Generally favorable reviews - based on 49 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 37 out of 49
  2. Negative: 0 out of 49
  1. 100
    If there is one phrase that can cover just about everything Odin Sphere is about, it would be this: Odin Sphere has 2D sensibilities. If you remove the technological aspect of the game - not that you'd want to - you have a game that could just as easily been released on the Super Nintendo and ruled the hearts and dreams of fan boys and girls around the world.
  2. 100
    Odin Sphere may have flaws and you might find yourself repeating areas over and over again as you play through the five different books, but the fact of the matter is that this is as close to perfection as you're going to get on the PS2.
  3. If you’re looking for a PS2 RPG with a unique personality, Odin Sphere’s the game for you.
  4. Take the time to savor Odin Sphere--they don't make too many like it anymore. [July 2007, p.92]
  5. One of the most enjoyable, unique, and visually appealing titles the veteran PS2 has ever seen. With a brawler foundation and borrowing from several other gameplay styles, Odin Sphere should appeal old-school gamers, RPG fans, and even button-mashers alike.
  6. With a unique and deep battle and level system, a good storyline, interesting characters, well balanced gameplay and plenty of eye and ear candy, Odin Sphere is an awesome game that will most likely go on any action and RPG fan's list of favorites.
  7. Daring, dazzling, and different. Divine.
  8. Odin sphere is a great game that I’m really enjoying and I think anyone with any interest in RPG's, action RPG's, or things from Japan in general will really enjoy this game.
  9. Gamers old and new will enjoy it, and it's truly a fun and unique gaming experience from beginning to end.
  10. It's different, and a true joy to see in motion. A great RPG swansong for the PS2. [Apr 2008, p.80]
  11. While some players may ultimately find the combat and inventory limitations to be more than they can bear, Odin Sphere deserves much credit for its artfully elegant approach to a genre that is too frequently weighed down by yawn-inducing cases of déjà vu.
  12. Beyond its quality, its unexpectedness is what makes Odin Sphere doubly special. It came from absolutely nowhere and reminds us that people are still struggling to make the games of their dreams.
  13. Odin Sphere is a rare gem - fans of action games, RPGs or just good artwork are in for a treat. Its mix of gameplay styles is near-perfect and the art on display here will remind you that quality 2D visuals never go out of style.
  14. Odin Sphere is the ultimate non-RPG. You will be immersed. You will be awestruck. You will be inspired to play through every stage again and again.
  15. As a title of epic proportions, Odin Sphere cannot be missed by anyone who owns a Playstation 2.
  16. You can see that this game is a labor of love, which these days feels all too rare.
  17. The depth overwhelmed me for a bit, especially trying to remember all of the alchemy recipes, and some of the boss fights were extremely tough, but the game overall shines and is definitely one of the best, and quirkiest, games on the PS2 out this year.
  18. 88
    Simply put, this 40+ hour adventure, with multiple difficulty levels and extremely deep gameplay mechanics is one of the best RPGs to come out on the PS2 in a while.
  19. Exceptional in looks, sound and story. [Apr 2008, p.78]
  20. In the case of Odin Sphere, however, I am confident that this is a perfect game, and that anyone who comes to it will derive the same. [May 2007, p.16]
  21. So, as you've gathered, Odin Sphere is an incredibly deep, incredibly detailed, spectacularly beautiful game--and it doesn't hurt that it plays like a dream, proving that gaming excellence doesn't necessarily require a third dimension. [July 2007, p.76]
  22. The sweetest eye candy around, low on strategy but alive with punchy action. First-rate. [Apr 2008, p.80]
  23. 92
    To sum up, never have I seen a game so visually pleasing. If you look past the heavy repetition, Odin Sphere is a fun game with solid concepts, along with a great musical score and interesting plot.
  24. Gorgeous from top to bottom, simultaneously old-school and yet nicely updated and an absolute joy to play Odin Sphere is a monumental achievement in art design and execution. Now if we could just get it all in HD.
  25. 90
    With so much focus these days on polygons and lighting effects it is nice to see that some developers can still create a gorgeous experience using traditional methods.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 41 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 17
  2. Negative: 1 out of 17
  1. Jul 30, 2014
    Odin Sphere is almost great. As in it's got everything to be great but falls short. In pretty much every aspect this game ends up feeling a little too clunky and unpolished to truly be a great game, but the spirit is there, that's for sure.

