Operation Babel: New Tokyo Legacy is a role playing game / dungeon crawler available for the PlayStation Vita, and most recently, Steam. It was developed by Experience Inc., and released by NIS America. It plays very similar to the Etrian Odyssey games, available on the 3DS, except with a science fiction setting instead of a more fantasy oriented one. Overall, it’s a decent, fun game, and I enjoyed the hours that I sunk into the game. I would have liked to spend more time playing it, but I would have wanted those hours to be on a Vita copy of the game because the Windows port seems to have some issues.
The biggest issue with the port is the controls. They’re weird, they’re not intuitive, and it takes some getting used to – this is also my primary reason for believing that the game will be much better on Vita. The game does come with full controller support on Steam, and while I didn’t get a chance to try it out with a controller, that might alleviate the issues that I had. There are a few other miscellaneous problems I noticed while playing. The translated English dialogue is clunky and awkward at times, but perfectly serviceable. During combat, after selecting actions for your party, you then get to pick just moving on the next round, where all the results happen at once, or you have to click through everything. Personally, I found neither option enjoyable. I’d rather things flowed on their own after I select my party’s actions. Besides the poor controls, these are all minor issues.
The games story is fairly straight forward, and with emphasis on the Japanese part of JRPG. I say neither of these as bad points, but because it’s the best way to describe the story and the feel of the game. If you enjoy JRPG’s, manga, and anime, you will almost certainly enjoy New Tokyo Legacy. If you don’t, I can’t really recommend it to you. In the world, an unknown object hangs in the sky, which people refer to as the Embryo. It brought monsters and other magical things to the world. Your character is a bystander recruited into Xth after a monster attacks a busy street. You lead Babel squad, full of fresh recruits, and carry out missions from the groups headquarters which lie underneath the school you all attend.
Graphics and sounds are fine. The game has some very nice background, character, and monster art, as well as some nice special effects. Being a game that’s also available on the Vita, you might find yourself disappointed if you go in expecting good computer game graphics. For example, monsters are often just still images – pretty images – that move around. Sound wise, the job gets done. The background music isn’t something I will be humming to myself any time sooner, but it wasn’t bad. There’s a little bit of voice acting. The game has a pretty in-depth character creator for a handheld RPG, and it lets you customize both your character and your party members. It would have been nice to see some more work done on effects and sounds to make attacks have a bit more oomph.
Overall, Operation Babel: New Tokyo Legacy is a fine game. While I can’t promise anything, I do think it would be a better game on the PlayStation Vita, but it’s definitely worth a look on Steam. The game is available now, and sports a 25% discount – so you have no reason to not go check it out. That being said, it’s not a perfect game but it’s the type of game that fans of the genre will absolutely love.
A copy of Operation Babel: New Tokyo Legacy was provided to Link-Cable by the publisher for the purpose of this review.