Register  |   Log In  |  
Sign up to our weekly newsletter    
Search   
Empire Magazine and iPad
Follow Me on Pinterest YouTube Tumblr
Empire
Trending On Empire
The Future Of Film
The 100 Greatest Video Games
The Making Of The West Wing
Subscribe To Empire Today
Save money and get 12 issues for only £25
London Film Festival 2014
Our round-up of the galas, films and interviews
Reviews
STAR RATINGS EXPLAINED
Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
Poor 2 Stars
Tragic 1 Star

PACKSHOT
Ys: Memories Of Celceta

GAME DETAILS
Released
24 February 2014
Format
Vita
Developer
Nihon Falcom

LATEST GAME REVIEWS
Forza Horizon 2
4 Star Empire Rating
Bayonetta 2
5 Star Empire Rating
Driveclub
4 Star Empire Rating
Alien: Isolation
5 Star Empire Rating
Middle-earth: Shadow Of Mordor
4 Star Empire Rating



5 STAR REVIEWS
Bayonetta 2
5 Star Empire Rating
Alien: Isolation
5 Star Empire Rating
Last Of Us Remastered, The
5 Star Empire Rating
Mario Kart 8
5 Star Empire Rating
Titanfall
5 Star Empire Rating

Ys: Memories Of Celceta


submit to reddit

Ys: Memories Of Celceta (2014)
Review
For aficionados of gaming history, the Ys series is a curiosity. One of the oldest RPG franchises in Japan, precious few entries in the series have made it westward. That’s a real shame, as Ys has always stood apart from its genre mates, delivering speedy real-time combat and an ongoing story with a returning lead character, adventurer Adol Christin.

Memories Of Celceta is technically a remake of 1993’s Ys IV, at the time outsourced by original studio Nihon Falcom. The result was two separate games (one by Tonkin House, one by Hudson Soft), neither of which ever quite fit with the series’ continuity. Despite being an interquel, this updated take works well as an introduction for newcomers, investing players in Adol’s character and the style of the series.

Although the story of this instalment isn’t deserving of any particular praises being sung – an amnesiac Adol explores the land of Celceta to both restore his memories and defeat the dark force responsible for their loss – Ys is one of the most, well, ‘game-y’ J-RPGs around. With no random encounters or menu navigation to worry about, combat feels like a hybrid of Dynasty Warriors-esque hack-n-slash action and an arcade beat ‘em up. Hammering away at the Vita’s square button doles out basic attacks and will be enough to wade through most foes, but more powerful skills are activated by the right shoulder button and any one of the face buttons. In lieu of high scores, successfully juggling skills, timed guards and dodges, and targeting enemies’ weaknesses rewards more crafting items. It’s a nice way of rewarding players who make the most of the combat system.

These materials can then be refined in towns and used to reinforce weapons and armour. Rare is the piece of fantasy bling that can’t be somehow improved in Ys, and figuring out the best way to power up a weapon or add certain attributes is strangely compelling. Those combat skills are customisable too, each providing different effects that can alter the flow of combat without slowing down the whole affair. It all adds a level of complexity to the game that the simplistic battles would otherwise obscure.

This twofold approach, simple enough for immediate engagement, detailed enough for stat-heads to really dig into, is what makes Ys a real joy. Memories Of Celceta isn’t the best looking game on Vita, and its music can be overly repetitive, but it is nevertheless relentlessly absorbing. Couple that quality with fine use of the Vita’s functions (such as bringing up enemy info with a tap, or issuing commands to Adol’s occasional party members using the rear pad) and the result is a nippy little action RPG perfectly suited to its platform.


Reviewed by Matt Kamen

Write Your Review
To write your review please login or register.

SPECIAL FEATURE
The 301 Greatest Movies Of All Time EMPIRE READERS' POLL: THE 301 GREATEST MOVIES OF ALL TIME
You turned out in your hundreds and thousands, and here are the results... Browse the full list


CURRENT HIGHLIGHTS
Avengers: Age Of Ultron Trailer Reaction
We dive under the hood of Whedon's sequel teaser

10 Of The Most Impressive In-Universe Movie Tie-In Websites
From Blair Witch to Days Of Future Past, expand your cinematic horizons online

The 12 Apps Every Film Fan Needs On Their Smartphone
The handheld essentials to enhance your movie life

Empire Meets Jason Bateman And Tina Fey
The stars of This Is Where I Leave You hang out

The Scariest Film Of The Year? Jennifer Kent On The Babadook
The director talks us through her terrifying new film

10 Horror Spin-Offs We Want To See
After Annabelle, what other supporting characters deserve their own film?

Documentaries: What Happened Next
We track down and interview the stars of great non-fiction films

Subscribe to Empire magazine
Get 12 Issues Of Empire For Only £25!

Get exclusive subscriber-only covers each month!

Subscribe today

Subscribe to Empire iPad edition
Get The Empire iPad Edition Today

Subscribe and save money on annual digital subscription

Subscribe today
Buy single issues

Get 12 issues of Empire for just £25!
Get the world's greatest movie magazine delivered straight to your door! Subscribe today!
Empire's Film Studies 101 Series
Everything you ever wanted to know about filmmaking but were afraid to ask...
The Empire iPad Edition
With exclusive extras, interactive features, trailers and much more! Download now
Home  |  News  |  Blogs  |  Reviews  |  Future Films  |  Features  |  Interviews  |  Images  |  Competitions  |  Forum  |  iPad  |  Podcast  |  Magazine Contact Us  |  Empire FAQ  |  Subscribe To Empire  |  Register
© Bauer Consumer Media Ltd  |  Legal Info  |  Editorial Complaints  |  Privacy Policy  |  Bauer Entertainment Network
Bauer Consumer Media Ltd (company number 01176085 and registered address 1 Lincoln Court, Lincoln Road, Peterborough, England PE1 2RF)