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Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Summoner: You Summoned?
Company: Atlus

Much to the delight of RPG players who’ve grown tired of the swords and sorcery RPG, Atlus is readying yet another entry in the popular and long-running (at least in Japan) MegaTen series later this year with Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Summoner. Much like previous releases, Nocturne and Digital Devil Saga, Devil Summoner brings over a fast-paced combat system and a deep, dark storyline that goes way beyond typical.

You play as Raidou Kazunoha, an investigator in Japan during the 1920’s. Now, this vision of the 1920’s is a little different than what you would expect – something that becomes apparent the first time you meet Gouto, Raidou’s mentor. Oh, by the way, Gouto is a sarcastic, talking cat…

Most of Devil Summoner’s story revolves around Radiou’s work as a private investigator for the Narumi Detective Agency, an outfit that takes the cases that others just can’t seem to solve. The game opens when a young client, Kaya, is kidnapped during a routine investigation. No one seems to know why the girl was taken, or by whom, so Raidou decides to figure it out himself.

As Raidou, you’ll spend most of your time investigating crime scenes and delving for clues. As Raidou gets closer to solving the case, a much darker case begins to unfold, which, of course, means plenty of opposition from groups who don’t want you involved.

Unlike other games in the series, which were more strategy based, Devil Summoner is based more around actions. During battles, you control Raidou as he commands demons to fight at his side, as well as by using his special gun. At any time during a battle, you can pause the game to assess your situation, use items and summon new allies. Once you’ve weakened a foe, you can use a special containment bullet to try and trap the demon and use it for your own purposes.

As with other games, you can either choose to use demons in battle, or sacrifice them using a fusion system. Fusing demons together can produce new, more powerful demons. You can even fuse the products of a fusion to try and create rare, powerful demons. But, as anyone familiar with the series can tell you, this is much easier said than done. While you can produce some incredibly powerful demons through multiple fusions, there is just as likely a chance that you’ll create a useless demon.

So far, Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Summoner is everything you’d expect from the series with a few new twists. Look for a full review later this month.

-Starscream, GameVortex Communications
AKA Ricky Tucker
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