Ys IX: Monstrum Nox - It's a monster mash
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I’m now onto my third entry in the long-running RPG franchise Ys. I’ve been with Adol Christin through it all. I’ve fought gods as he tried to recover his memory, I stopped the world ending while on an island with a medley of weirdos and now? Well, in Ys IX: Monstrum Nox Adol finds himself basically sucked into a cult. He’s been cursed and changed, possibly forever and is now stuck in unfamiliar territory, fighting a war he never agreed to fight.

Ys IX: Monstrum Nox – “The more things change the more they stay the same”

If you, like me, are a fan of the Ys series then you will know that not much has changed with regards to gameplay. The combat system is pretty much the same as every other Ys title. You assign skills to various buttons, level them up and go from there. Much like every other title, Ys IX: Monstrum Nox has several playable characters.

Each chapter of the game is dedicated to them before you have the full party and it’s a nice design from a storytelling angle. As usual, the storytelling of the Ys games is on point. The city of Barduq and its surrounding areas are full of memorable characters and intriguing locales. The Monstrums are an interesting group of characters. Some of them have truly bizarre backgrounds. Wait until you find out Doll’s backstory.

Another interesting quirk is that each Monstrum has a unique ability. Each of these ‘Gifts’ allows the player to traverse the city of Balduq in increasingly fun ways. Adol has a stylish teleportation ability, which allows him to jump from rooftop to rooftop. Then there is Doll with her third eye, which allows you to see items, enemies etc across great distances and through surfaces. I won’t spoil the rest, but they’re all a lot of fun.

Also, each of the Monstrums has their own style of combat. You have characters who deal with slashing weapons, piercing weapons and then smashing weapons. Depending on which character you are using at which time you will be at an advantage or disadvantage when facing off against enemies. This does mean you’ll have to keep your party balanced if you always want to come out on top in battle.

An interesting change in this title is that there are equipable items that can change characters to different weapon styles. This means you can keep your favourite character around if you. Personally, this meant I’d be able to keep around Feral Hawk, my personal favourite Monstrum.

As I mentioned earlier, what sells this game is not its gameplay, it is its story. As a Monstrum, Adol and his new friends have to take on hordes of monsters. And the only way to break their curse, so that they may finally leave Balduq, is to stop these creatures from entering the mortal realm altogether. Something that supposedly can’t occur unless humanity doesn’t exist. This sounds insane, honestly as a veteran of this franchise now it just sounds like another Tuesday for Adol.

Ys IX: Monstrum Nox is an absolute blast. I loved running around Balduq scaring the locals in my Monstrum form, saving the day like a fantasy vigilante. With vibrant graphics, an excellent score and a familiar, yet engaging, combat system Ys IX: Monstrum Nox is yet another feather in Ys’ cap.

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About The Author


Graham is the founder of GamEir and his knowledge is ever growing whenever it concerns gaming, films, and cartoons. Just don't ask him about politics.

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