    Combat is addictive and fun and never stops pushing you back to the wall. The swarms of enemies can be a load of fun to beat into a pulp and excel at giving you a sense of constant threat; Simply put, you're never bored with this game's combat.

    The alchemy system offers great variety for fighting, healing and different powerups and options such has halving damage or unlimited power(which is necessary to attack constantly and not get tired). There is an insane amount of time to lose in trying every potion and finding the use of each of them.

    Visuals are excellent and the music and general sound effects are very good too. The story is divided by the tales of five different characters, each of them bringing a new point of view on the world's events, and each of them being the protagonist in their own little story(none of them being short, it usually takes me 6 hours to finish any of them).

    With that said, the weakness of this game shows up in every single aspect I just mentioned.

    For the visuals, while the drawings and many animations are really good, some aren't, and it shows particularly with the cutscenes and the characters' mouth movements. It honestly looks poor. This isn't a big problem but it harms the attention I could give to the story if I wasn't so bothered by how unnatural some movements look.

    For the story, the writing is all about the fantasy: characters speak like heroic fantasy characters and not in any way like real people. This has the merit of reinforcing the game's fantasy side, but it weakens the invidividual characters quite a bit since they don't feel very real. For a fantasy story it might not be a big problem, but it's told by portrayal of five protagonists.

    None of these characters are bad BTW, but I can recall only one that I truly appreciated, the Pooka Prince. Rest ranged from eh to ok I guess. None shoned.

    For the sound, it's ok. Really, I'm always very critical of music and I found this game to be ok, no more. Some themes get boring but never tiring. It's on the good side, but there isn't a song I would listen to out of the game.

    Now for the two really bothersome aspects that keep this game from being great. While the elements cited earlier certainly harm the game, in my eyes especially because the story is one of the stronger points of this game, it's really the clunkiness of the combat and alchemy that give me a lot of trouble.

    For the Alchemy, it's fairly simple: everything relies on you picking up different vegetables and items and mixing them together in a bottle. With one different potion for every letter of the alphabet, so you'll very often have to go back into the menu to see what potions you can make with one ingredients. That's a time loss.
    Then you have to take care of the mixing itself: pick an empty bottle, fill it up with certain items, and then add your final ingredient. Except it's terribly long to make. You go in the menu, select the bottle, select your first ingredient you want to sacrifice, and mix. The bottle falls on the ground. Pick it up, go in the menu, find the bottle again, select the second item, the bottle falls again.
    When you have to add 8 random items plus a final ingredient to make just one potion, that shouldn't take you to pick up the same bottle and re-select it 8 times!
    To say the least this is long and unpleasantly designed.

    Then there is the combat. The biggest problem I have is the control. You will face enemies in midair that demand good jumping controls, which this game very sorely lacks. You'll press the button and do a huge jump, and then you'll tap the button and do the same jump. To attack an enemy just a little above you, you have to do this huge jump up and hit it on the way down, as the input lag can sometimes forget your command to jump if you press the attack button right after the jump button.

    Some bosses such as Wagner or the sorcerers are outright dickish with attacks that are extremely hard to avoid if not impossible, or immediate teleportation as soon as you hit them. There is nothing more frustrating than constantly trying to just do a simple 4-combo attack and be surprised by a miniboss that literally teleports above you and deals a huge amount of damage. The crazy number of enemies in both normal fights and boss fights is the worst: sometimes, you'll get swarmed by literally 15 foes at the same time, and good luck dodging that with bad jumping and generally imperfect controls.

    To sum up the combat, the biggest problem I have is that OS wants to be hard. It wants to be challenging with lots of monsters, bosses and very fast and varied patterns. But the control is just too clunky for you to face the challenge well enough.

    An almost excellent game that lacks polish.
    Full Review »
  2. May 12, 2014
    Bottom 5 worst game i ever played. It is a side scroller rpg. What the hell. The same button is pressed to attack the animations are lame. There is almost no magic or anything cool about this game. I bought this in 2008 for $20.00 and i overpaid. Do not even let someone pawn this off you. It is so unbelievable that some people ever liked this game and it even got good reviews in game informer. I know by know that game informer is right about half of the time. I don't read them anymore. This game is worst than games that suck. Full Review »
  3. Mar 27, 2014
    The visuals are gorgeous, the game is one of the most aesthetically pleasing titles on the PS2. The story is well written, the voice acting is decent, the mechanics feel satisfying, good replay value. New game plus RPG, so your character and items carry over when you start a new playthrough, that's a big bonus. Full Review »