 10.0
8.8 / 10.0
Nov 21, 2019

Trails of Cold Steel III is an excellent game that, once again, takes the foundations of the previous ones and builds on them a better, more mature and refined experience. Its main problem is the plot barrier with which you can find yourself if you are new to these leaders. Nothing, of course, that is not solved with a good afternoon of Wikipedia. So, for the third time, I have no choice but to recommend it as strongly as possible. If you like the genre and have no problems with English, The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III is a game that will have you dozens of hours diving in one of the best built universes and with greater continuity and coherence that I remember. See you, for the third time, at Thors Academy.

Review in Spanish | Read full review

Chalgyr's Game Room
8.8 / 10.0
8.8 / 10.0
Oct 15, 2019

The Legend of Heroes - Trails of Cold Steel 3 is the perfect continuation for the series. With the first two chapters telling their story to completion it could be hard to see where things go next with the same protagonist but with his new direction in life? It works really well. From learning in the classrooms and the battlefield to teaching students about both, the only thing left is to wait for Trails of Cold Steel 4 and not spoil it for yourselves as it was released last year and it could be some time before we get our hands on it.

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Spaziogames
8.6 / 10.0
Spaziogames
DottorKillex

Top Critic

8.6 / 10.0
Oct 23, 2019

Falcom did it again: The Legend of Heroes Trails of Cold Steel III is probably their best work up to date, and on of the best JRPgs available for Playstation 4 and PC. The only downside is that you'll need to have played both Chapter 1 and Chapter 2 to better appreciate the writing and story.

Review in Italian | Read full review

Wccftech
8.5 / 10.0
8.5 / 10.0
Oct 26, 2019

With its solid gameplay mechanics, excellent world-building and character development, The Legend Of Heroes: Trails Of Cold Steel III is an excellent Japanese role-playing and a more than worthy new entry in the long-running series. Some small flaws like slow pacing do not impact the experience as much as the lack of knowledge about the entire series do, which lessens the impact of several events and plot development. This makes Trails of Cold Steel III a game that must be played only after the previous two entries in the series have been completed.

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Just Push Start
4.25 / 5.0
4.25 / 5.0
Oct 15, 2019

Graphics aside, The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III is a story-driven experience that delivers that in spades. It's more than enough to make up for some of the shortcomings and is a more intricate story than you'd probably expect. That being said, if story isn't your thing, gameplay and graphics are nothing special. Nothing about them ruins the experience, they're just not on the same level as the story. So if you want to get sucked into a fascinating world, it's hard to say no, though if you're just in it for the gameplay, you might want to look elsewhere.

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GotGame
8.5 / 10.0
8.5 / 10.0
Oct 25, 2019

Whether you’ve been a fan from the beginning or you’re starting out now, The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III is a fine JRPG. It may have an overwhelmingly rich history, but there’s plenty of elements in place to help newcomers.

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SmashPad
Oct 15, 2019

Trails series is quite possibly the best modern JRPG series we have today, and Trails of Cold Steel III finally gives us some more, and more is exactly what we needed.

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Game Informer
8 / 10.0
8 / 10.0
Oct 15, 2019

Trails of Cold Steel III marks another school year full of adrenaline-pumping battles, interesting new faces, and unexpected hardships amidst political turmoil

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GameMAG
8 / 10
GameMAG

Top Critic

8 / 10
Dec 27, 2019

The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III is a large scale classic JRPG with well-designed characters and an interesting storyline, which may seem a bit long with interludes and digressions on the "normal" life of the main characters and political intrigue. This is a small masterpiece that will encourage you to buy the two previous parts of the trilogy and make you look forward to the announcement for the European market of the fourth and final part of the story.

Review in Russian | Read full review

Twinfinite
4 / 5.0
4 / 5.0
Oct 15, 2019

If you are a JRPG fan, this series is a must-play. It’s one of the strongest running, second only to Persona in my opinion. It’s funny, charming, engaging, and occasionally heartbreaking. And it’s absolutely worth the investment.

