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Arc of Alchemist is an RPG/ Adventure game, according to the info on Nintendo’s web page it has been newly polished for a western release. Released from a publisher and developer who have a lot of RPG games in their back catalogues. I thought I was in for an enjoyable RPG adventure when I took the game on to review. Unfortunately, that was not to be the case! In my opinion Arc of Alchemist should never have been released in the eShop or advertised as “Newly Polished” in Nintendo’s blurb for the game, and priced at $40. It did get an update on the day of release but I can honestly say it has made no difference to how the game runs and preforms.
Despite the short length and simplistic combat, Arc of Alchemist was a very fun Action RPG to play through. The combination of Hack ‘n Slash, RPG, Base Building, and puzzles all came together to create an interesting game, although the story is a little generic and predictable at times. If going for the platinum trophy, the grind is quite intense and will take you roughly twice as long as you spent completing the game for the first time. I would have liked a longer narrative, as the game was over when I had just really got into it, but the story had a definitive end (for now) so I hope we get a sequel or prequel sometime in the future to expand upon the world the developers have created.
Action RPGs don't get much simpler than Arc of Alchemist but that's a part of its charm. So, if you're looking for a basic and surprisingly rewarding hack and slash adventure then give it a go. Just don't expect it to feel like a current gen experience.
Arc of Alchemist really is more than the sum of its parts. The gameplay is stable and works for a time since it never evolves, the town building elements are really only there as a way to limit how fast you get new equipment, and there’s loads of story to experience as long as you remember to go back to the base to see it. Compared to a lot of Compile Heart titles, this is truly a short and sweet one but it’s also one that could potentially become something if they stick with it. It was fun and again, without spoilers, with how it finishes I’m hoping for a sequel that could continue the tale and hopefully add other refinements. The only thing that I’ve got to wonder though is… why did they call it Arc of Alchemist when there’s ZERO alchemy in it.
At the end of the day, Arc of Alchemist delivers a decent gaming experience. The characters' personalities are fun, and their antics are worthy spectacles. The building mechanics are a fun respite from the otherwise ho-hum aspects of the game. Those who are interested in the genre may find this to be worth their time, but the music, art, and significant chunks of the gameplay are too blasé to talk up.
Arc of Alchemist is an RPG game that had lots of potentials to be great but unfortunately, its different parts don’t match together well. There are problems in the combat system and some main RPG elements. The graphics also look outdated. Despite all this, You can still enjoy the game, but Idea Factory has many better RPG games than Arc of Alchemist.
Review in Persian | Read full review
Arc of Alchemist has all the ingredients of a good game, but something went very wrong in the cooking process. The characters are all pretty well written and I think they are the most interesting part of this title. The main story is rushed a bit in places and very predictable. The combat itself isn’t bad, but it’s pretty basic overall and gets stale quickly. The graphics look decent and the open areas fit the the story well, but the performance takes a huge hit in later areas. The game is pretty short, most folks will probably wrap this one up in around 10 hours, and you can add some time to that if you decide to go new game+ or get the true ending. The flaws make this one pretty hard to justify at its $39.99 price tag, but if you’re looking for a decent adventure with some funny and interesting characters, this would be one to consider during a decent sale.
There’s a lot of things that frustrated me while playing Arc of Alchemist. Throughout the entire adventures, there’s a variety of things that just make the game unpleasant. Had I played this game ten years ago, I might forgive it a bit more because of the unique mechanics that it introduces, but it just doesn’t work today.
The premise behind Arc of Alchemist’s world and its story is a good one. The implementation, however, could be better and the game feels incomplete due to its uneven combat as well as its awkward interface and systems. Given my affinity for old-school JRPGs and cute character designs, Arc of Alchemist should be a game that I absolutely love. Instead, I now find myself wondering what could have been.
You might have noticed that I’ve reviewed both the Switch and PlayStation 4 versions of this game. And, while I fully admitted that I had fun with the PS4 version, I can’t say the same for this. Part of the appeal of the Switch is being able to play the game on the go—something that you can’t currently do with this version of the game. If you really want to play the game and don’t want to wait, I’d just suggest getting it for PS4 as it runs more smoothly. But, for those diehard handheld fanatics out there, I’d hold off on getting this until it gets patched. If it ever gets patched at all.
Arc of Alchemist is an RPG that most people who play will forget about it shortly after finishing it. Given an average finish time of 6-8 hours (without new game plus), the journey is over before it really feels like it's begun. What's here isn't really impressive to look at, either. The Lunagear concept is slightly interesting, but mixed with the blandness of the rest of the game it doesn't make this a must-have release. If you really like building bases, you may have some fun with Arc of Alchemist. The rest of us can wait on a meatier RPG to take up our time with.
At only ten hours long, Arc of Alchemist won't waste much of your time. This wasteland has seen better days and couldn't come as recommended to any but the most ardent of Idea Factory fans.
Hardcore JRPG fans will likely enjoy customizing the base, upgrading the facilities, and perhaps even the simplicity of the combat. However, for anyone looking for a worthwhile RPG experience, Arc of Alchemist is not it.
The music at least alleviates some of the monotony and players won’t need to spend too long with it to spark the ending credits, but the combat and systems contrive to make the gameplay far from enjoyable, and the story is almost not worth mentioning. One can only hope that it allows lessons to be quickly learned ahead of any future action RPG endeavours.
Arc of Alchemist is not technically broken, which is the best thing I can say about it. Combining the most basic combat, the most complicated menu system, the weirdest economy, some pretty poor PS2-era graphics, and the densest, most indecipherable tips section, Arc of Alchemist is indeed reminiscent of a work of alchemy – if said alchemist was attempting to turn your valuable time into dust. Avoid at all costs.
Arc of Alchemist on the Nintendo Switch may look pretty and attractive when looked at its still pictures but that should not deceive anyone: this game has a poor performance, its plot and characters are completely uninspiring and the overall gameplay mechanics fail to compel and to entice the players. Add to that a steep launch price and there are very few reasons why anyone would want to spend too much time around this effort.
Review in Portuguese | Read full review
Arc of Alchemist feels so very dated, it could easily be confused for an early Idea Factory title getting its remaster on Switch… without anything actually remastered. Unremarkable and uninspired, it's a quintessential mindless dungeon-crawling RPG, with no real hook to set it apart. There are a million games out there that do exactly what Arc of Alchemist does, but better in every way.
Arc of Alchemist features repetitive combat, tired tropes, an empty world, and a poorly thought out and written story. There is nothing interesting in this package, just skip it.
Arc of Alchemist could have been a fun tactical RPG. Trouble is, it’s squashed between outdated exploration, a half-formed battle system, and a general lack of polish that altogether makes the game’s flaws impossible to look past. Within the context of the many fantastic JRPGs that are out there, I can’t pretend Arc of Alchemist is worth your time.
Thanks to the choppy framerate, horrible combat, and forgettable characters and story, Arc of Alchemist fails to elicit anything more than a shrug and a sigh. Unless you're a hardcore Idea Factory and Compile Heart fan, stay far, far away from this one.
Compile Heart and Idea Factory's games usually stand out somehow while having other weaker aspects. Arc of Alchemist is probably their most well-balanced title in terms of quality. Unfortunately, what stands out here is the lack of quality.
Review in Portuguese | Read full review
Arc of Alchemist is a catastrophic disaster on Switch. The game dips and climbs in framerate constantly, the visuals are so downgraded that it can be difficult to even make out key aspects, and the experience is overall miserable. There is a decent enough action RPG buried under all of this, but the abysmal performance should have never been accepted for release, and I’m outright ashamed they thought this port was in a good state to release, and haven’t fixed it since.