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The Hidden Side Of Octopath Traveler's Combat

With the release of the Square Enix JRPG on Nintendo Switch, Mike Mahardy takes a deep dive into the game's combat, and the various games that inspired it.

With eight playable protagonists and eight separate storylines that you can take part in during a single playthrough, Nintendo Switch's new RPG Octopath Traveler is a lot to digest. It jumps from one adventure to the next, switching between revenge stories and coming-of-age tales at a moment's notice. It's a lot to balance.

So going into the game, Mike Mahardy had high expectations for the writing--the presentation and dialogue holding all of the stories together. The narrative glue, as he calls it in the video above. But, as he spent more and more time with the JRPG, he found that narrative glue not in the traditional narrative, but in the game's combat.

In the video above, Mike explores the various ways Octopath Traveler uses its combat to tell its story. Not only does it supplement its written narrative with the actions characters take in battle, but also helps to pull you through several lengthy adventures that otherwise run the risk of outstaying their welcome.

Any game can tell a story through exposition. It takes a special title to tell that story through gameplay. For more, check out our Octopath Traveler review, in which Peter Brown gave the game an 8/10 and said, "The promise of new jobs, exciting boss fights, and powerful gear will inspire you to poke around every corner, and there are no shortage of discoveries to strive for."