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The Outerhaven Productions
Oct 15, 2019

Cold Steel III is still a niche JRPG, but it’s time that more people gave this series a shot, especially with this game’s incredibly detailed onboarding features like character bios, lore summaries, and full recaps of previous games.

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CGMagazine
8 / 10.0
8 / 10.0
Oct 15, 2019

Trails of Cold Steel III marches the long-running series ever closer to an explosive climax with satisfying combat, characters, and music.

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GamingBolt
8 / 10.0
8 / 10.0
Oct 18, 2019

If you've been keeping up with the series, Trails of Cold Steel 3 is the strongest outing yet, in spite of some issues that hold it back from its full potential.

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Impulsegamer
4 / 5.0
4 / 5.0
Nov 21, 2019

Absolutely essential if you're a fan. If you've never played a Trails game before, you might want to consider starting at the beginning. Or reading a lot of plot summaries.

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VGChartz
8 / 10
8 / 10
Jan 5, 2018

JRPG fans who can look beyond the dated graphics will discover a tremendous wealth of characters, gameplay, story, and an overall world that you can happily dive into for dozens of hours.

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USgamer
Oct 15, 2019

Trails of Cold Steel 3 doesn't offer much in the way of gameplay innovations, but if you're even glancing in the direction of this game, you're not interested in new ideas. No, you're interested in continuing the dramatic, twisty-turny story of the Erebonian Empire's shenanigans. Trails of Cold Steel 3 resumes the series' magic-infused story of politics and scandal, and the unique battle system still holds up well.

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JRPG.moe
Oct 25, 2019

Trails of Cold Steel III is a fine sequel, although the game often seems to struggling beneath the weight of its growing cast of characters and intersecting stories. As a continuation, it’s a game strictly for existing fans, who’ll get a lot out of it even if they haven’t consumed every last tidbit of Trails content.

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Darkstation
Oct 15, 2019

Trails of Cold Steel III is a must play if you enjoyed the first two games in the series. The game is not radically different from the previous titles, so if you didn’t love them or just do not like JRPGs in general, it won’t change your mind.

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Gamer Guides
Oct 14, 2019

All in all, Trails of Cold Steel III is an excellent Legend of Heroes game that brings the series to a more modern standard. The graphics are a lot better, the battle system is a lot more in-depth if not easy to break and the story is intriguing throughout. If you’re new to the series or have only played the previous Cold Steel games however, you’ll find yourself lost at times with the overall plot and many of the new areas and characters introduced here.

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Metro GameCentral
7 / 10
7 / 10
Oct 22, 2019

A few unfortunate backsteps make the first native PlayStation 4 entry something of a disappointment, but Trails Of Cold Steel is still one of the best old school JRPGs around.

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TheSixthAxis
7 / 10
7 / 10
Oct 21, 2019

The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III the third 80-hour RPG in a series of equally lengthy games. If you're a newcomer, it's a daunting and probably foolish task to try and play this game. If you're a die-hard fan of the Cold Steel series already, you'll get plenty of satisfaction out of the continued plot development and engaging combat. Even the most dedicated of fans, though, are likely to be turned off by the dated visuals and confusing Legend of Heroes crossovers that mar an otherwise impressive story-driven JRPG.

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PowerUp!
6.8 / 10.0
6.8 / 10.0
Feb 11, 2020

It has some solid mechanics, tells a great story, and is really well structured. It’s just not for me.

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Gameblog
6 / 10
6 / 10
Nov 11, 2019

Legend if heroes : Trails of Cold STeel III is a good JRPG with good fights, but the story is like a giant prequel to the fourth episode, with poor main issues, and the graphisms are one generation late.

Review in French | Read full review

GameGrin
6 / 10.0
GameGrin
Adam Hurd

Top Critic

6 / 10.0
Oct 23, 2019

If you are already into the series then it is likely you will already know whether or not you're getting this game. If you are not, I wouldn't recommend you start here unless you like hours of frustrating dialogue with no pay off.

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