New details and screenshots surface regarding time and weather factors, “LP”, characters (both new and previously introduced), notable locations, and battle systems for the upcoming Atelier Sophie.
The weather in Atelier Sophie changes over time, and as you play you’ll see different patterns in the daily lives of people depending on the time of day and/or weather.
Some events only occur at certain times, while weather can effect other things – an example being that either night or stormy weather can bring forth more monsters. It’s for this reason that you must pay attention to your environment as a safe place in normal conditions might not be safe in others.
It’s also true that time of day and weather will have an effect on the people you see and gathering material you find; conditions must be just right to come across someone or something important.
If you spend too much time hunting for items and battling however, Sophie and the others will slowly get tired – losing “LP”. If your “LP” goes down enough it’ll lower Sophie and her friends’ stats, however the more you continue your adventure the better material you can get. As such, it might be worth the risk at times – but it’s best that you always keep an eye on your status.
“Oh goodness, your skill as an alchemist has progressed quite a bit hasn’t it Sophie.”
In the city of Kirchen Bell there’s a shop run by a lonely gentleman in his early fifties named Horst. During the day his shop is run as a cafe, but at night it’s run as a bar. Sophie is able to visit this establishment in order to find work, or to listen to rumors and/or find leads that might help her on her way.
Taking work requests from villagers can range from hunting down monsters to gathering up items, and the reward will often reflect how well/quickly you finished the request. There are also special promotion requests that when completed will allow you take on more difficult requests, so there’s room to grow for sure.
The cafe owner will not only give you requests however, but he’ll also go as far as to tell you about rumors. Rumors can consist of tips along the lines of “I heard about a mysterious monster” or “you can find lots of this material here” – and while it costs money to hear rumors, they can lead to finding new places (which may then lead to find a wealth of new materials).
“When you say ‘old’ it merely means that something has been around for a long time. Just as this shop has carved itself into time.”
Next we have some more new charcter information, starting with a previously unannounced character named Harol Simens. Harol is in his mid-twenties and is employed as a watch craftsman – following in the footsteps of his father who originally owned the watch shop he now works out of. Unlike his father however, Harol’s passion lies in crafting and selling guns.
Normally a very cynical character with a blunt personality, Harol has a soft spot for taking care of Sophie – who he’s known for a very long time.
“Yes, I’m fine. It seems Ms. Sophie is quite eager so I guess I’ll put in some effort too.”
Last up with regards to character information is a little more on Corneria (who we’ve introduced before). It has been revealed that Corneria’s bulk goods store also lies in Kirchen Bell, and that her store was opened not only as a means to find her father but to help her find fame as well.
Speaking of characters, let’s take a look at how they work in battle.
Atelier Sophie introduces the “Logical Turn Battle” system, which requires you to select the actions for your entire party beforehand and then watch as they take their turns in real time. Once you’ve decided on an action for a character, you won’t be able to change it until it’s completed – so you’ll need to think ahead to win and not get caught off-guard.
This gauge (located on the left side of the screen in-game) indicates the order of action for the characters and their chosen movement. The order of action is determined by the character’s speed and the kind of action they are attempting; when each character has finished their chosen action, a new turn will start allowing you to make new selections and start the process over again.
During battles you’ll also get to select “Stances” – there are some that are good for offense and some that are good for defense. These stances come with various effects of their own, such as adding follow-up attacks to other characters or defending them from hits – and the “Defense Stance” in particular will provide your entire group with some form of “auto-cover” ability.
In addition, each character will have their own set of skills they can use in battle – whether it be for dealing damage to a monster or strengthening other party members. There are a variety of skills out there, but each and every skill will cost MP to use.
Aside from skills, characters can also use items; but Sophie is the only one that can use all of the various items. Depending on which characters you’re using and the items they are able to use, your item usage may even have an effect on your strategy while in battle – so again, think ahead.
With regards to item restrictions it has been noted that Oskar can use attack items, recovery items, and food items – though Monika has only been revealed to use food items so far (she loves her sweets!).
That’s all for now, but we’re sure you’ll be hearing more about Atelier Sophie: Alchemist of the Mysterious Book in the near future – especially seeing as how we’re just under two months from the Japanese release date of September 25th.