|Japanese title||Yggdrasil Labyrinth (世界樹の迷宮, Sekaiju no Meikyū)|
|Years active||January 18, 2007–present|
Etrian Odyssey challenges players with exploring and mapping a vast dungeon. Players navigate through the dungeon a single step at a time, moving and turning in fixed increments. Time passes only when an action is taken, causing movement, random encounters, and combat to all be entirely turn-based. The game uses a first-person view to present the dungeon using a combination of relatively simple 3D graphics for environments and 2D graphics for enemies.
As in the era prior to the inclusion of automatic mapping in the genre, Etrian Odyssey requires that players maintain their own map. However, rather than doing so on a separate sheet of graph paper, players do this by directly annotating (with the stylus) a small map displayed on the DS' touchscreen. The accuracy of the map is entirely controlled by the player, so he or she is free to map accurately or haphazardly. However, since the ability to successfully navigate back out of the dungeon (in order to save the game by returning to town) relies on keeping an accurate map, doing so is highly advantageous.
Like many "classic" entries in the RPG genre, Etrian Odyssey requires players to create their own characters from a number of different character types (classes). Each class has at least one special skill or aptitude. While only five characters can be in the party at a single time, a much larger number can be created and kept in waiting back at the "guild hall". Characters can be switched in and out when in town, so if a given specialty is needed for a specific obstacle, the party can be tailored appropriately. The player customizes characters by allocating skill points to specific skills during level advancement.
Etrian Odyssey II: Heroes of Lagaard was released on February 21, 2008 in Japan as Yggdrasil Labyrinth II: The Holy Grail of Kings (世界樹の迷宮II 諸王の聖杯 ,Sekaiju no Meikyū Tsū Shoō no Seihai), and in the US on June 17, 2008.
Etrian Odyssey series