Labyrinth of Refrain: Coven of Dusk - Review of the new title from Nippon Ichi

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Aina Martin
@ainamartin
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After entering the legend thanks to the saga of Disagea the study of Nippon Ichi returns to the fore by proposing a new original title. Labyrinth of Refrain: Coven of Dusk was initially released in 2016 su PlayStation Vita and moved on the following year PlayStation 4. Until this year, everything had remained confined to Japan, but thanks to the distribution of NIS America Western audiences were finally able to play the game in its final version. One of the main novelties of this release is that it made the adaptation also available on Steam e Nintendo Switch. Will the studio have found a new pearl in its myriad of publications or will this result as yet another product for its own sake?



Tractatus de Monstrum

The story tells the adventures of Dronya, the infamous twilight witch and her young assistant Luca. When both are convened by the mayor of Refrain to solve a chilling mystery, they will not be long in traveling to the remote village to offer their services. According to rumors, it seems that in recent times a sinister well had appeared out of nowhere, and that inside it was found a labyrinth that was fatal to anyone who tried to explore it. The only person who has come back to life from exploration has left behind a book now in the possession of our protagonist: the Tractatus de Monstrum. It is a sentient and devouring tome of souls, which thanks to its powers allows you to create and control magical puppets, turning them into warriors ready for battle. By sending our handful of expendable pawns in advance, we will be able, expedition to expedition, to get closer and closer to the origin of all evils.



Journey to the center of the world

The first thing we will find ourselves having to do is to assemble our personal coven. Every single character in the team will be fully customizable, starting from his class. We will have six types of different classes to choose from:

  • Aster Knight - A paladin who specializes in physical attacks.
  • Shinobushi - An assassin who specializes in stealth attacks.
  • Theatrical Star - A bard who specializes in support.
  • Marginal Maze - A spellcaster specializing in the use of magic.
  • Peer Fortress - An armored knight specialized in defense.
  • Mad raptor - A sniper specializing in ranged attacks.

Each of these will have classic values, such as that of Health Points for life and gods Donum Points regarding the use of spells. Furthermore, we will be able to structure them by choosing one nature which will favor certain statistics over others. During its progression, the assigned growth method will be equally important. With the Natural we will get adequate advancement for the chosen class. Through Flat we will have a more heterogeneous one, while on the contrary, with the Sharp we will only increase some features in a more immoderate way. In the creation it is also possible to choose the inclination in the fight. stance is the basic choice in order not to unbalance the relationship, while Sun favors defense e Moon the attack. One of the last peculiarities arrived at the end, is that of being able to choose a lucky number which will affect the fate of the puppet in a completely fortuitous and random way. Once the creation is finished, we will be ready to take on the dungeon.



Each mission will continue until we are satisfied with the progress made in the excursion or until our eventual death. Going back we will report to the witch and we can repair the limbs of our wounded. Collecting enough What we will be able to stipulate one of the features Witch Petition to help us continue our research. As we progress inside the labyrinth we will get closer and closer to the truth, finding the pages of our book and understanding more and more the dynamics that led to the mysterious apparition.


To conclude

Labyrinth of Refrain: Coven of Dusk it is a good product for the genre it belongs to. We can say that despite the fairly classic interface of the title, the rest is still quite anomalous in itself. Leaving aside the long-winded dialogues of which it is full, we must admit that within the story we will find rather mature and substantially different themes compared to other similar products seen previously. Despite this, however, the plot will remain rather linear and tedious, without too many interesting implications within it.


After all, the gaming experience is well structured, providing a flawless game system. The repetitiveness of the levels and of the enemies themselves will be quite exhausting in the long run, making the various games not too exciting in themselves and locking us in an infinite circle and without a visible progression. Fortunately the characters featured drawn by Takehito Harada they are all well characterized and perfectly cut out their space inside (also thanks to the excellent work of dubbing). As always, however, the game will be purely localized in English, leaving a slice of users out of the already lacking public niche. Basically we are talking about a title which we recommend the purchase only and exclusively to lovers of dungeon crawlers and Japanese role-playing games.


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