The Alchemist Code Review and Personal Impressions
The Alchemist Code is a free to play, with in-app purchases, SRPG for mobile devices. It was developed and released by Gumi in 2016 for Japan. The global version came in November 2017 as a replacement of their other SRPG title - Phantom of the Kill, due to active players' database was dropping fast.
Shortly after logging to the game, the players will witness a battle between two former friends - Logi and Dias.(I am little bored to see this 'Naruto-Sasuke' storyline over and over in most JRPGS I have tried but can say it works quite good towards decent story end). To stop them from killing each other, Agatha sacrifices herself standing between their attacks.
After that we get a well made, anime intro, that get us deeper in the story of The Alchemist Code. In this world the alchemy exists. Its frequent use in warfare made it considered as Forbidden Art and seven nations united to suppress it. It was peaceful till one of them started using it again and made the other 6 raging against it.
Our journey starts before the battle between Logi and Dias, giving us their past and the events that gave them alchemist powers and turn them against each other.
This title is anime style SRPG, suitable for fans of Fantasy War and Ogre Tactics or these who miss Phantom of the Kill. It brings different storyline, but its gameplay is pretty much same as the last title mentioned.
Players can build team of four heroes, 2 substitutes(that replace the first 2 of the main 4 whenever they die during adventure) and 1 friend mercenary for running story or event quests. The strong strategic point in this game comes from that all these units have elemental type and variety of skills that matters in combats. Also the battle offers backside attacks that requires unit's movement plan. The combat itself is a turn based with grid movement through 3D terrain.
The battle screen offers character turn bar on the top left that helps our actions planning. Also we are able to change the angle, speed up the combat or even auto play it.
For finishing the gameplay I will say this is pretty much farm&grind SRPG due to 2 reasons:
- characters level cannot exceed your current account level
- you will need a lot materials to craft equips and get advanced job for your units
Characters and Collaborations
More than 60 heroes are available through gacha system and still their number is raising. Gumi loves to bring anime and characters from their other titles into their games with collaboration events. Considering this game's name, it is not a surprise that at this moment you can get heroes and villains from Full Metal Alchemist anime.
You raise your units' stats by leveling or equipping them with gears. However the first is limited by their rank(up to 5 stars through evolution system),their limit brake point and your account level that I mentioned before.
Strong side of this game is the job tree that every unit has. Players can choose between various advanced jobs for every character and customize their party build till they make the most desired one.
In Arena we can fight with team of 3 characters against other player's team of 3. We can select the player we want to fight and the battles are offline.
PVP ranked and friendly matches unlock when your account reach 85 level. From the information I could gather from the official site it was added this October and these battles are online. Not many mobile games can offer both offline and online pvp modes.
The last multiplayer option the game can offer is to set our strongest character and team with other players in co-op missions real time.
There are no guilds in the game at this moment.
In app purchases:
The game currency is gems. Milestone tasks, special task missions, daily and event login bonuses give us enough to use the gacha system for getting high rank units and gears. However there is different between these gems and the ones we get with real money. Some quite good gachas use paid gems. Cannot really blame the developers here since the money spent support the existence of a game.
There is no VIP system to give gap between freebies and these who spend money.
Music and Graphics:
Among the names of artists and composers I must say The Alchemist Code gives some really interesting ones like:
Taku Aizawa - senior producer who is involved with Final Fantasy: Brave Exivius project
Shinya Tanaka - the composer who made the OST to the game. He works with famous singer Sting and also is involved in the video games Gungnir, Yggdra Union: We'll Never Fight Alone, Baroque, Hexyz Force.
Shoji Kawamori - he did the opening animation of the game. Famous for creating the design for every variable fighter in the Macross anime series. Creator of the Last hope and 'Nobunaga The Fool' animes.
The 2D characters graphics are quite good. But that cannot be said for the 3D CGI that the combat engine uses. Its low resulution makes them less detailed and cannot get my sympathy.
The music is very good, especially the track with the Japanese name of the game 'For Whom the Alchemist Exists' and the boss fight themes.
For conclusion this title is worth to try for these who are interested in SRPGs and tactics series thou I must admit this game is huge battery drainer, or at least for my Lenovo Vibe Shot Z90. Also you can save your data by logging via Facebook, so nothing will be lost if you delete game the and make return in the future.
Here are my personal game ratings:
Story: 4,5 from 5 stars
Graphics : 4,3 from 5 stars
Gameplay: 4,6 from 5 stars
Music: 4,6 from 5 stars
Community and events : 4,5 from 5 stars
Rating: 4,5 stars