It sometimes feels as though gacha-RPGs don’t even want us to like them. Clad in moody fantasy cliches and governed by incomprehensible rules and statistics, they’re not for the faint of heart.
Epic Odyssey looks different. Developed by Vietnamese studio Hiker Games, it injects the genre with a huge welcome dose of innovation and personality, thanks to its Breath of the Wild-inspired presentation and its engaging open world exploration.
Combat-wise, Epic Odyssey uses a familiar recipe. You’ve got a growing army of heroes at your disposal, belonging to a streamlined selection of three factions and three classes. Much of the gameplay involves pitting these heroes against your enemies in 5v5 battles involving turn-based combat and powerful rechargeable skills.
These heroes are gloriously diverse and beautifully presented in colorful 3D. They’re packed with personality, too, with their own unique backstories, animations, and in-game dialogue.
If you’ve played a gacha game before you’re already familiar with the basic routine of summoning heroes and tending to your army with upgrades and so on. Epic Odyssey lets you combine duplicates, plough weak heroes into strong ones, and so on.
But that’s not where the real fun lies. The aspect of Epic Odyssey that most interests us is the open-world exploration. The game takes place on the Lynea Continent, divided up into thirty chapters, and you spend a lot of your time navigating this world.
In these sections, Epic Odyssey plays almost like a traditional action-RPG. You’ll meet NPCs and learn about their lives, accept quests, raid chests, solve puzzles, discover secrets, and more, all from a classic isometric perspective.
Or, if you don’t have time for exploration and combat, you can engage Epic Odyssey’s idle features and let the game make progress for you in your absence, cutting out the grind that’s unavoidable in most gacha-RPGs.