I’ve been looking forward to Resonance of Fate for a while and I finally got the chance to get some hands-on time with the title when a demo for it was released on the Japanese PSN yesterday. (Note: If you want to snag it and give it a try, it’s called End of Eternity in Japan.)
As soon as you start the demo you’re thrown into battle. When you select “Newcomer Mode” from the menu I assume things are pretty darn easy, but I needed that, since I can’t read Japanese and the battle system is something new. Thankfully there were on-screen prompts for the buttons in this mode, and those are universal.
The action stays constant during battle, and you can run around freely, until you set up the path you want to run. By hitting the Square button, you’ll pause battle and ignite a glowing, dotted line that you can rotate around. This is the path your character will run and, during the course of running that path, will execute different attacks based on the buttons you press.
Each character gets a turn, and the attacks from both sides play out much like a turn-based battle. You can’t act while being attacked and can’t freely control your character while running the path you decide on, besides setting off attacks during the trek.
Once you choose the path, you initiate by hitting the square button, then, when your character begins moving, hit the square button again and they will leap into the air. Button prompts appear on the screen (in this case, only the X button) and you have a certain amount of time to hit those. Each time you do, the character will go through a Matrix-style gunfire attack sequence. It seems that the earlier in the run you leap into the air, the more attacks you can initiate. Eventually, your character lands at their final destination and hopefully the enemy is damaged.
Battle continues in a turn-based format, while allowing you to freely run around and position yourself where you want to be before you set your defined path across the battlefield. After the battle is over, you can freely run around that battlefield picking up any barrels (chests) you find. You also acquire items, gold and experience from the battle, as usual.
After the first battle, I noticed the map in the upper right. It contained an area made up of six or seven segments, or battlefields. I proceeded to the next one and was met with another battle. This sequence of events continued until the final room, where you’re presented with a boss fight. Once you clear the boss, there’s a short story sequence, then the demo comes to its conclusion.
There are many things I didn’t quite understand, including how to use healing items. Thankfully in the “Newcomer Mode” you never die. Also, when you’re defining paths for each character, if it crosses the path a previously used character made, they highlight in blue. I’m pretty sure this is for a special attack or initiates a special condition that may help you in battle, but I couldn’t figure out what it was.
The visuals were amazing, and the characters moved around fluidly with zero frame rate issues. There is a wealth of battles in this demo, although I do wish they allowed you to mess around with some of the customization options, as well.
I really enjoyed the demo, although I’m sure I’d enjoy it more if I actually knew what was going on and could perform better in battle. That likely won’t come until I get some playtime with an English version of the game. Needless to say, this demo did nothing but enhance my anticipation for this upcoming RPG from the masterminds at tri-Ace. You can pick up the demo if you have a Japanese PSN account or a Japanese Xbox Live Gold account.