Ys: Memories of Celceta - PC/Steam Review

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Help Adol restore his memory and bring peace to the world in this action-packed classic!

  • System: PC (Steam)
  • Publisher: XSEED/ Marvelous
  • Developer: Nihon Falcom
  • Release Date: July 25, 2018
  • Players: Single Player

Ys: Memories Of Celceta - Official PC Launch Date Trailer

Who it Caters to

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As the title of the game suggests, Ys: Memories of Celceta focuses primarily on Adol, as he races around trying to regain his memory about the events that took place within Celceta. In typical Nihon Falcom fashion, Memories of Celceta focuses on its quintessential action RPG elements, combined with a genuinely intriguing story that focuses on companionship, loss, tragedy, and moving through adversity in order to seek solace within.

Ys: Memories of Celceta originally saw its debut on the PlayStation Vita back in 2012 with great applause, as fans of the series complemented its fast-paced gameplay paired with a strong narrative. The title has now officially released on Steam for the first time since its debut, with plenty of perks to give it a more modern feel. If you’re a fan of Nihon Falcom titles then Ys: Memories of Celceta should be a no brainer purchase. If you’re just being introduced to this highly celebrated series then be rest assured that your time with the game will be an extraordinary one.

Nihon Falcom never rests on its laurels whenever it comes to action RPG performance, and with Ys: Memories of Celceta you’re getting the full package and more. With a constant stream of content this is catered to those who love adventure, discovery and a strong plot to keep you engaged for hours.

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What to Expect

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Despite its age, Ys: Memories of Celceta still looks beautiful and much crisper in 60FPS, along with the addition of a configuration system ala Steam to ensure that you can tweak the game to perform to your liking. As we stated earlier, Ys: Memories of Celceta is an action RPG that places much of its focuses on main protagonist Adol, who must regain his memories about past events that will help guide him closer to solving the problems that plague him and his colleagues in the present.

Expect to be enamored by the solid character development as well as exceptional gameplay that’s incredibly easy to pick up, but will require some practice to truly master the combo system. Boss battles are your typical run of the mill Nihon Falcom style battles, which are sure to provide a satisfying challenge without pushing you too hard, along with good voice acting to keep you entertained during the story scenes. Known to fans as Boss Rush mode, this will certainly be keeping you up for hours and will require a strong understanding of the real-time combat features. Will you be able to successfully uncover all of Adol’s past memories in time before it’s too late?

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So before jumping into the major selling point that is gameplay, as per tradition we like to touch base on the visual aspects since they play somewhat of a role as a whole. Ys: Memories of Celceta released in Japan in September of 2012, with its North American Vita release coming a year later. With that in mind it’s going to be clear that on a visual level the game isn’t going to be pristine in a lot of areas. That isn’t to say however that work hasn’t gone into making sure it’s best suited for Steam because frankly, it runs incredibly well in 60FPS as we mentioned in the earlier paragraphs. For that alone, Ys: Memories of Celceta gets massive plus points because it no longer suffers the issues that plagued the Vita, with its somewhat sluggish frame performance and animations looking a little jaded.

The UI still remains the same from the original but with a visual upgrade to make the colors a little more vibrant and less muted than they were on Sony’s handheld. Character cutscenes look much more dazzling on Steam as the colors tend to pop more, while level environments have seen a slight upgrade in terms of texture mapping, etc. There are still some noticeable issues in the level design area, but for a ported Vita title it certainly has better presentation on the Steam version.

Not to mention that with the addition of the Steam configuration system you’re able to fully customize the game to run at an incredibly high frame rate once unlocked, allowing players to truly experience the game like never before.

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Sound, Music

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This is perhaps the biggest selling point after the actual gameplay and is perhaps Nihon Falcom’s greatest achievement as a whole, and that’s the music. Hands down Ys: Memories of Celceta has one of the best game soundtracks our ears have listened to in a very long time. With its mix of slow and emotional piano driven pieces to the incredibly heart pumping rock ensembles, Ys: Memories of Celceta truly doesn’t disappoint in this department and whether you’re a follower of Nihon Falcom or not will not make a difference, as the music will captivate anyone playing. You won’t notice it at first since you’ll be so immersed in the wicked gameplay, multi-character party system, and much more!

