Game: Legrand Legacy
What Legrand Legacy surprised me with right away was how story focused it is, despite being a combat-centric RPG. Finn, a slave boy who miraculously survives a Colosseum death-match is your pawn, and amidst the gorgeous 2D backgrounds and velvet smooth animations, a rich story built of strange NPCs and alluring sidequests shifts into motion.
Gedo, your new master, isn’t the typical companion – and I’m not just referring to his creepy appearance. He escorts you through the fictional and very Middle-Eastern looking city of Tel Harran on your journey to the Rahas Desert. Along the way – and here I recommend Xbox 360 controllers for less delay and a more comfortable playthrough – you meet local merchants and bipedal lions (superior to humans in this universe) who act as points of trade and amusing interludes respectively. Legrand Legacy is dialogue heavy, and the writing could certainly be lifted here and there, but it shines regardless thanks to a captivating, well-developed and immersive fantasy plot.
Once you’ve entered the desert, mythical beasts abound, and if you dare to make contact an epic turn-based battle sequence with tension-fuelled symphonic music unfolds; The miniature tutorials prepare you right before, but you’ll still need fast reaction times and a serious amount of concentration to execute attacks that are ‘perfect’ or ‘good’. Quick thinking (and good frame rates) can really make a difference between life and death, because combat relies so much on precision timing within a very narrow window. I love that enemies are varied and come with an unpredictable barrage of assaults based on different elements; They can even paralyse you into frustrating unresponsiveness. It’s challenging, adrenaline-pumping and a nice counter to the more laid-back style of narrative delivery, but what’s most important is that the team-based meet up of attack and defence is actually fun; Slaying monsters rewards you with XP and, of course, the satisfaction of victory. The only thing I’d improve is making the transition between attack options smoother and more responsive.
Legrand Legacy is by no means perfect, but its impressive combination of strong, mysterious lore, fluid animations and refreshing battle sequences make it a standout RPG to watch out for.
Legrand Legacy is expected for release in Q3 of 2017 for PC.
A copy of the game was provided by the publisher for the purpose of this review.