Edge Of Convulsion 

HIGH The soundtrack is unbelievably epic.

LOW An overcomplicated battle system that tries to do too many things at once.

WTF I really want a pet Nekaaro.

JRPGs are often some of the densest games out there. Filled to the brim with exploration, systems, and collectibles, players frequently have countless hours to sink into these titles, and Edge of Eternity is no exception. With a vast world to explore and a strong narrative, it has all the makings of a great JRPG. Unfortunately, due to being overstuffed with mechanics, Edge of Eternity proves that there can be too much of a good thing.

Following a high-stakes tutorial-like prologue, Edge of Eternity settles into a plot revolving around Daryon and his sister Selene as they try to rid the land of a mysterious disease called the Corrosion. This plague was released by an alien life force invading the planet in an attempt to have all living creatures bend to their will. The plot is nothing revolutionary, but it’s done well overall — I constantly found myself wondering what secrets Daryon was yet to uncover about these mysterious foes. 

The planet players will explore from a third-person perspective is a beautiful locale. From fluorescent forests to sprawling hillsides, it’s a joy to take in the sights. Though the world isn’t fully open, the segmented areas are large enough and filled with enough enemies and resources to make them feel alive and lived in. With the help of a phenomenal soundtrack that beautifully orchestrates play, I never stopped enjoying what was around the next corner.

Edge of Eternity was created by Midgar Studio, a small development company with only one previous game to its name. With Edge of Eternity, they have attempted to create something on par with the scope of major triple-A studios. It’s clear that Midgar loves JRPGs, and they’ve tried to implement many classic mechanics into their work. While the vision is admirable, it definitely feels like they bit off more than they could chew.

Take, for example, the battle system — it’s a messy, overcomplicated combination of turn-based, grid-based, and active time-based combat. In battles, which are initiated by attacking enemies in the overworld, party members use a multitude of commands such as normal attacks, special attacks, magic, and items. How frequently they attack is controlled by a meter that recharges at various speeds depending on how powerful the chosen attack is. Characters are also placed on a grid system that is ostensibly meant to supposed to force the player consider positioning.

Despite the many options in combat, I found myself almost exclusively using normal attacks with the occasional powered-up sword slash. Magic spells take far too long to power up, and because of their slow start-up time, the spellcasters are easy targets for strong enemy attacks because they can’t dodge to an adjacent space while charging. 

The grid system, while occasionally cleverly deployed in boss battles, unnecessarily prolongs ordinary encounters. Enemies will commonly move away from party members for no strategic reason, forcing the player to waste a turn chasing them down to land a hit. These issues coupled with a confusing grid-based power-up system for weapons and a level-up system for weapons, make combat an overcomplicated hassle.

Though the overworld is clean and polished, the same can’t be said for the character models. Even in pre-rendered cutscenes, characters look like they’re from the PS3 era thanks to rough textures and less-than-lively facial expressions. Though the strong voice acting performances are a plus, the generally weak non-environmental visuals distract from the story’s emotional moments.

I’ve already listed several, but there are plenty of other minor grievances that make the experience less enjoyable than it could be. The camera frequently gets fussy when battles are conducted in tight places. There’s no way to jump in the overworld, and sometimes Daryon’s progress is halted by a three-foot fence at the edge of town that’s a hassle to get around. There is a team energy meter that doesn’t seem to serve any purpose and rarely gets depleted past 90%. None of these complaints ruin the game, but they certainly distract from the proceedings and make it tough to feel immersed in the adventure.

Despite all the rough edges and problems, I am impressed with Edge of Eternity‘s ambition. The developers have some grand dreams on display here, but the fact is that a lack of polish and too many ideas stuffed into one package leave Edge of Eternity an overcomplicated, unfinished product.

Rating: 5.5 out of 10

Disclosures: This game is developed by Midgar Studio and published by Dear Villagers. It is currently available on XBO/X/S, PS4/PS5, Switch, and PC. This copy of the game was obtained via publisher and reviewed on PS5. Approximately 10 hours of play were devoted to this review and the game was not completed. There are no multiplayer modes.

Parents: According to the ESRB, this game is rated T. From the ESRB: “This is a role-playing game in which players assume the role of a soldier battling alien forces on a war-torn planet. Players perform quests and engage in turn-based battles with a variety of enemies (e.g., humans, mutated creatures, demons, robots). Characters take turns using swords, robotic projectiles, and magic spells to defeat opponents. A handful of cutscenes depict characters getting stabbed/impaled; one sequence allows players to sacrifice a prisoner, allowing them to face death via fire. Some scenes depict small bloodstains on floors. The dialogue contains some suggestive material, including innuendo about a pistil, a big sword, and other relations/acts (e.g., “How old are you?…Old enough for your mother”; “When you see her again, tell her that ‘the burrower is digging all the way around’…Is that a secret code for something naughty?”). Some mutant enemies are briefly depicted with exposed breasts and buttocks. The word “bullsh*t” appears in the game.”

Colorblind Modes: There are no colorblind modes.

Deaf & Hard of Hearing Gamers: This game offers subtitles, which can be altered and/ or resized. Audio cues are not required for progression, making this game is fully accessible.

Remappable Controls: Minor controls can be altered such as the camera’s axis and a sprint toggle, but most controls are not remappable. There is no control diagram. The left stick is used for movement, right stick for the camera, X to click through menus, L3 for sprint toggle, and L2/R2 for choosing attack types. 

Alex Prakken
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