Behind the bright lights and giant screens that fill Tokyo's stylish shopping district of Shibuya, there are portals that lead to different worlds. Some of them are tranquil temples, and some of them danger-filled arenas. These are the unseen battlegrounds where spirits wage war against each other -- and in Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE, you'll join a war in which it's just as important to hit the high notes as the bad guys.
Get ready to slay evil Mirages – and slay like a pop star -- in Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE, an exclusive Japanese RPG from the genre masters at Atlus, coming exclusively to Wii U on June 25. Launching alongside the solus game (SRP AU$89.95) on June 25, the limited Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE Fortissimo Edition (SRP AU$119.95) should be music to RPG fans’ ears.
Ever wanted to save the world while legions of adoring fans chant your name? Or tear apart Tokyo icons like the 106 building? Tokyo Mirage Sessions combines Fire Emblem and Shin Megami Tensei into a fusion of style and tactics.
The crowd is roaring while you fight, and big screens blow up your face for everyone to see. Fashion and charm are just as life-or-death as strategy here, so it's a must to jam while you slam.
This is a world in which a person's ability to perform -- the power of their talent -- affects their ability to harmonise with the various Mirages floating around Tokyo. As the city starts to become overwhelmed with Mirages more inclined towards evil, we join three young schoolkids who might not have much life experience, but are bursting at the seems in talent.
Poor Itsuki never intended to be dragged into all this. He followed his friend Tsubasa into a mysterious portal, and by the time they emerged, they had met friendly Mirages who would fight alongside them. Itsuki's Mirage, Chrom, takes the form of a sword and deals slash and lightning damage. From an early point, he can also buff the defences of his allies.
Our story is about Tsubasa just as much as Itsuki, and this aspiring pop star is desperate to find out what happened to her famous sister. She also happens to be a die-hard fan of J-pop legend Kiria, but hey, who isn't? Tsubasa's Mirage is Caeda, who turns into a lance to allow her master to deal piercing damage. Tsubasa starts with the ability to heal allies, and remains a strong magician late into the game.
You could mistake Touma for a "third wheel", if you didn't know how close these three are. Not to mention, Itsuki is blind to Tsubasa's affections, but that's a story for another time! Touma has ambitions of heroism, and his Mirage Cain is just as eager for battle. Cain takes the form of a double-bladed stave for Touma to frighten enemies with. His strength is high from the beginning, and his attacks contain fiery surprises.
In Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE, you'll take turns against enemies dealing attacks in strategic sequences. The order in which actions will take place is at the top of the screen, and clever tacticians will use this to deny their opponents attacks. Target an enemy that's ahead of one of your characters in the order, and you could kill it, keeping your turn going.
That's not the only way you can “cheat” your enemy out of a turn. Certain attacks will start a “session” -- effectively a multi-character combo that lasts as long as you designed it to. If your enemy is weak to swords, start with a slash attack. You’ve already loaded up your friends with abilities that continue on from sword attacks, so they jump in as well.
Clever use of this system means you can combo through one or two enemies before they even get a chance to strike back. You’ll have to experiment to see what different enemies are weak to, and you can look this information up on the gamepad during the fight, which also functions as a mobile for your allies to text you useful hints.
Texting in the middle of a battlefield? That’s so Gen Y.
There are all kinds of bonuses built around the Session system. If an enemy’s HP drops to zero during a session, you get an “Overkill” bonus. The crowd goes wild, and your opponent doesn’t benefit from resistances for a while. Potentially a life saver if you get surprised by something with high magic resistance -- just use the minion next to it as a platform for an Overkill, then move on to the real target.
In the universe of Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE, your ability to defend yourself is tied to your connection with your Mirage -- which is in turn affected by your ability to express yourself. That can mean art, acting, and course J-pop! As you can guess, the super-famous idol Kiria has a performance ability that translates into great warrior skills in the Mirage realm:
This all means it's not enough just to master the combat systems of the game -- you'll also have to navigate stressful situations in a way that your characters will be inspired. When the dark side starts winning, it's kind of important to not lose hope, y'know?
Of course it wouldn’t be a proper JRPG combat system without some super abilities, and this is where your Mirages take over completely and unleash a huge attack on your enemy. It looks great, and it’s powerful, but trust me when I say you’ll need them -- some enemies are designed to be very hard to kill if you can’t pull off a super move, and I’m not even talking about boss fights.
The early stages of the game do a good job of easing you into that, though. You’ll learn how best to generate your super meter before those attacks are ever mission-critical. In the first two chapters, you can expect the skills your allies learn to be heavily controlled by the game, just so you get a good idea of what good session combos look like. Later on, you can build more complex synergies between your allies. Experimentation is encouraged -- just save your game before you do!
You can stay up to date on all the Tokyo Mirage Sessions news on Nintendo's social channels: