Operation Backlog Completion 2024
Jun 222018

After I covered the release of Legrand Legacy: Tale of the Fatebounds, the developers sent me a PC code so I could review it.

Legrand Legacy is a turn-based RPG styled after classic JRPGs, particularly from the PS1 and PS2 era. Aesthetically, it definitely reminded me of that era (particularly through the occasional silent CGI cutscenes).

It has turn-based combat, but with timed button presses to determine the effectiveness of your move. Your skill with this really determines the difficulty. Battles can be brutal if you’re struggling to get the timing right, but using the system effectively together with exploiting enemy weaknesses makes battles go much better.

(Combat also got easier for me when I realized the healer, Eris, actually has exceptionally powerful magic attacks once her stats are high enough.)

Technically, there is a world map, but since most locations are separated from one another by oceans or dungeons and you can’t enter locations until the plot mentions them, the world map felt more like a nod to the idea than anything else.

Towns present you with a menu from which you can access different areas you’ve already visited, which seems particularly strange since you have to go to each area’s exit to reach the menu and dungeons use the normal structure of interconnected areas. It make it easy to get to specific parts of town, but it always felt a little odd.

The dungeons were hit or miss. Some were all right, while others used gameplay mechanics that felt designed to make them as annoying as possible, such as one dungeon that has high water so you’re forced to walk at a much slower pace. The biggest exception was the final dungeon, which had a clever design and felt satisfying to get past.

Now, for me, the most important parts of an RPG are its story and characters. Legrand Legacy started out strong, and its plot had several interesting parts. One lengthy CG scene was especially exciting… and left me wishing the rest of the story measured up.

Click for major Legrand Legacy spoiler
I also have to give it credit for permanently killing off a character. It was a shock (especially since I relied on her often in combat), but a lot of developers seem unwilling to take a character away like that without replacing them. Being reduced to a 5-person party for the rest of the game made it feel more impactful.

Unfortunately, the party members pull the overall experience down. Some of them are okay and the main character is tolerable, but a few of them (especially Aria and Kael) are downright annoying.

Conflict between the characters generally goes like this: a secret is revealed about one character. Another character becomes furious. The first character swears they had a good reason for not telling. The second character yells about how they can never trust that person again. Other characters suggest that is unreasonable. The second character refuses to listen.

The first time this happened, it was okay. The second time, it felt like maybe an intentional parallel between the two scenes. But after a while, it just started to feel ridiculous. Do none of these people trust each other?

Everything culminated in an ending that, while cool, raised several questions.

Legrand Legacy: Tale of the Fatebounds pays homage to old PlayStation JRPGs and it definitely has some fun moments and cool scenes if you’re a fan of that style of game. Unfortunately, its execution–especially where its characters are concerned–falls short of its potential.

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  3 Responses to “Legrand Legacy: Great Potential, Shaky Execution”

  1. It has an interesting look about it.

  2. […] I reviewed Legrand Legacy earlier this year, most of my criticism fell on the characters and their […]

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