Eiyuden Chronicle: Hundred Heroes — a game review

    TechnologyGamingEiyuden Chronicle: Hundred Heroes — a game review

    Many Suikoden developers, including the late Yoshitaka Murayama, created Eiyuden Chronicle: Hundred Heroes as a spiritual successor to the Suikoden franchise. Does Eiyuden Chronicle live up to the standards of JRPGs that Murayama set almost 30 years ago?

    What is a spiritual successor? It could be summed up as an unrelated product or fictional work inspired by another product or fictional work. Gaming is full of spiritual successors—think Mighty No. 9 for the Mega Man franchise or Yooka-Laylee for Banjo-Kazooie. When Konami announced a remaster of Suikoden and Suikoden II in 2022, my heart started racing as that was the impetus for me to get into games journalism.

    At first glance, Eiyuden Chronicle follows in the 2DHD format that has become popular with JRPG players over the past few years. There are three protagonists: Nowa, a 17-year-old member of the Elitsweiss Watch (or just “The Watch”); Seign Kesling, an 18-year-old officer of the Galdean Empire; and Marisa, a 16-year-old girl who watches over the forest. The discovery of a Primal Lens threatens to plunge the world into war and chaos.

    Eiyuden Chronicle

    You can field up to six characters in battle, keep one in support, and have three in reserve. You can customize what these characters do in “auto-battle” if you just want to get through a particular dungeon or area of the game. Short-ranged characters can only attack from the front line, while medium-ranged characters can attack from either the front or the back line but can only attack the front line, and long-ranged characters should stay in the back as they can hit anything on the field. You can also participate in war battles or one-on-one battles. You can learn magic through rune lenses and certain characters can unite for more powerful attacks. Affixing runes to characters can also increase their physical or magical strength—but be aware that some characters are better at physical attacks, and others are better at magical attacks.

    One of my favorite aspects of Suikoden was the acquisition of a castle where your characters live and provide a variety of services. Eiyuden Chronicle takes this much further — you can grow the base, protect it from enemy invasions, develop new weapons, recruit new characters, and create items. Over time, Fortress Town will grow to the point where you can create guilds that will give you quests and rewards for characters to learn new skills that can be used in battles. You can also grow crops and have livestock and even expand your farm. You can even play a variety of minigames at your Fortress Town, such as cooking, fishing, raising, breeding, and racing animals, and you can even play an in-game collectible card game.

    Eiyuden Chronicle

    One of my complaints about JRPGs, in general, is some of them being too easy. Thankfully, Eiyuden Chronicle has a hard mode, which can be challenging at times, depending on how you build your team. You can even give yourself further restrictions, such as no money drops from enemies, restricting items in battle, or even making shop purchases more expensive. There is so much to do in the game that could easily stretch the completion time much higher than the source material that Eiyuden Chronicle drew inspiration from, especially the recruitment of certain characters that require you to go out of your way to make sure you get them and use them in battle.

    I’ve sunk a lot of time into this game, and it might be one of the best JRPGs in recent years. If you’re looking for something immersive and want great storytelling and a challenge at the same time, give Eiyuden Chronicle: Hundred Heroes a try. As of this writing, there are still things that have yet to be placed into the game, which may give you a reason to come back and explore what the late Yoshitaka Murayama created as a spiritual successor to one of the most underrated JRPG franchises ever.

    Developer(s): Rabbit and Bear Studios
    Publisher(s): 505 Games
    Platform(s): PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, Nintendo Switch

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