While the move to the PlayStation 3 marked significant changes in both gameplay and visual presentation for the Atelier series, one area in which it remained comfortably consistent was the musical accompaniment to the action.
It’s definitely got that distinctive “Atelier sound” about it, thanks to Nakagawa’s love of traditional instrumentation and composition using an electronic wind instrument, but Atelier Rorona’s soundtrack also has a few elements that make it stand out as its own, immediately recognisable thing, too. So crank up that volume and let’s have a listen to some select tracks!
As our exploration of Atelier Rorona: The Alchemist of Arland comes to a close, it’s time to contemplate the game’s narrative component.
As we talked about when we looked at the game’s overall structure, Atelier Rorona: The Alchemist of Arland is somewhat more non-linear than previous installments in the series. There’s a core linear progression based around Rorona’s assignments, but the bulk of the narrative content comes from the wide variety of optional events you can enjoy with the ensemble cast.
Between all those events, you get a good sense of what sort of place Arland is — and who Rorona and her friends really are. So let’s take a closer look!
It’s a sad fact of life that we’ve seen a general rise in levels of anxiety and stress over the course of the last couple of decades. Or, at the very least, people are a lot more aware of it — and, crucially, willing to talk about it — now.
One way you can help develop your understanding of a condition such as anxiety is to engage with characters who display traits that you recognise; by seeing how that character acts from an outside perspective, you can perhaps get a bit of an understanding about how you feel about things — and why.
Lionela Heinze from Atelier Rorona: The Alchemist of Arland is a good example. While the specific cause of her anxiety may not be something we can directly relate to, the way her anxiety manifests itself is something I’m sure more than a few of us can recognise. So let’s take a closer look.
Ah, Rorona. My first Atelier girl; my entry point to the series; and a character who pretty much acts as a perfect representative of what Atelier is all about.
Last time we looked at the Atelier Arland trilogy here on MoeGamer (back when it was still actually a trilogy) we explored a number of the series’ secondary characters. But we never gave any love to the titular leading lady of Atelier Rorona: The Alchemist of Arland.
It’s time for the grand finale of our Atelier Rorona DX playthrough!
My “ambition” for this particular run has been to achieve the Adventurer ending, which requires you to get Rorona and Cordelia to level 50, then defeat the Iron Giant superboss in the depths of the Orthogalaxen dungeon.
Did I pull it off? Well, you’ll have to wait and see, won’t you?
Rorona’s trials and tribulations will be coming to an end within the next episode or so, but in the meantime there’s still plenty to be getting on with!
Specifically, as we’re getting towards the end of the game, I wanted to look at making some top-notch healing items. One of the best things you can make is an Elixir with the “Pepped Up” effect — this means that whenever Rorona’s HP drops below 50%, it automatically activates, saving you a turn and keeping your party up and running.
It’s a bit of a struggle and the final product isn’t the best it could be, but it’s not bad for a first attempt…
After an in-depth exploration of Night’s Domain, Rorona gets busy on some miscellaneous tasks before reaching the deadline for her latest assignment.
This time around, she discovers the truth about Lionela and her puppets; learning that someone isn’t all they might initially seem, and that they might sometimes need your help in ways you don’t expect is an important part of growing up, and a lesson that Rorona is quick to learn by virtue of her very nature — despite (or perhaps because of!) her upbringing by Astrid.
After this, there are just two more assignments to go before we complete this New Game Plus run! Will we achieve any or all of the endings I’ve been after…?
How tough is our girl Rorona? Only tough enough to fell both a dragon and a demon in a single expedition, that’s how tough!
In this week’s installment of our New Game Plus run through Atelier Rorona DX, we find ourselves exploring Night’s Domain, a dungeon at the northernmost tip of Arland that is somewhat… mysterious and otherworldly in nature. It’s full of some of the most valuable, high-quality ingredients in the game, though, so it’s well worth taking your time to explore… if you’re up to the challenge, that is!
Meanwhile, there’s a final bit of intrigue with Lionela… could she have finally found some peace in her life…?
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