Once you’ve played through the game we highly recommend grabbing the official soundtrack to really experience everything without distraction. Did we mention there’s an anime intro in the game that’s totally godlike? No? Ok well now you know, so don’t skip it!


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So of course we simply can’t skip out on the gameplay because well, without it you’d only have an amazing soundtrack to listen to which certainly isn’t bad at all. Those diving into Ys: Memories of Celceta for the first time will be surprised to know that the gameplay is surprisingly easy to pick up, as the game does a splendid job of guiding you through the controls and mechanics as you play. It will certainly feel like you’re just mashing your way through hordes of enemies in the beginning but be rest assured that you’re senseless mashing will need some proper planning, because the further you progress in the game the enemies become much stronger and boss battles are more enduring.

Needless to say, you’ll definitely need to spend time with the game to truly fall in love with it so practice as much as you can during the early stages, so that you’ll be better prepared down the road. With the help of the multi-character party system you’ll be able to swap characters in and out of your party with ease, and if you pair two similar characters together your attacks will receive major buffs, among other perks. This is where Ys: Memories of Celceta gets real interesting because it doesn’t force you to rely solely on Adol to come out victorious, as there will be times where you’ll need to immediately swap to your other party member to deal massive damage.

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Each come with their own unique perks that you’ll need to pay attention to, so as we mentioned earlier it’s not just about mashing your way through to victory. A great deal of strategy plays a major role in successfully overcoming whatever obstacles stand in your way, and while the story itself is somewhat linear it still provides some depth for you to explore. Speaking of story, the game does allow for you to make choices during dialogue which help to better understand and learn more about those around you.

These choices don’t necessarily change the overall plot in any way but it’s still nice to have those choices to help spice things up a little. Ys: Memories of Celceta has one of the most expansive locales in the entire history of the series, allowing you to customize waypoints, and a robust mapping system that will help you if things get confusing. There’s a plethora of things to discover in the game so having the ability to customize your waypoints really helps a ton, especially when hunting around for rare treasure chests that require special keys. You’ll definitely find yourself back tracking a lot because there’s just so much to look for but it’s all worth it because the gameplay is so satisfying from start to finish, that you won’t even realize.

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Honey's Gameplay Consensus:

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In closing, Ys: Memories of Celceta certainly lives up to the expectations that we had coming into the game, which was Nihon Falcom impressing us with its unquestionably impressive music scores. We don’t think there’s ever been a Nihon Falcom title that stuck out like a sore thumb when it comes to poor gameplay or soundtrack, but perhaps you may know and you can comment down below to remind us!

By that as it may, Ys: Memories of Celceta is the quintessential action RPG experience that any fan of the genre should not sleep on, and hardcore fans should dive into right away. Again because the game is dated there were of course some design flaws in polygon count but honestly, once you start hacking and slashing your way through those visual issues no longer become the center of attention.

Honey's Pros:

  • Customizable waypoints to make traveling much easier.
  • Incredible soundtrack as always.
  • Controls and gameplay have been tweaked to make everything feel smoother.
  • Framerate options are a huge plus, especially when fully unlocked!
  • Time Attack and Boss Rush modes make their return in full form!
  • Leaderboard support is now available for those who want that high score prestige.
  • Full HD upgrade to give character sprites more detail.

Honey's Cons:

  • On a visual level there are some noticeable issues in level design but nothing too out of the ordinary.

Honey's Final Verdict:

Ys: Memories of Celceta is a must have action RPG title no matter how old it is. Its modern upgrades make it feel and look a lot sharper, with the challenging aspects of the gameplay having you come up with endless strategies to not die at all costs. We hope you found this review to be insightful, with enough information to give you the verdict on whether to buy this or not. Of course we recommend buying it!! Be sure to follow us on Twitter to stay up to date on all the latest gaming news from around the world, and of course hit us up on Twitch to see us play these reviewed titles live!

As always, for all things sweet, with news straight from Japan, be sure to keep it locked here on Honey’s Anime.

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Author: Rob "NualphaJPN" B.

A passionate fan of gaming, writing, journalism, anime, and philosophy. I've lived in Japan for many years and consider this place to be my permanent home. I love to travel around Japan and learn about the history and culture! Leave a comment if you enjoy my articles and watch me play on twitch.tv/honeysgaming ! Take care!

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