Author Topic: Inazuma Eleven Impressions  (Read 1374 times)

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Offline NWR_Karlie

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Inazuma Eleven Impressions
« on: March 09, 2011, 01:59:32 PM »

Stand up, stand up if you love Level-5 RPGs.

http://www.nintendoworldreport.com/impressions/25616

Inazuma Eleven is a slightly surreal experience due to the combination of differing themes and genres that aren't often seen together. Depending on what you take from the game or what you are most familiar with, it can seem to be everything from an RPG to Championship Manager. Not that I've played the latter, mind you, and it is of note that my football knowledge is extremely limited.

The story and presentation is clearly that of an RPG. You walk around the school and grounds finding treasure chests, running into random battles, following the development of the characters and storyline, gaining experience and leveling up, training to increase stats, and teaching moves to characters both through paying for them in training areas and by picking up teaching manuals. Practically every element of an RPG you could think of including randomly generated dungeons.

The game begins with several video cutscenes, but you see less of these as you progress. The videos are in an animated style, and it is a little strange to see these characters given English names and voices. There is also significant voice acting for text-based sections.

In terms of football matches, there are 4-a-side games that you encounter in random battles and training, which are around a minute long, and full-sized matches with a full team that must be completed to progress in the story, which are around five minutes long. Sometimes you have to complete a match in a particular way to be able to win and progress with the story. Characters are controlled one at a time by using the stylus to drag and create a path or tapping to shoot. The rest of your team will run around on their own, and you can direct several of them in quick succession to chase after the ball when you are defending. When trying to score, it is more important to keep passing the ball so you meet the opposing players less often.

When two players do meet, it becomes very much like one turn of an RPG battle. There is a choice of two standard moves with different attributes that can be used anytime and any special moves that you have acquired, which use up Technique Points (TP). These duels can occur between one or many players and the more players on your side of the duel, meaning they are near an oppponent, the higher your chance of winning and gaining possession of the ball. The outcome of the duel depends on the move chosen and player stats, as well as elemental type, of which there are four. These work in a rock-paper-scissors fashion, where air beats earth, earth beats fire, fire beats wood, and wood beats air. When special moves are used, you get the fullly animated, physically impossible depiction from the character. It's extremely out of place in a football match, and shows how integrated the RPG mechanic is.

In a full match, there are various options such as changing player formation, substituting players - handy when your players are drained of HP or TP, and there is half time and full time. It is important to direct your players and move the ball towards to goal quickly while avoiding opponents and choosing the right moves when you do meet. It's more strategy gameplay than arcade-style sport. Often, the story leads your team to learn a particular move that is required against the opposing team and that's the only move that will get past their defense successfully.

The 4-a-side games use your current story mode party, who walk around in a group following you much like an RPG party. Here the object is simply to score a goal first or gain possession of the ball. Winning a random battle consisting of such a game gives you experience and friendship points.

Overall, I feel half-in, half-out on this title. On one hand, I have no interest in football or real time strategy, making things difficult since it took me four gameplay hours to realise I could substitute players. However, the completionist feel of the RPG side pushes things along and at times, it can be quite exciting. It is certainly a very good game, and could be one of the year's best releases for DS, at least in Europe.


Offline Razorkid

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Re: Inazuma Eleven Impressions
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2011, 03:03:14 PM »
This is the only game that I'd be interested in playing based on international football. I love games based on sports where the actual sport is only a small part of the gameplay.
"All the world is blind to my passing..."

Re: Inazuma Eleven Impressions
« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2011, 04:14:00 PM »
I'm very interested in this game... Level-5 is quickly becoming one my favorite developers. Any news on the European release date or (God forbid) an American release?

Offline MegaByte

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Re: Inazuma Eleven Impressions
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2011, 04:27:25 PM »
The European release date was 28 Jan. There's no word on an NA release, but you can always import.
Aaron Kaluszka
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Offline pololmejor

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Re: Inazuma Eleven Impressions
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2011, 07:29:08 PM »
ah... This look's so Professor Laytonish. Clayton's Right [heh Clayton] Level 5 is becoming my next Rareware. *sigh* Even saying that name just makes me terribly sad.

Re: Inazuma Eleven Impressions
« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2011, 08:30:14 PM »
The European release date was 28 Jan. There's no word on an NA release, but you can always import.

Apparently that release date was delayed in a very odd way... listen to intrepid UK correspondent Greg Leahy's explanation in episode #230 of Radio Free Nintendo for his eloquent take on the situation (that's where I first heard this news). Supposedly some copies made it onto the market in error... but they will officially release it later to coincide with the anime release or somesuch.