[Vita] Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky Review

by Ceidz, Owner

Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky from publisher Aksys Games is a new PlayStation 4 and Vita RPG which took heavy inspiration from Valkyrie Profile (a game created by tri-Ace). It features a surprisingly expansive world, great battle mechanics and a long campaign. Interested so far? Come read our Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky review to read more about this title!

Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky Launch Trailer

In Exist Archive, you are following Kanata as he arrives on a strange new world. He doesn’t know how he got there and where the hell he is. Soon after, he hears the omnious voice of Yamatoga, a dark god that has taken residence in him. The voice tells him a little about the world he has stumbled in. It turns out he is in a place called Protolexa, which is not on Earth. Saying anything more would put is heavily into spoiler-territory, so I’ll let you to discover it for yourselves!

Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky Review - 4

The battle system included in Exist Archive is a semi fast-paced / real-time / turn-based / action-RPG hybrid split into attack and defending phases. When you are in the attack phase, every character on screen is bound to either the X, O, Triangle or Square buttons, and hitting each one will make the corresponding character attack. Each attack will take a little stamina from the shared amount available for the round, and the whole group can attack as long as you have enough stamina left.

When you are in the defending phase, enemies will attack all at once, and the same buttons will set the corresponding character into defense mode. A little strategy is involved here, because the global stamina bar refills only a little when in defense mode so if you go all in and have every character defend, you won’t have much stamina left for the next attack phase. I liked this risk vs. reward system which keeps the defending phase from being a strongly passive segment.

Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky Review - 9

Enemies are visible in the various dungeons. Since you can jump high, and because since this game is a 2.5D release, most of the fights CAN be avoided if you want to progress to the end of a dungeon faster. Speaking of which, each dungeon takes from 20 to 45 minutes to get through and you can’t save unless you leave the dungeon. Also, most of the side quests (available once a level is beaten) involve going back to zones you have previously cleared to further explore the are, as you speedrun the clocation or fight new bosses.

I was pleasantly surprised to notice that this game is fully voiced in English, which was great considering this game could have easily been released with Japanese-only audio. The soundtrack is honestly wonderful and has been composed by Motoi Sakuraba, the very same artist who created some very famous OST, particularly that of the Star Ocean series. In fact, playing this game felt like playing a distant spin-off for a Star Ocean game, which was awesome! The battle theme even sounds like it could have been in the recent Star Ocean 5.

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Final Thoughts
I liked playing the game for my Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky review – it’s a lengthy Action RPG with plenty to do (and redo) in its many dungeons. I particularly liked the battle system, not to mention that the soundtrack was superb. The graphics are impressive, and the gameplay was also very fun. Do not hesitate to grab this one if you like long RPG!

Cost: $39.99

PSN Game size: Vita – 3.2GB

You can purchase Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky right here.

This Exist Archive: The Other Side of the Sky review is based on a PS Vita copy provided by Aksys Games.

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