Etrian Odyssey 10th Anniversary illustration

Etrian Odyssey Series Celebrates its 10th Anniversary

2017 marks the 10th anniversary of Atlus’s dungeon crawling RPG series Etrian Odyssey. Series character designer Yuji Himukai tweeted a gorgeous illustration to commemorate the milestone featuring the many party classes found throughout the series. Originally released on January 18, 2007 on Nintendo DS, Etrian Odyssey provided a new twist on the dungeon crawler format with dual screen information display and map drawing with a touch screen. Powerful enemies roaming the labyrinths called F.O.E. add tension to the exploration, as these monsters can still walk around on the map and enter your on-going battle against a different enemy should you attempt to escape their pursuit. The series’ lead composer is Yuzo Koshiro, a name that might sound familiar to long-time SEGA fans, as he worked on the soundtrack for the Streets of Rage games and The Revenge of Shinobi.

The series comprise of numbered main entries: I-III on Nintendo DS and IV and V on Nintendo 3DS. There’s no need to play each entry in order if you are a newcomer, although there is some common lore to learn such as the Yggdrasil Tree. Each sequel adds additional features to the base formula, such as the concept of sub-classes (learning new abilities from another class) and an expansive world to explore outside of dungeons. The games have also become quite accessible over time. For example players can change the difficulty at any time in Etrian Odyssey IV and the penalties toward adjusting your character’s stats and sub-class are lower.

Etrian Odyssey Untold 1 and 2 on 3DS are remakes of Etrian Odyssey I and II respectfully, with visual and gameplay enhancements found in EOIV. They offer fans a traditional story mode using established characters and fixed character classes. Additionally, a classic mode modeled after the original gameplay format is an option.

Two major spinoffs were made in the series thus far. Etrian Mystery Dungeon, is a crossover with Spike Chunsoft’s Mystery Dungeon series of rogue-like RPGs. The other is Persona Q, which uses the gameplay formula of the Etrian Odyssey series, but is set in the Persona universe.

The latest release in the series is Etrian Odyssey V, which was released August 4th 2016 in Japan. No localization for the game is announced for the West, but 2017 remains a fairly active year for 3DS.

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