[PlayStation 5] Terra Memoria Review

by Ceidz, Owner

Terra Memoria from Dear Villagers and La Moutarde is a new RPG adventure set in the world of Terra in which you’ll have to unravel the mystery of missing crystals – the world’s energy source. Check our Terra Memoria review!

Terra Memoria welcomes you with open arms: six lovable characters, an investigation through all ages, a world with crazy inhabitants, and cozy music… a little RPG with exploration, fighting, construction, and puzzles.

Visit the past and present to discover who controls the crystals, why the ancient machines are attacking, and how everything is linked (nooo, really?)

Terra Memoria from Dear Villagers and La Moutarde is a new RPG adventure set in the world of Terra. In Terra, everything runs on Crystal as the world’s energy source. For reasons unknown, there’s a worldwide crystal shortage, and your team is tasked to investigate the situation and find a resolution. While you’re there, you’re also asked to take care of carcasses – junk robots – that suddenly began attacking villagers. At its core, Terra Memoria is a relaxing RPG with a beautiful and surprisingly expansive world to explore. The world is in 3D, and the characters are pixelated sprites, which gives this a great-looking presentation. There are also a lot of villages in the world to uncover, and each village has a ton of residents and quests to tackle.

You’ll be joined by six characters in your adventure, and I liked the interesting and original gameplay mechanic: half of them are front liners and will be the actual attackers on the field. The other half is randomly (or not, your choice) assigned to one of the front liners at each battle and acts as modifiers. One of them changes the spells you use from one enemy to all of them. Another one changes the elemental type so you can select a different elemental attack or have a single enemy attack changed for a ranged one. I left the randomization on since it made each battle strategy feel slightly different.

This game includes a turn-based battle system. You’ll use skills learned by the characters, and depending on how strong the spell is, the character will take longer to recover for its next turn. This is shown in the timeline at the bottom of the screen, which shows the battle order. I liked how you can use weaker spells that regenerate quicker to have more than one turn before the enemies attack.

Terra Memoria PS5 Review

All of the enemies have elemental weaknesses and shield points, and when they are hit just right, their elemental shield is broken, and they become weak to anything – which felt very similar to how recent Final Fantasy “staggers” enemies. When the enemies’ shields are broken, feel free to unleash attacks at them before they recover! Encounters are always visible in the world, but their respawn rate is – unfortunately, alarmingly fast. Essentially, if their spawn point gets out of the screen, they’ll immediately come back, which was annoying when backtracking was required, as evading an encounter is not always possible.

My main complaint about this otherwise fun battle system is how slow it is. Each character and enemy animation takes some time, and when you’re up against a few enemies at once and finished your turn, you’ll have to wait until your next turn, which felt longer than needed – I mean, you have enough time to check your social networks feed! Moreover, when you hit an enemy weakness or when its shield breaks, you’ll each time have a notice letting you know you hit a weakness, and another if the shield broke that requires a button press to close and proceed through the battle as it is completely stopped until your controller input. This happened anywhere between 5 to 10+ times per battle and was annoying because there’s already a floating mention that tells you you’ve hit a weakness right next to the damage that automatically vanishes. Since you likely selected an elemental spell for this effect – as it is the core of the game – I thought that the notices were not needed at all past the first few battles when you were learning the basics.

There’s a Fast-Forward feature in the battle that is activated by pressing the R2 button. Unfortunately, it isn’t a toggle and will require you to keep the R2 button pressed throughout the entire 15 hours that this game has to offer, which actually made my right hand hurt by the time I reached the end of the game. But even Fast-Forwarding battles don’t increase the speed much because the “weakness was hit” and “enemy shield is broken” notices will still appear, but they will close by themselves after 3 seconds of being displayed in Fast Forwarding mode. Since the game requires you to hit elemental weaknesses and break shields to get through enemies, you’ll see this mention in front of you way too much in each combat, which was annoying. In my opinion, this could be easily fixed: either remove those notices and only keep floating messages, or switch the Fast-Forwarding mode to a toggle and don’t show those popups when you are in this mode. When you’re not in battle and open treasure chests, for instance, you’ll see the item collected in a non-blocking floating mention on the right side of the screen.

Terra Memoria PlayStation 5 Review

Outside the battle system, I also had an issue with how you are directed in this game. I often got lost and didn’t know exactly where to go as the world is expansive, and there’s a lot to do. I didn’t mind getting lost in a side quest, but I thought that being unsure how to progress through the main quest itself was an issue, and it happened a few times. I would also have liked a mini-map visible on the top corner of the game when exploring a dungeon. I eventually resorted to checking the game map more than a few times per minute to make sure I was headed in the same direction. Random side-quests like “Go there” or “Consider as such” (and too many others) are as random as the objective popping up when you unintentionally reach it, as you do not know what must be done to complete them. I’m sure this was intended as a joke from the development team, but as a fan of clear objectives, this felt like a miss for me.

One aspect I liked is how experience is awarded. As you fight and fight, experience is stacked and is awarded only when you go to an inn or find a campfire in the overworld to spend the night. I thought it was satisfying seeing the experience and level ups popping up all at once. At a campfire, you can also forge new items for your crew and cook food that will give you permanent HP bonuses each time you cook a new recipe, and there are many to uncover.

On the presentation side, I thought that the art style was great, with a mix of 3D backgrounds and pixelated sprites over it, similar to the HD-2D style we’ve seen in games like Octopath Traveller and Triangle Strategy. Some backgrounds however looked like they had a muhc lower resolution, namely in towns. Unfortunately, the frame rate isn’t perfect and the game can’t keep a 30 frames per second when you’re moving on the field or in cities.

As for the trophies, there are 30 trophies, split into 9 Bronze trophies, 17 Silver trophies, and 4 Gold trophies… along with a Platinum. About half of the trophies will unlock as you progress through the game. A bunch are awarded for your fighting style, and some will need careful planning to unlock. There are also a few miscellaneous trophies about the mini city simulator Beegihn and the residents you’ll find on the world, and others are for cooking foods. The last one you’ll likely obtain is accumulating a bonus of 400 HP for all the recipes cooked, but it will be a quick grind once you have completed everything else.

Terra Memoria Review

Terra Memoria is an overall great RPG that has a fun adventure and a nice battle system. I mentioned the battle system was too slow for my taste, but as that is the main complaint I had about this game, it also means that I had fun with it. This game has a great world to explore and it is easy to recommend this adventure. Terra Memoria is out on PlayStation 5 with a $19.99 price tag. You can also get the Terra Memoria Deluxe Edition, which includes the base game and the Terra Memoria digital artbook and soundtrack.


This Terra Memoria review is based on a PlayStation copy provided by Dear Villagers.

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