Many have compared Mistover to Darkest Dungeon, and it can’t be helped as the atmosphere given off from it and its art direction, albeit its ‘vibrant’ tone, is rather similar upon first impressions. But what sets it apart from Darkest Dungeon, among many other things, is that Mistover has waifu’s. Yes, you get waifu’s even without installing any mods!
All jokes aside, Mistover is a rogue-like mystery dungeon crawler, set in a grim world of monster and corruption, and has cute anime-like or chibi characters. Despite the feeling of familiarity to Darkest Dungeon on the first impression, that feeling doesn’t linger beyond a few minutes. And if you enjoy Darkest Dungeon or the rogue-like genre as a whole, Mistover isn’t a game you should Mist-over.
Humanity has been pushed to the brink of destruction ever since the appearance of a massive vortex christened ‘Pillar of Despair’. With its appearance, mist begins to spread across the lands and monstrosity known as Esper spews forth from its depths. As the final frontier of humanity, Arta, an exploration group known as the Expedition Corps was founded with the sole purpose of exploring the vortex. Hoping that the key to ending the apocalypse lies within.
Mistover | KRAFTON
It’s not all gloom and doom with Mistover, as there is a sense of lightheartedness within it. Whenever you visit the local shop, you’re greeted by a friendly and cheerful shopkeeper while being accompanied by a piece of upbeat music. And your outwardly cold-hearted Shadow Blade has a secret love for sweets and cute things, which you can see her taking out and hugging her teddy bear from time to time.
The gameplay of Mistover can easily be divided into 3 segments, town activities, exploration and combat. The town has various facilities that can help you in your preparation before you venture into the dungeons.
New characters can be recruited through the Expedition Center and new skills can be thought from the Training Center. Though Skill Points are needed to learn new or improve existing skills, it can be obtained when your characters level up.
My favourite place to be among all of the facilities within the town is the Shop. It is run by a cheerful shopkeeper name Marie. Her bright smile coupled with the shop upbeat theme, a stark contrast to the droning and ominous sound through most of the game, served as the perfect place to catch a momentary respite after delving into the ominous dungeon. And I also need to prepare food, potions and other essentials before the next venture.
It’s best to drop by the office to collect any available mission, though you can ignore it if you just wish to grind. These missions are to be completed within the dungeon and they are generally constructed around finding specific objects or killing specific enemies. Undertaking these mission allows you to progress with the game story and some of it provide backstories to the lives of the NPC living within the town.
Mistover | KRAFTON
Now that your preparation is complete, it’s time to dive into one of the dungeons in Mistover. A party can have up to 5 characters and they can be set into formation along in a 3×3 grid. Whether a skill can be used is dependent on where the user is standing, and the party will receive a slight boost in stats based on its formation. This should sound pretty similar to the Darkest Dungeon 1×4 grid, minus the boost in stats.
Exploration sees your party navigating through a semi-randomly generated grid-based map as you go about your business. Every dungeon has its own unique theme, such as the Cursed Town being a maze and the Cathedral Ruin having large rooms with narrow connecting corridors. This makes each dungeon has its own set of challenges for you to overcome.
As your character walks through the dungeon, your hunger and light meter goes down. You will find yourself keeping a close eye on those meters, so as to not starve or trudge around in the darkness. This will result in you rationing the supplies that you have brought along as you explore the dungeon.
Different characters have different exploration skills. The Sister doubles your party health regeneration rate when you’re out of combat and the Onmyoji disarms traps and can see through invisible units. Though it’s best to focus your party composition around combat, having certain characters in the party definitely makes certain dungeon to be a walk in the park to explore.
Combat in Mistover takes place between 2 parties, you and your enemy. The unused space in the 3×3 grid adds another layer of strategy. Some characters have certain skills to push or pull their target. Thus effectively denying them from activating certain skills or attacks due to their new position and affecting the bonus stats the party has based on their formation.
Besides the default attack, your characters require MP to activate their skills and the only way to recover MP is by blocking or walking around the dungeon. Some of the characters such as the Ronin doesn’t conform to this rule. He has his own MP system and it increases as he attacks or secures a kill. Managing your party MP is vital as you explore the dungeon, as it may make or break your party in the next fight.
With that being said, combat in Mistover is relatively fair and it is in no way difficult. Moments such as ‘REALLY?! 90% CHANCE TO HIT AND I STILL MISS!!’ are few and far between. More often than not, this situation can easily be mitigated with the right equipment.
Any misfortune that occurred is mostly your own. Forgetting to bandage your characters after a battle to which they die from bleeding out or not bringing enough supplies to the dungeon and cause your party to die from hunger are incidents due to your own negligence.
Mistover | KRAFTON
Once you have left the dungeon, the Doomsday Clock will appear. The Doomsday Clock acts as an encouragement for you to progress with the story or a determent so as you won’t grind 24/7. When the hand of the clock strikes midnight, the vortex will ravage the land and the game will be over.
To revert the hand as far back as possible, you’re to kill every single enemy in the dungeon, open every chest and break every crate. Failing to achieve these will accelerate the clock. Bullying the weak monster with your strongest team will move the hand forward too.
Any unidentified loot can be taken to the Alchemy Workshop back in town to unlock hidden stats for those equipment. As there are different levels of grade in equipment, the higher level will grant additional stats.
You can fuse those equipment with another to boost its base stats. Naturally, the better grade equipment has a higher fusion limit. Though it is possible to increase the maximum fusion limit, it can only be done when the wearer dies in the dungeon. Those equipment will have their fusion cap raised, but it will come at the cost of your characters and the item being cursed.
Mistover | KRAFTON
I do have some minor gripes with Mistover. First, there is only one colour palette per class. It would be easier to identify characters of the same class with different colour schemes when you have multiple of them. Like I said, a minor gripe.
The other is that learning new skills consume SP and SP is a limited resource. I can understand that placing such a restriction is to promote players to get multiple characters of the same class to perform different roles, rather than wanting to have that one character to do everything. But seeing that the skills of the characters are driven by RNG, it is not guaranteed that you’re able to acquire a character with all of your desired skills. And given the fact that the characters you can hire rotates after every expedition, you may get an even worse roll than the previous one or none at all.
Overall, Mistover pretty much does its own thing and any resemblance to Darkest Dungeon is nothing but a Mistconception in the first few minutes of the game. Those that would like to have another Darkest Dungeon experience but without its gruesome RNG or a great rogue-like strategy, Mistover should not be miss.
Platform: PC (Windows[Played]), PlayStation 4 & Nintendo Switch
Rating: 8.5 out of 10
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