Ys Seven

released on Sep 16, 2009

The kingdom of Altago is rebuilding their kingdom around a newfound peace after years of war against the merciless armies of Romn. The classic adventuresome duo, Adol and Dogi, arrive in the harbor of Altago City, and quickly find themselves in a scuffle with the Dragon Knights, the kingdom's military police body, when attempting to save a local girl from harassment by one of their commanding officers. Upset by the interruption and subsequent humiliation, the commander arrests Adol and Dogi, charging them with espionage.

The king of Altago, having known of the duo's pending arrival from an old trusted friend, quickly releases the pair from prison and summons them to his chambers. He tells the men about an ancient shrine that was uncovered after a recent earthquake, and asks for their help in investigating this mysterious new find. Adol and Dogi oblige, unaware that they are about to take the first steps on a long journey to save all of Altago from long-forgotten ancient forces, and to reunite the estranged five tribes who serve and protect the Five Great Dragons deified beings who may well be the world's last hope.

Ys Seven is the latest installment in the long-running Ys series which first debuted on PC in 1987. This is the first iteration to be built specifically for the PSP system, taking full advantage of the widescreen format and hardware. The battle system consists of a three-member battle party with enemies engaged on the field map in real-time for fast-paced combat. Old fans of the series and new players alike will be immersed into the rich vibrant world containing over 30 hours of gameplay.

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Genuinely think this may be one of the most underrated RPGs out there and a lot of the things it does have not [or had not been] done better. The party system has always been controversial, but I feel like Ys Seven is the only instance where it's ever been married to the classic gameplay in a seamless manner. Items are /actually/ limited, bosses are challenging and telegraph their attack patterns well, and yet you now have access to a cast of different gameplay styles to use at your disposal, with fights being balanced around that. The dungeon design is fantastic and the plot tends to unfold as you traverse through Altago and gradually learn more about it, really evoking a sense of "adventure" in the player. Ys Seven is exceptional and it's a shame it doesn't get the appreciation it deserves.

More fun than Ys 8, but you can slowly feel the series losing its identity here. The weapon type system is bizarre and annoying, constantly breaking the flow of fighting. The shallowness caused by removing jumping is 'balanced' by a guard and dash move (which you always have to spam to move quickly around the gigantic maps), there's no fast travel for at least the first few hours? The feeling of being 'stuck to the ground' and my eyes glued to the minimap reminds me of the worst bits of games like Zwei 2.

There's so much loot and the gains you get by upgrading weapons with them feel minimal to the point it's easy to just overlook it entirely. It feels so routine to have to clear the enemies, stand at a item pile for 5 seconds, etc... cross-check if you can upgrade...

Still, the combat is fast paced and fun in the times it's working. It's a bit simple as far as the regular enemies go but fast paced enough that you have to do a little dodging.

I actually still like the boss design at this point in the series, even though the presence of healing items kind of balances it out in a weird way - I only died a few times to the first 5 bosses or so, so there wasn't much of the fun you get from Ys 6/Oath where you are constantly dying to get a sense for how to move in response to the bosses. It also feels far less dramatic because you don't have that sense of verticality that bosses in earlier Ys games utilized via your jump ability.

Overall, a fairly flat experience (so far - I quit at the fire temple). Also way, way too long! Quests are bizarrely hidden, you have to talk to 50 NPCs spewing nothingness before finding someone who tells you to run back and forth for 10 minutes to give you 4000 gold.

I still don't know how the later Ys Celceta will be, but if it's a bridge in between 7 and 8 (with the completionism of the forest) then that's not a great sign. 7 already has some of the later completionism, through the NPCs who ask you to find 10 of each type of wood, or find special gems.

I think over the past 15 years the Ys series seems to have lost some sort of leadership that really pressed the game to have a unique action identity.

It seems that, via osmosis, the bland ARPG design of the Japanese game industry slowly seeped into Falcom over those years. (But if Ys 9 is anything to go by, at least Falcom's action still tries to maintain an interesting simplicity, even if it's come to rely on bland parries and dodge rolling and has been poisoned by the "40+ hours of playtime!" completionism that's rampant across the industry).

The most mid YS game ever, in every aspect.
Combat is annoying early on, until you get a certain "powerup" which makes combat smoother, story is basically just go to these areas then go back because turns out there's more in those places.
The characters are ok, Tia is the best from the cast of this game.
But I guess we got playable Dogi, so that's a plus.

Inexcusable. The game play of 6 and OiF was fine, there was no need to change it. The areas are hollow and the 3 bosses I fought were tedious. A game shouldn't feel grindy and slow when I'm not even 5 hours into it.

Mid as hell got the worst final boss in the series too

This sure was a Game of all time

Nothing special, nothing offensive about this game. It just, exists.