It's a nice JRPG experience.
Atelier Totori's gameplay focuses a lot on doing hunting,fetch and synthesis quests.You have what's called an 'adventurer's license' and you have roughly 4 years to earn a diamond ranking for your adventurer license.You increase your ranking by earning license points from doing quests and doing various other things such as defeating a certain number of monsters or by defeating a certain number of a certain type of monster or just by traveling around the world map for a certain number of days and you can even earn license points by fleeing battles a certain number of times or traveling to new locations or by leveling up to certain levels.The game's menu even has a list of many different tasks you can do to earn license points,however after you complete a task you can't earn points by redoing that task.Some tasks are not listed either.
Moving around the world map uses up valuable days,so you need to plan your travels carefully,so you can make sure you're traveling to areas that will provide opportunities to earn license points.Reaching diamond ranking isn't that difficult,it's just time consuming and it's what you'll spend most of your game time doing.
The other things you can do is trying to find out what happened to Totori's mother(who went missing years ago and is believed to be dead but Totori still hasn't given up hope)and you can try to increase friendships with certain party members by having them in your party and you can try to find new characters who you can add to your party and you can try to activate a flag for certain characters which will allow you to see an ending which relates to the character whom you activated a flag for and to activate their flag you have to build up your friendship with them and initiate certain scenes with that character by doing certain things or being in a certain place at a certain time.You can even try to do other things such as organizing a swimsuit contest which will require you to do certain things,but you'll get some nice rewards such as a Gold trophy and you'll get to see the female characters in revealing bikini tops and some of the female characters are quite cute and busty and the swimsuit festival is funny to watch because of what certain characters say during it.The game also has boss fights,which are all optional,but will reward you with lots of license points and you'll need to beat certain bosses if you want the normal,true or character endings.
The story for the game has an emotional drive,because Totori's mother disappeared years ago and Totori's older sister named Cecilia has given up hope their mother is alive and you can see how Cecilia has become very protective of Totori and doesn't like Totori being an adventurer like their mother was.Cecilia likes to do a more simple job of working at the store.However,Cecilia is not a playable character unless you purchase her as DLC.There's other characters who have interesting characteristics such as a warrior girl named Melvia who's very strong and confident and she's an experienced adventurer and joins Totori(is a playable character).There's a couple of female characters who have attitude(they can be mean or argumentative)but it's funny to watch and brightens up the mood a bit and one of them is a playable character.There's also a few male characters(some of which are playable)and at least one of them is a romantic interest to one of the female characters.Even the role Totori's/Cecilia's father play is done very well.There's also some characters from Atelier Rorona and other Gust games in this game.
The battle system for the game is old-fashioned turn-based.However,it's possible to have more turns than your enemy by increasing your speed stat(similar to what Final Fantasy X's battle system has).The game uses a level 1-50 leveling up system and as your character reach certain levels,they'll learn new combat skills(which require MP).Totori's synthesis skills can also level up(which will allow her to create better items)and synthesis is needed for certain quests and you can create weapons/armor through synthesis at weapon's stores,but the materials needed to create those weapons is created through alchemy and you'll need to find/buy those items/materials when you travel around the world/defeat monsters so you can use them to create certain materials for stronger weapons/armor through alchemy.You can also create powerful weapons such as bombs(each bomb can be used once)and you can create elixirs using alchemy.
The graphics for the game are beautiful in a charming,colorful type of way.I love the way the beautiful blue lakes/rivers look when they're beside beautiful,lush,green countryside.There's also some nice forest areas,as well as desert and some cute towns with people you can talk to.I like how when you're on an elevated area and you'll get a view of beautiful countryside and seaside or blue rivers/lakes.I also like how the graphics have a cel-shaded style to them,they look smooth and lovely.The game also has visual novel style scenes to give it a nice traditional feel at times,and the game also has beautiful,cel-shaded cutscenes.
I always use Japanese voice acting when it's available for a game(which it is with Atelier Totori)and the voice acting for the game is meh,but the music can be very relaxing at times or can have a mysterious feel to it(I can't explain it with words)that perhaps suggests you're on a dangerous journey.
Overall,I found Atelier Totori to be a nice JRPG experience,although it's frustrating how you can so easily get the bad ending without a guide.