Set during an alternate-history French Revolution Lost Ark Gold, SteelRising players control an automaton with a selection of starting classes and weapon types, each with their own specialization and combat roles. Speaking of combat, SteelRising draws inspiration from the Dark Souls series in how it handles stamina-focused action and traversing the world, as well as how it treats its many powerful bosses, which are much more than bullet sponges. Players can also allocate stat points the way they like and use different sorts of weapons found throughout the game, making each playthrough a bit different. On top of that, iconic historic French characters can also be found in SteelRising, often tasking players with completing quests.
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Triangle Strategy is not dissimilar to Divinity: Original Sin in how it approaches combat and interactions between spells and environment, with an example being lightning spells cast on bodies of water extending the effect to nearby units. Triangle Strategy's difficulty levels make it a superb tile-based tactical game when it comes to battles, but it does offer more than that with a focus on its many characters, their unique abilities, and how all these elements come together when exploring the world or progressing through the story. Seemingly an ode to Final Fantasy Tactics, Triangle Strategy has a lot going on that makes it its own game, and it particularly shows in its map design and character interactions, with a voting mechanic that makes team-wide decisions all the more realistic. These can also change the ending of the game, alongside a morality system that makes each choice all the more impactful.
Among the most anticipated games of the year was Xenoblade Chronicles 3, a JRPG that dramatically surpasses the previous entries in the saga by making its characters more compelling and relatable, allowing players to build meaningful relationships between them. That's not to say that Xenoblade Chronicles 3 gets rid of all the elements that made its predecessor loved by fans, but it does make Aionios arguably the most beautiful world in the Lost Ark Gold buy series - rich in history, lore, and compelling struggles. What Monolith Soft achieved with this entry is a more mature take on the common themes of life and death, and the meaning players can find in each of them. Chiefly, Eunie's revelation that she remembers her past life and how she died forty years before the events of the game, which then acts as a springboard to unveil the truth behind Xenoblade Chronicles 3's Colonies and their Ranks.