Metascore
70

Mixed or average reviews - based on 17 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 17
  2. Negative: 0 out of 17
  1. Mar 17, 2013
    89
    Like the Atelier games before it, it may appeal to a somewhat limited audience, but Atelier Ayesha is a quaint, relaxing adventure that provides a refreshing contrast to high-stakes JRPG melodrama.
  2. Mar 24, 2013
    84
    Atelier Ayesha: The Alchemist of Dusk is definitely a game for lovers of well made Japanese RPG games. Combat is fun, exploration is exciting and interactions with NPC's work well, although sometimes it can be a little lengthy. The multiple endings is a huge treat to the gamers but you definitely need to watch the clock and do some micromanagement if you want a happy ending.
  3. Less of everything that marred Atelier Meruru. One of the best JRPGs of the year so far. [April 2013, p75]
  4. 80
    Atelier Ayesha: The Alchemist of Dusk is easy to pick-up and enjoy, but suffers from a few noticeable flaws that prevent it from being an instant classic.
  5. Mar 13, 2013
    80
    Atelier Ayesha is a game that can give even a cold person warm and fuzzy sensations. Ayesha's journey is worth undergoing for those who love to see how this series continues to improve.
  6. Mar 20, 2013
    75
    The alchemy-infused RPG known as Atelier Ayesha is much like its titular character: unpolished and at times awkward, yet also unquestionably charming and endearing.
  7. Mar 12, 2013
    75
    We could say it's a "Double A", rather than a Triple A, but still it's a step forward that won't disappoint the fans of the series.
  8. Mar 7, 2013
    74
    Trying a little departure from the Atelier's Arland trilogy, Ayesha brings new elements, like a combat system with more options and a revamped item-crafting system. Maybe its visuals are poor in texture quality, but Atelier Ayesha sure feels like a regular entry in the series.
  9. Mar 8, 2013
    73
    A fine tuned JRPG with nice features, well-implemented battle system and interesting cast of characters... but nothing special or revolutionary, however.
  10. Apr 2, 2014
    70
    With its sometimes-impenetrable alchemy system, limited foes, and unfocused story, Atelier Ayesha feels rough at times, though it remains an extremely playable jRPG.
  11. May 28, 2013
    70
    Complemented by a beautiful watercolour and cel-shaded art style, and cloaked in an aura of innocence, this is an enjoyable adventure, but it's let down by some occassionally mundane gameplay, frame rate issues, and voice dub faults.
  12. Apr 5, 2013
    65
    Yes, engine and presentation are old-fashioned. But the mixture of exploration, hunting, gathering and fighting still works. The turn based battle system was tweaked here and there and is more attractive than ever.
  13. Mar 15, 2013
    62
    Atelier Ayesha feels like a middling compromise between what fans want, and what the masses need. It doesn't do nearly enough wrong to alienate its loyal, niche fan-base, but as an RPG it's a lesser game than Rorona and Totori.
  14. Apr 23, 2013
    60
    Well made, but hard to recommend to everyone. [Issue#230, p.78]
  15. 60
    There are some truly fantastic ideas that are here, but the whole thing feels like it should have spent much more time in the design phase. The game’s dearth of compelling content makes the experience a chore, and it’s hard to empathize with any of the characters in any meaningful way.
  16. Mar 12, 2013
    60
    Fans of traditional RPGs will be turned off by the minimal exploration elements; fans of anime babes in skimpy costumes are unable to get their fix, while fans of generic cutesy anime nonsense really don’t command the buying power to make Atelier Ayesha anything more than a niche title.
  17. Mar 6, 2013
    60
    With some fine-tuning and a more effective blending of old mechanics and newfangled, newcomer-friendly ones, Gust may have a top-notch JRPG hit on their hands next time — but only next time, because this time they’ve missed the mark ever so slightly, despite their intentions being in the right place.
User Score
6.5

Mixed or average reviews- based on 109 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 10
  2. Negative: 1 out of 10
  1. Mar 10, 2013
    6
    Atelier Ayesha: Alchemist of Dusk is a decent game at best. Out of all the Atelier titles, Ayesha is the most welcoming to those new to the series. Series devotes will find welcome changes, but a few omitted traits that worked in previous games. The visuals closely resembled Totori, all bright pastel colors, environments varied from forests, to ruins, to floating islands. Character design was shooting for cute over battle equipped the usual for any Atelier game. Ayesha recycles the same set of 10 monsters with different colors and names, though some of the bosses really stood out. Out of all the Atelier games I was most impressed with the character models in Ayesha. Gust always impresses me with the game's BGM, some annoyed me, some tunes I wanted to bask in, others were right where they needed to be. The menus do come with a handy option to swap out BGM tracks for the games of the past as well, which made it easy to shake things up towards the end. Ayesha's story was a bit underwhelming. Gust tried to make things a bit "darker" by implying that because of the mankind's abuse of alchemy, natural resources are non-existent, monsters roam freely and is the reason Ayesha's sister was kidnapped in the first place. However, It seems Keith is the ONLY character that is privy to this information and only through his scenes is it ever brought up. The rest of the cast seem completely content with the way the world is and that Ayesha is practicing alchemy, which was the reason the world is in dire straights. While part of the magic is discovering and progressing the story on your own, I couldn't help but either feel lost at times or completely misguided in the quest dialogue. Some major plotlines could be progressed by battling through a series of levels; taking out a boss and grabbing a flower pedal, while others would be as simple as helping a cow with constipation (ya that happens...). I really wish I didn't have to spin through a new game to check out the character endings, as from the little I experienced, the battles, dialog and events were exciting/intense. The battle system was by far the best and most refined in the series however, only during a boss battle did you ever feel the burn to implement strategy and plan you next moves carefully. The rest were either easy or your party was DOA and it was obvious you were in the wrong place. Like ALL the Atelier games the alchemy process needs a large textbook how-to all on its own... Ayesha is no different. There is some satisfaction to be had when you finally get the process down of planning out the stock yard perks, so you can power pour and not use up any CP creating grade S items with ease, but a more extensive help library would have been much appreciated. You also lose the ability to choose the the item traits from the previous games. Albeit, its easy to get the results you like however I could never really get an item perfectly suited for its purpose. They're literally 1000's of different status effects on what seemed like a never ending list of ingredients.

