Sometimes there are games, along with movies and other media, where if you haven’t experienced earlier titles in the series then you’re lost. You won’t know who the characters are, their motivations, or what exactly is going on. Luckily Adventure Labyrinth Story isn’t one of those games. While it may technically be the third game in a series, you won’t need to have beaten or even played the first two games.
Adventure Labyrinth Story stands on its own and is definitely something to experience.
Adventure Labyrinth Story takes place in the same locale as Adventure Bar Story and features many of the same characters, except instead of running the bar like the first game you’re instead exploring a mysterious labyrinth which appeared next to the town. And what makes this labyrinth even more mysterious is that every time you enter it the layout has completely changed. But not only will you be going down there blind every time, there are more complications to this exploration.
Like most games you’ll start the game at level 1. As you explore the dungeon and fight the hordes of monsters within you’ll level up. However, should you be defeated you’re sent back to the surface and back to town … but you’re reduced back to level 1 and you’ll lose all of your items. Actually every time you escape the labyrinth and return to town your level will be reset to 1. This can make things tricky, but actually the more you do this the stronger you’ll become.
While you lose all of your items in defeat, you can voluntarily return to town when you want as long as you have a “Book of Escape” in your possession. Reading the book casts the spell to whisk you home again with all of your items in tow. You can then visit a local fellow in town to combine some of the abilities of some of your gear to make them stronger.
Going into the labyrinth prepared is essential and getting better gear before going back in is key. Not only because you’ll meet a wide variety of monsters but also because your luck can turn at any moment.
While you explore you can only see one square directly in front and behind you while in corridors. You’re exploring the floors of the labyrinth blind for the most part, though in rooms you can see all round you. You can also find tomes scattered around which allow you to cast magical spells, including those which will allow you to unveil the map or the floor, locations of enemies, traps, or items as well as lifting the veil of shadows in the level.
One thing that the game does well is something that is often overlooked in many RPGs: hunger. Not only are you going to need to heal your life whilst exploring, you’ll also need to keep your stomach full. You can find items, or cook them back at the bar and bring with you, to keep yourself satisfied. If your hunger level drops to zero you’ll start to lose life as you walk.
This is the opposite of the rest of the experience in the dungeon. Healing items are only really necessary when fighting a stronger monster or if you’re being ambushed. Luckily you’ll restore your health as you walk, with about 1 HP being restored for every six steps you take.
About the hardest part while playing through the game, aside from some of the nastier and devious monsters, is the limited inventory size. You’ll be able to carry 24 items in your inventory and they don’t stack. So if you happen to pick up a few magical rods while your exploring, each one will take up an inventory spot. You’ll quickly have to become a rudimentary inventory organizer, knowing when to drop items and when to use items to clear space in your inventory.
This game feels very similar to the Pokémon Mystery Dungeon series, which also features randomized dungeons and battle mechanics.
If you enjoy randomly generated dungeons and a constantly challenging experience then Adventure Labyrinth Story is a game that will scratch that itch. You won’t be able to soup up your character, grind, and become an unstoppable force. But with some fine tuning and luck you may just find your way. Definitely check this one out.