Copy Desk Chief

J.R. Ortega is the copy desk chief for the Victoria Advocate. He also writes about gaming news. Follow him on Twitter, @gmrs_thmb.

Sometimes the best games in life are those that remind us why we fell in love with gaming to begin with.

That game for me this year will be “Octopath Traveler,” which dropped Friday on the Nintendo Switch.

“Octopath Traveler” has eight playable characters, and like the title suggests, each character has their own path you can play. Now, I haven’t played the game just yet – I haven’t even purchased it. My understanding though is that there isn’t necessarily one overarching story. Rather, each character really does have their own involved story, which is a pretty cool take for a role-playing game.

The game is beautiful and channels RPGs back when the Super Nintendo Entertainment System was at its prime. You know, back when many RPGers fell in love with games like “Final Fantasy.”

“Octopath Traveler” manages to bring that art-style with a high-definition 2D look to the game, which looks amazing. The game, for me, reminds me of “Valkyrie Profile 2: Silmeria.” I know they look a bit different, but something about “Octopath Traveler” reminds me of this. Perhaps it’s the classic feel that almost seems timeless.

It’s really not easy to create a new game that mimics old art-style. Also, you have to really count on the plot and playability to be a hit. If it’s not, then why play that over say something that is using the Nintendo Switch’s full graphic potential?

Already though, it seems the game is off to a good start. So much so, that Square Enix, the game’s creator, issued an apology for underestimating the hype over the game. It seems like Square Enix expected some fanfare, but not as much as this, so now there is a high demand but not much supply, specifically concerning physical copies of the game.

Right now, the game is selling physically and digitally for $59.99. It seems well worth the price. For now though, I’ll have to put the game on my back order list, especially since I’m finishing paying off our “Spiderman” Collector’s Edition purchase and our “Shadow of the Tomb Raider” Steelbook edition. (I may have a problem).

If “Octopath Traveler” has you excited but you can’t exactly go out and buy it right away, I strongly recommend “Asdivine Hearts” for Nintendo Switch. The game can be found on their eShop for $12.99. I purchased it about two months ago, and it’s a very fun RPG. It has a great storyline that’s reminiscent of those old-school RPGs we know and love.

If you’re looking for an in-depth look at the game, check out Jeremy Parish’s review on Polygon.com. Also, you can follow him on Twitter, @gamespite.

J.R. Ortega is the copy desk chief for the Victoria Advocate. He also writes about gaming news for his Gamer’s Thumb column. Follow him on Twitter.

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