    Eventually I will get to a new game and speed through to grab those character boss battles but for now Ayesha is was decent niche title fix. I wouldn't go running to the store to grab this off the shelf, however it is a great distraction until better titles arrive for the niche title fan.
    Full Review »
  2. Mar 5, 2013
    9
    Graphically, Atelier Ayesha seems right in the continuity of the Arland series, which means atrocious backgrounds but further refined character modeling/animation. The result achieved thunderstruck me it's almost Tales of Xillia quality level. Gust has made the choice to remove all artworks during dialogs, which is somewhat sad because it means less gazing at the top-notch character design. Nevertheless, the main characters looked fine enough and I stopped worrying about it pretty quickly. Unlike the previous episodes, the framerate do suffer horribly when there are too much NPCs on the screen.

    In terms of gameplay, AA brings a lot of changes to the series. The battles, already a fantastic experience before, are being made even more tactical by allowing you to walk around enemies and attack from behind. The chain skills you can use also vary depending on your position (for example a character can't cover your teammate if (s)he's on the opposite side, but can tell her to concentrate or to recover). As usual, meticulous panning is needed every time you sortie, as the unforgiving hostiles will certainly get out if you don't bring enough healing/offensive items.

    Alchemy has been simplified a lot. Quantities have been equally normed most of the time, you use 1 to make 3, which seems far too simple. I personally fancy the Kafkaesque recipes of the previous Atelier games, which demanded a nearly lunatic mind organization. Furthermore, traits are now automatically chosen. I can no longer add to your creation some super-skill on a rare material you've found in a dark and dangerous cave. Let's say the item you're about to make can have HP+10%, STR+5, SPD+5 or Stats+2, it will actually have one, several or all these traits depending on the quality you achieve. But if own a material with let's say All Stats+5, you can never implement this trait anywhere. Probably disappointing for purists, this new system saves you some efforts and allows you to focus on other parts of the game.

    There are MANY more ingredients than before. I've come across dozens something like hundreds of them! In this department, let's stress that objects now are sorted by groups of quantities, that is to say that objects of same nature quality take only one square in your basket. This is a dramatic improvement over previous baskets, because you can carry more and longer. You can no longer choose at gathering points, but a can choose to gather more or less at each point, which enables you to save time. Your allies also pick additional ingredients time to time as a bonus. This new gathering system alleviates the constraints you had in past games and allows maximum efficiency. Again, this allows a smoother progression in the game.

    As always in Atelier games, the story is limited in time. Each day must be used wisely to achieve as much as possible in the years that compose the game. You'll quickly have to choose between several objectives, generally very far from each other, in order to advance in the story, complete side quests, hunt fiends, gather or deliver, not to menion the mini-events that take place during set period of time. You consequently have to define priorities and make mid/long term plans to win the race against time. Talking of the story, so far I find it less compelling than the others. Ayesha is looking for her missing sister, a bit like Totori was in search for her mother, but it's far less emotionally-packed. It's kind of a mild trade-off between the Totori's moving story and Meruru's eccentricity. In fact, it only makes sense at the very end, when Keithgrif comes to your party. At this moment, the problematic around the essence of alchemy and its legitimacy is very interesting and add some gravity to the final fights.

    The exceptional so Japanese sense of humor is still there character events are wonderful as always. Music is at it finest, with many beautiful tracks and no less than a dozen of battle themes. Difficulty setting is rather weird unfortunately most of the story bosses are no problem for Atelier fans, but post-game bosses crush my maxed characters within 3 turns. On the other hand, I did appreciate the possibility to choose my ending once time is up. You can therefore see every ending you've flagged during the game by reloading your save, which is only normal after all. I does hurt the replay value, but you'll still have to play it twice to see everything. With a sixty-hour long game, it makes tremendous value.

    Even if this newest Atelier probably won't surpass its glorious predecessors, it remains a thoughtfully well-fought game, innovating smartly at the same time. By simplifying alchemy and rationalizing item management, it also makes it easier for newcomers to throw themselves in the series.
    Full Review »
  3. Apr 29, 2013
    2
    As an Atelier games is "decent" enoug to be played, the artwork is amazing and the change of peace is ineresting, but any Atelier fan WILL miss the stuff left out.
    But my negative score is due the obligatory Engrish audio crap.
    Theres only one thing worse than play a nerf'd game on your favoite series, is playing it, Engrish only audio.
    Full Review »