E3 06: Yggdra Union Impressions

Much like the lime and the coconut, Atlus seeks to combine strategy RPG gameplay and card-battling together to delicious effect.

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LOS ANGELES--The Game Boy Advance still has some life left in it, of the strategy RPG type in particular. Yggdra Union is a hybrid, taking the strategy template and throwing in a dash of card-battling mechanics to liven things up a bit. The playable version at Atlus' E3 booth was still in Japanese, but we were still able to glean some details about this handheld title.

The world has a whimsical, exaggerated anime style that will be familiar to those who have played Riviera: The Promised Land, as the artwork was done by the same team. Before battle, the game shows a zoomed-out view of the world map, the location of your character, and the direction of enemy approach. It then cuts to the battle map itself, where your characters will go through the requisite story sequence as they settle into place. Once all the chatting is done, you'll be able to choose the characters you want to participate in battle, as well as the cards you want them to use. Once that's finished, you'll be able to get in and cut up some enemies.

The game makes use of the Advance Wars sort of graphical style when units actually interact with each other, popping up a screen that shows a profile of the fighting sprites on opposing sides with a jagged line dividing them. A given side can have a number of units fighting at once as well. We'll be interested to get our hands on a localized version so we don't have to shift through the madness of hundreds of Japanese cards. Yggdra Union is scheduled to come out in late 2006, so keep your eyes on this gamespace for updated information.

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