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Atelier Meruru: The Apprentice Of Arland is the eagerly awaited thirteenth instalment in the Japanese role playing game series Atelier, and is developed by Gust. The Apprentice Of Arland is the third and final game in the Arland trilogy, and is the direct follow up to its predecessors Atelier Rorona: The Alchemist Of Arland, and Atelier Totori: The Adventure Of Arland.
Atelier Meruru: The Apprentice Of Arland revolves around the adventures and curiosity of Meruru, the Princess of a quaint little kingdom called Arls, located to the Northwest of the Arland Republic. Princess Meruru's father, Lord Dessier, strikes up an agreement with Gio, his long-time friend and leader of Arland, for Arls to become part of the Arland Republic. However, Arls is under-developed, but with plenty of so far untapped potential for growth and prosperity. By some brilliant coincidence, Meruru meets the renowned adventurer and recently graduated alchemist Totori Helmond, and forcefully persuades her to take her on as her apprentice so she can help Arls prosper. Join Meruru as she strives to become an alchemist in order to help her kingdom of Arls to flourish, and take part in all of her many fun hijinks and escapades.
Development plays a major part in this game, and is the primary aspect and core system of gameplay. How you progress throughout the story is majorly influenced by how you choose to expand and improve the kingdom, and results in changing the outcome of the story, as well as the appearance of the in-game world you travel through. As you upgrade and develop the areas and facilities around you, even more land will open up for you, just begging you to explore it. Development goes hand in hand with the synthesis system, which allows you to combine the many materials you find on your journeys in order to make completely new items. The possibilities when it comes to item synthesis are almost endless, and mastering the system will become a very important goal as it is key to help develop your kingdom; using the items you synthesise can result in new land appearing, or existing land being completely transformed, and ultimately allowing Arls to prosper.
The battle system in Atelier Meruru has been redesigned to upgrade it into the most strategic battle system possible by the introduction of the Time Card system. Each character that you have joined forces with to help in battle has their own personal and unique set of skills and special attacks, and can provide Meruru with various attacks and assists. For instance, if an ally uses a Support Attack then Meruru can then in turn attack with reinforced attack items, and if she herself is targeted by an opponent then an ally can protect her with an Assist Guard. With such a wide and diverse range of gameplay to delve into, explore, and master, Atelier Meruru: The Apprentice Of Arland has something that can appeal to all lovers of the Japanese role playing game genre. (Cat Emerson)
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Atelier Meruru: The Apprentice of Arland has an intriguing, branching storyline with multiple endings, excellent graphics, great music and well made voice acting (both english and japanese voices are included). Atelier Meruru improves on Totori in nearly every respect. It's not necessary to play Rorona and Totori beforehand, but it's nice to know the background of some of the characters. Highly recommended.
Really good game. Its long if you will fight for the platinum trophy.
Atelier Meruru: The Apprentice of Arland is a brillent game and and a must buy if you like these types of games, or are a fan of the series.