My pre-ordered copy of Atelier Meruru arrived last night. With it, the trilogy is complete and the three games are sitting on my shelve. Sadly, I haven't had the time or real motivation to start them due to my fighting-game time and Skyrim and Final Fantasy XIII-2 taking all my single-player gaming time in the last months. But I'm really happy about owning such a rare trilogy. I usually talk to friends who are hardcore gamers like me and they don't even know the franchise exists, I find that extremely funny but sad because though I haven't played them myself, I'm sure they're very good and deserve more attention from the industry.
The final chapter of the Atelier trilogy has Princess Merurulince Red Arls, or simply Meruru as the main protagonist. She's a spoiled and stubborn girl with a high-pitched Japanese voice of those that some love and some hate, like Vanille or Rikku, who decides to become an alchemist and save the world and all that blah blah. There are returning characters from the previous two games like Rorona and Totori themselves and newcomers as well. I've read both good and bad reviews about it but the bad ones usually seem to be written by ignorant idiots who have Call of Duty as the standard for a "good game". Now, I know the Atelier trilogy is not the best ever and is very inferior to others out there, like Final Fantasy, Xenoblade and probably even Eternal Sonata, but the reasons why the game is negatively criticized by many reviewers are laughable at best.
I'd really, really like to get into the series but right now, Virtua Fighter 5:FS, Halo Reach and yes, Skyrim and Final Fantasy XIII-2 are still taking up all my gaming time. And now that I got a Vita I'll probably have even LESS to dedicate to Atelier. But I'm trying hard to be done at least with XIII-2 and Elder Scrolls to finally start Rorona. The main reason why I haven't just sat down with it is that I read all over the place that the three games in the franchise require a deep understanding of the alchemy mechanics, so it's not simply running around with the lolitas and their parties killing monsters and bosses. The games are actually about completing missions with weird alchemy recipes and finding rare ingredients all over the place. It sounds very interesting but to be honest, I simply won't play them if I'm not going to dedicate entirely on them. I mean, it's not like this is Lollipop Chainsaw or one of those other recent games where people just mash combos until the missions are done.
But anyway, the games are there and with Meruru, I have yet another JRPG sitting around that I haven't touched at all. My backlog just keeps getting bigger and bigger. I'd like to finish all the games I have before the next-gen starts. I'll probably set that as my target. That should give me about a year or two. Anyway, check Atelier Rorona, Totori and Meruru's gameplay videos, reviews and articles all over and buy them, these games need support!