The Last Story's Online Play Detailed
The conversation system, team play, bananas and more!
We've been hearing preliminary details on The Last Story's online play system for some time now. This week's Famitsu has a close up look at this particular area of the Mistwalker RPG through a four page spread.
To get into a multiplayer session with The Last Story, you select "MULTIPLAY" from the game's title menu screen (the screen, shown in Famitsu, also has selections for "CONTINUE" and "NEW GAME," set against a background of ruins).
You can choose from two different types of online play: Versus and Raid. The former is a free-for-all fight. The latter is a co-op boss fight. Both modes have lobbies, respectively the "Versus Lobby" and "Raid Lobby," where you select and set up your character and chat with fellow players (more on that below).
You can also choose the type of match you want: "random," played with unknown players, or "friend," played with friends. In addition to these two options, the match type select screen has selections for "ranking" and "friend list."
During group Raid play, your character's equipment and parameters carry over from single player mode, although the game does equalize everyone's level. You'll be able to select your character from Elza and his mercenary friends. As this is a team-based fight, party balance is important.
Famitsu introduces a couple of the beast you fight in Raid mode: Kraken and Atar. Kraken is a giant squid-like beast. Atar is a monster with a number of wings. Atar capable of flying around, so you'll probably want to have a long-distance character in your party.
One strange point about Atar is that he seems to have two HP gauges. Your rival monster's HP gauge is shown in the upper right corner of the screen. In Atar's case, there are two of these gauges, and they seem to deplete independently. Perhaps there are two targets on the creature?
Defeat one of Raid Mode's beasts, and you'll find yourself with items themed around the creature. A results screen in Famitsu shows everyone in the party earning an item called "Kraken's Foot."
In Versus Mode, the game does away with any differences in level and ability for your story mode characters, resulting in an even fight for all players. Your character customization data is reflected only as physical appearance changes, with no changes to parameters.
Your choice of characters for this mode includes not just Elza and his mercenary allies, but members of the recently introduced Gurugu race and other characters. Yes, it looks like you'll be able to use characters who aren't playable in story mode!
You're also free to select your stage in Versus Mode. The choice is important, as the stages all have unique formations and gimmicks, making for a different play experience.
As you defeat opponents, you earn points. When you're on the defeated end, you lose points, but respawn elsewhere to continue the fight. Your goal is to have the most points at the end of the five minute fighting time limit (Famitsu doesn't say if the limit can be adjusted).
At the end of battle, all players are rewarded with items, weapons and paint (used for painting your equipment during item customization). While all players receive rewards, the top placers get the best stuff. Players are also given a title mark indicating their skill level.
Obviously, you'll want to make sure you end up as close to the top ranks as possible. While the game doesn't show the current point count for players, it does flag the current leader with a crown mark.
You'll need to make use of items if you want to gain an advantage over your opponent. Items appear on the fields of play as you fight. Famitsu introduces the following:
- Prank Banana
- This can be set as the ammo for your bow gun sub weapon. The item will make your opponent slip.
- Sticky Sword
- This sword does damage and also slows down your opponent. The game has other weapons that are equipped with similar bonus properties.
- Destruct Arrow
- Just one example of special arrows for your bow gun sub weapon. The Destruct Arrow explodes upon contact. The explosion can engulf multiple enemies.
- Inishie no Katamari
- This item ups your defense temporarily. Your character becomes surrounded in a purple aura.
At last week's Last Story Presentation, director Hironobu Sakaguchi mentioned something about team-based play for Versus Mode. Famitsu confirms that the six players will be able to split into two teams, although it does not have further details on rule changes.
One final area of multiplayer play detailed in Famitsu this week concerns chatting. You can equip your character with preset messages which can be used for chat in the lobby and during battle. The game provides messages pulled from the the story mode's dialogue, along with multiplayer-specific messages. The messages are shown as text and played back aurally.
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