Review: Infinite Undiscovery

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With Role Playing Games slowly on the rise on microsofts 360, it wasn’t really a surprise when Square Enix announced they would be making games themselves for the Xbox.  What was surprising though, was the first of the three announced titles, Infinite Undiscovery (The others being ‘The Last Remnant’ and ‘Star Ocean – The Last Hope’) came about with very little information, even up to the point of its impending release.  All we really knew was that it would be and ‘Action-RPG’ with a large cast of characters.

But has it been worth the wait?  Or was Infinite Discovery something that was meant to be left under the radar?

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Believe it or not, or these characters join your party at some point!

The story behind Infinite Undiscovery is all based around the Moon.  People born under certain moon phases are gifted with the ability to cast spells and increased power, thanks to special ‘Lunaglyphs’.
Unfortunately, the moon has been chained to the Earth by a group called ‘The Order of the Chains’, because of this, there has been increased monster activity and the flow of power has been disrupted.

Opposing the Order of the Chains is ‘Sigmund the Liberator’, a hero to the people, who has the power to cut the chains and restore the world.  But rather then follow Sigmund, you are placed in the boots of Capell, a musician who happens to look just like Sigmund, which gets him caught up in many conflicts.

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As far as gameplay stands, Infinite Undiscovery stands up fairly well.  Tapping on the A button with allow you dish out your standard combo, while tapping B at any point will unleash a charge attack, (Very much like Dynasty Warriors) later on you will learn skills, which can be activated by holding down A or B, giving you an extra hand in battles.
Your team mates, who are all controlled by the computer will fight depending on how you set them to act.  Pressing up or down on the D-Pad will cycle through the commands and have them sit back, fight the enemy your targeting are just go all out.
If you like, you can hold the Right Bumper and press the corresponding button to select one of your partners, allowing you to use a few abilities of theirs.  Aya for example, can be manually aimed to fire her arrows at a specific target, including explosive barrels.

The graphics for the game are pretty well-done.  The characters especially are well detailed, with costumes, armour and other items a character might have on them done very well, helping define everyone and make them stand out.
The world itself, while nothing extraordinary, does the job well enough, considering the large environments that you will find yourself trekking through.
The monsters themselves are mixed, you will see a number of palette swaps for enemies, along with some generic designs, but there are some that definitely stand out.

The voice acting is done quite well too, the main characters each have a voice that suits them well, getting the job done in most scenes (When they are used) but other characters can seem rather flat, or over the top, especially the NPC’s.
The music doesn’t get in the way of things, the melodies you hear fit the areas well enough, along with the mood for the battles, but never really stands out.

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The pace of gameplay is changed when you have to carry Aya, as you are unable to defend yourself.

Unfortunately, while the game does have some good ideas, it has a number of flaws too.  Many of which stop it from being a great game, instead placing it in the decent area.
The biggest issue is the lack of voices.  While each main character has a voice actor, there are many instances where dialogue will go by and the characters act the scene out, but the voices wont be present.  Almost as if they forgot to record half the script.

While its not a bad thing that you only control Capell directly, it is disappointing that you cant control other party members, as they all seem to have set combos prepared.  Along with that, its difficult to remember what each of the ‘assist’ skills is meant to do, as the names for many are so vague that if forces you to check the menu screen for the skill description.

Speaking of the menu, action will not stop when you enter the menu screen, so you will have to make sure your clear of enemies before healing up.  While this works well on multiplayer games. (Such as Phantasy Star Online) But for an RPG, it seems a bit odd that the menu doesn’t pause the game itself.

Finally, while the areas can be large and well laid-out, a lot of the time, they are very empty, with only a handful of enemies.  And sometimes areas can be so long and winding, that its so easy to get lost without any clear indication of where to go.

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In all Infinite Undiscovery seems to have aimed a little too high.  Maybe its because of the Sqaure Enix name in the title, but I really expected a lot more from this game.  Lets hope that The Last Remnant is more promising.

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