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Chained Echoes is as close as you can get to retro-styled RPG perfection

I am rarely this enthusiastic about games, especially retro-styled games because so many miss the mark in numerous ways but thankfully Chained Echoes is just brilliant.

“Chained Echoes is a story-driven JRPG where a group of heroes travel around the vast continent of Valandis to bring an end to the war between its three kingdoms. In the course of their journey, they will travel through a wide array of diverse landscapes spanning from wind-tanned plateaus and exotic archipelagos to sunken cities and forgotten dungeons.”

Funded on Kickstarter back in 2019, it’s out now along with the Native Linux version and as far as I can tell, it’s awesome. It performs great, it looks bright and inviting with an art style that truly makes my eyes glow and the music as well — everything in this comes together so nicely. From the first few moments in the game, I knew I was going to love it.

Honestly, not only is this shaping up to be one of my favourite games of the year, it has the makings to be eventually classed as a true classic in its own right.

Modern features and retro styles fused together in a way that makes me want to keep coming back for more. It has good pacing, you can pretty much save wherever you want and the battles are a lot of fun too with multiple mechanics that makes them interesting. From the various abilities you get, to the overdrive system that has you plan your moves to stay inside the green bar and not overheat your team — and failure isn’t annoying here, just try the battle again and you heal between battles. What joy.

Here’s some Steam Deck footage, spoilers within:

Game Features:

  • 30 – 40 hours of play time.
  • Fast paced turn-based battles.
  • No random encounters; enemies can be seen running around.
  • Tons of items to be looted, stolen or crafted.
  • Complex skill and equipment system.
  • Customize your own airship.
  • Travel and fight by foot or in your Mech.
  • 16-bit SNES style graphics.
  • Music inspired by PSX RPGs.

Don’t sleep on this, could easily be my GOTY.

Available to buy on GOG and Steam.

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