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Astria Ascending Review: A Throwback To The Dark Age Of JRPGs

Astria Ascending is a JRPG that harkens back to many classic retro titles while ignoring modern QoL improvements that would have improved the game.

Astria Ascending is a turn-based JRPG-style game developed by Artisan Studio and published by Dear Villagers and Maple Whispering Limited. The game tries to be a love letter to the classic JRPGs of the past, while seemingly ignoring every modern convenience that fans expect in the genre, leaving an experience that is frustrating and slow.

Astria Ascending throws the player headfirst into its strange fantasy world. The world of Astria Ascending is home to different fantasy races, who each send a representative to take up the mantle of a hero and become a Demigod. This is a role with a lot of prestige and personal power, but it comes at a cost, as the Demigods only have three years to live. The residents of the world eat a special fruit, called a Harmelon, which makes everyone live in peace. Problems start to arise when people refuse to eat the fruit and rebel against the order of things, leading to the Demigods being sent into action. They soon realize that the problems are close to home, as many of their former family members have turned against them, and are gathering groups of monsters (referred to as Noises) to wage war.

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