Created by YummyYummyTummy and released last year as initially two separate games in the form of Fallen Legion Sins of an Empire and Fallen Legion: Flames of Rebellion and then combined on Steam as Fallen Legion+, Fallen Legion has now made its way onto the Nintendo Switch as Fallen Legion: Rise to Glory with a couple key new features separating it from its former incarnations to now give you the definitive experience when it comes to playing this amazing game now giving you the opportunity to play both Legatus Leandur and Octavia Cecille’s stories as both fight for their rights to lead their countries.
The visual flair of the game is similar to that of Dragon’s Crown and Odin Sphere with a gameplay execution in the leagues of Valkyrie Profile (or if you want a similar switch title to compare this to you could say Has Been Heroes although I personally detested that game) which means that it’s a perfect blend of both hack and slash and RPG that’ll give fans of both a blast with the Fallen Legion series, whether it be for extended gameplay or in short bursts. The added benefit of having of both games, getting the full story, will be an extra bonus when it comes to fully understanding the world of Fenumia, and determining who the real enemies are. Animations are sharp and crisp and incredibly fluid.
The story’s campaign offering gives you an opposing perspective on the political upheaval that is taking place in the fantasy world of Fenumia based on which character you play as. On one side of the conflict, you can play as Princess Cecille, the young princess on a journey of ascending to the throne. This story follows her journey to power in an attempt to bring peace to her empire (Sins of an Empire). The other campaign of the story gives you control of Legatus Laendur, a military commander on a quest to overthrow the royal family. His motivation and purpose unfold as the story progresses offering a deep and rewarding experience for the player. The two stories are designed to compliment each other and offer a rich, fulfilling world for players to explore. The story is truly the star of this ARPG, with many well thought-out moments offered in both campaigns. As the player, you will have to make some pretty tough choices in a matter of seconds that have kingdom altering impact on the story. This mechanic of split-second decision making was one of the elements really kept the story engaging as I progressed through both campaigns.
Often I would try as much as possible to go back and forth between the storylines, ensuring I kept up equally with both sides of the conflict. Doing as much immediately began to reveal some flaws that while minor are still worth noting, primarily on the side of Flames of Rebellion arc. The flaw in question is that there actually wasn’t much story to speak of in terms of what was going on and I think Leandur was attempting to catch up with Octavia to stop her from reaching the capital, but there was such an overflow of information in these cutscenes that it may honestly cause players to lose track of the overarching plot Fallen Legion is trying to convey. It’s unfortunate because clearly, the world of Fallen Legion is, at least in its intention, a rich one. There’s a lot going on in terms of politics and intrigue, as well as an interesting royal and gentry hierarchy that would make for great filler in future titles.
In terms of combat, there’s no variety between Cecille and Leandur. The gameplay/combat is a true mix of fast-paced linked attacks, timed blocking and spell casting (all mapped to a face button) coupled with the ability to control up to four characters at once, Legion can feel very action-packed, intense and fun. There were several times in my playthrough when I felt like I was waiting around for an ability to charge or was awkwardly standing around waiting for an enemy to attack. If it was a turn-based system it would make sense but in this real-time ARPG the pacing of combat felt off. Even with its surface level simplicity, Fallen Legion as a whole has done a great job of creating a rather complex combat system under the surface. With everything from unique tributes (your party characters), a wide range of spells, relics that temporarily buff combat encounters and the aforementioned linked attacks, there is a lot of ways to bring your foes down. The systems are all well thought out and, once you understand their basic function, work really well together. When the system was firing on all cylinders it was a blast to play but as with the story delivery at times, there were some very off pace moments that made things feel a bit clunky.
For those who are curious, here are the new features as listed below:
Fallen Legion: Rise to Glory is the definitive version of the Fallen Legion saga.
• Contains both Fallen Legion: Sins of an Empire and Fallen Legion: Flames of Rebellion.
• Five additional playable characters made for Nintendo Switch.
• New story branches, levels, and brutal boss fights.
• Japanese voiceovers starring Shizuka Ishikami as Cecille, Hidenori Takahashi as Laendur, Ai Kakuma as Antoinette, and Kengo Kawanishi as the Grimoire.
• Remixed battles when playing New Game+ and One Life Mode,
• Supports Nintendo Switch video capture.
• Crossover character support – characters unlocked in Flames of Rebellion can be used in Sins of an Empire (and vice-versa) when playing New Game+ or One Life Mode!
All in all, I like things that are intuitive. I also like some variety in my hack and slash, otherwise, things tend to get boring and at the end of the day, I enjoyed Fallen Legion: Rise to Glory. If you are someone who loves deep storytelling, wonderful world development and fresh perspectives in writing Fallen Legion is something that will most likely perk your interest and you will love. If, on the other hand, ARPGs like this aren’t your thing and you prefer smooth gaming mechanics that trump story then you will most likely become frustrated with some of the odd mechanical issues that legion has. I for one am not bothered by those small issues and greatly recommend this game. It’s fully worth the price of admission and you get two full games and plenty of content making this the definitive way to go with this game! Fallen Legion: Rise to Glory is Kasanova Approved!
Note: A Nintendo Switch code was provided by NIS America for review