The latest game from Tokyo RPG Factory, Lost Sphear, which happens to be the sequel to 2016’s I Am Setsuna, is such a great game. It successfully blends two different types of battle systems into one combative experience, utilizes awesome machinery that assists your adventure, and it tells an interesting, yet very familiar, story, which happens to be enough to keep you invested.
Lost Sphear takes place within a land which happens to be vanishing before your very eyes, which is a similar story to Dragon Quest VII, and it’s up to a boy named Kanata and his group of friends to save the day before it disappears from existence.
Throughout your adventure you will have to collect memories which are scattered across the land. These are also obtainable by defeating dungeon monsters and bosses as well. Although the game places a huge emphasis on grabbing these shiny little objects, it shouldn’t be seen as a chore, as achieving memories happens to be essential for story and world progression. I’m not much of a “go and collect these” person, i.e. Super Mario Odyssey, but I was incredibly happy to spend an endless amount of time traveling throughout the world to collect these items that unlock such a beautiful world and story.
Unlike most RPGs, Lost Sphear doesn’t plague the adventure with countless waves of random battles after every other step, which is both a good and bad thing. For instance, the game successfully blends two types of combat systems into one: turn-based and action, but these intense moments sadly came few and far between. As entertaining as it was to switch between playable characters during battle sequences, with some given the ability to strike multiple enemies at once, these encounters were secluded to caves and dungeons. Although it was nice to explore the world in peace in search for more scattered memories, it would have been equally enjoyable to experience the brilliant combat system outside of enclosed areas. It’s like having a sweet-tooth and not being able to enjoy more of a delicious treat when your mind, body, and soul absolutely crave it to no end.
Rather than destroying enemies and monsters with swords and magic abilities, you’re also given the chance to smash them into oblivion with Vulcosuits, which are really cool mech-like machines. These allow the player to provide more powerful attacks, and while that sounds great, in reality they’re a bit limited in operation. For instance, like magic attacks, Vulcosuits use energy which depletes after every attack, some requiring more VP energy than most, but once the ability to use them dissipates, they essentially become useless during fights. Without VP, a character essentially has to skip their turn in order to unequip the suit during battle. This means you must be aware of how much energy you have left, and be prepared to refuel as often as you would like to use them in combat. As cool as it was to utilize Vulcosuits to destroy enemies, I definitely made it a point to use them sparingly.
Words cannot express the love I have for Lost Sphear. It’s such a great game to play on the Nintendo Switch. Although it did have a few shortcomings, like the fact that enemy encounters are secluded to enclosed areas, and Vulcosuits must be used quite sparingly, I couldn’t seem to put it down. Perhaps it was the awesome combat system and excellent story that kept me playing, either way, I’m glad I had the opportunity to immerse myself in it.