Gamespot score:7.0 (good)

my score:8.5

(+)Pros:-Many improvements from previous games,-all new character classes that differ from those of the previous games,-sub-classes are awesome,-voyaging out at see is a good new feature that manages to be enjoyable on its own,- multiple endings unlike the previous games,-dungeon exploration is still as addictively good as before,- good soundtrack.

(-)Cons:-Difficulty can turn many players off,-retraining of jobs is optional but still proves to be annoying.

Gameplay time:50 hours+

Etrian odyssey! Oh how attached to this series I have grown. The challenging difficulty, diverse character developement system and alluring dungeon mapping system have kept me coming back for more. As a series, etrian odyssey is pretty awesome, I myself think so. Etrian odyssey 1 was a refreshing new experience, though it was hard, it managed to capture the attention of many, due to its difficulty, dungeon and character developement. Etrian odyssey 2 sported the same systems, though to me it was less enjoyable due to nerfs. In EO 3, all new jobs are introduced, and lots of new stuff have been added, making up for something more amazing than the previous 2 games.

Etrian odyssey, as a series, wasn't really known for being story driven. You are given a main plot and concept, everything else after that is dungeon crawling. Sure, you are still given story insentives as you go deeper, you meet new characters, more secrets of the labrinth get revealed, so on and so forth. In etrian odyssey 3, this remains the same. You arrive at the port city armoroad as a novice adventurer, and are determined to explore the yggrasil labrinth, like all other adventures that venture to armoroad. Of course, you make a guild, recruit some other fellows like yourself, become accepted by the senatus after a short tutorial mission, then you're off! You plunge into the yggdrasil labrinth, hoping to gain fame and fortune, but of course, its not as simple as that. On the way, you discover hidden and ulterior motives, and some of the labrinth's secrets get revealed, forcing you to take sides. The story deepens abit more than previous EO games, but all in all, the story is still, not a big factor in the game, though this time, you get scenes where you have to choose between choices, and this affects your ending.

Players beware! Prepare to get owned by a bunch of frogs!

Etrian odyssey 3 pretty much follows the core gameplay that its predeccesors once held. You create characters that you put in your party of 5 during exploration. Your guild can hold to a maximum of 30 members, but you only need 5. Character creation is simple, you pick a class, pick a gender, a portrait, name the character and you're good to go. In etrian odyssey 3, the classes are totally revamped. All the old classes you know are gone, protectors, alchemists, survivalists, dark hunter....say good bye to all that. In EO 3, we are introduced to new classes, such as the ninja, gladiator, hoplite, zodiac, arbalist, prince/princess and many more. These new classes, in one way or another bear SOME resemblence to the older classes in previous games, but they are also very much new in thier own way.

As usual, you can build these characters as you see fit, all classes have their own set of skills that make them special in one way or another. Team synchronization is key, and if you just load a team full of bucaneers to deal damage things wont go so well. You have to balance your team so that your survival is assured, the game is punishing, and choosing the right team plays a big part of the experience. Theres even a sub class feature available to you later in the game, where a character can have a 2nd class, in addition to its initial one. Cool stuff. A new feature of the game is he voyages. You can now sail around the oceans of armoroad, discovering places and mapping the sea charts. Finding new places will unlock quests in which you will be dispatched to kill bosses with the help of NPC controlled characters. Not bad, if I do say so myself.

The mapping system is still as addicting as you remember. And
of course, the FOEs are still here.
 The game's main focus is toward its addictive dungeon crawling. Of course, before you set foot, there are things to note. In town, you have your usual places which you stop by. The inn is where you save your game, rest up, store items and revive your dead characters. Kinda like the "base of operations". The napier's firm is where you get armor, weapons, items and its also where you sell your loot. The butterfly bistro is where you accept side quests and talk to other NPCs. The guild is obviously where you start off and where you create characters. Then theres the port, where you set sail on voyages, as explained earlier.

Then theres the senatus where you view archives and accept official missions. Combining all these into your knowledge and you can tackle the dungeon. In dungeons, your misson is to forge deeper into the larinth, and your progress is tough. You have to memorize the routes, thus you have draw the maps out using the touch screen and icons given. Drawing the wrong map will screw you up later on, and mapping out the paths you just took can be addicting. Monsters also hamper your exploration, and boy are there angry. These monsters, though some may look weak and easy, can kill your characters in a matter of hits. As expected of EO, the monsters dont let up at all. Combine this with the high encounter rate, certain events that force you into battle, damaging tiles and of course FOEs, things can get sticky real fast.

With FOEs, your journey around the levels of the labrinth will never be easy. FOEs are red balls of death roaming the floors of the yggdrasil labrinth, and move when you do. Some follow a set routine for patrol, while others hunt you down. Each and every FOE is powerful as hell and can wipe you out like nothing, and this time, with addition of tiles that slow you down when you walk on them, escaping from FOEs has become a bigger issue. Still, the formula stays in tact, altough everything seems tough and hard, the rewards you get are stellar, and satisfaction is guranteed.

Ocean voyages are one of the new features in the game.

Etrian odyssey 3, like both of its predessecors, share the same flaws. For one, difficulty, it seems atlus isnt going to let up at all, the game is as hard as its predessecors. It may be slighty more lenient in terms of currenct this time, since you can spend time fishing, but monsters still hit hard, and FOEs hunt you down relentlessly. Its obvious that you will fall quite a number of times during your adventure in the labrinth, and this will turn people off. Its definetely not fun to die after exploring a huge load and having to do it again since you can't save in most parts of the labrinth. Also, like previous game's hexer/ronin/beast jobs, this game has also jobs that you probably wont want to invest into, since you have to train from scratch. Enter the shogun and yggdroid. While they are interesting jobs to have around, having the train them from scratch isnt fun at all.

Etrian odyssey 3 is the best one yet. The core gameplay has been tweaked to be better than ever. While difficulty can still be an issue, if you have to will to further yourself into the game, beat bosses and explore the labrinth, you will yourself a wonderful and satisfying experience that little other games can provide. If you enjoyed previous etrian odyssey games, be sure not to miss this one.

Happy gaming!