Ys: Memories of Celceta – Review
Follow Genre: Action RPG
Developer: Falcom
Publisher: NIS America
Platform: PS Vita

Ys: Memories of Celceta – Review

Site Score
Good: Fast paced action, music, lengthy, addicting, story is ok, mechanics are easy to pick up
Bad: Fixed camera, occasional bugs, very grindy
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After having played Persona 4 Golden for countless hours, I didn’t think any game could match itself against this system seller. Now, I’m not too sure anymore. Ys: Memories of Celceta proves a worthy competitor in the RPG range of the PS Vita. Let’s take a closer at the newest creation of developer Falcom, who is to thank for bringing us the Ys franchise since 1987.



The game starts off with the not so original problem that the main protagonist Adol has lost his memories. He stumbles around before eventually falling unconscious from exhaustion. After he awakes, Duren, a greedy trader who handles mostly in all kinds of information, greets you and explains that you’ve already met each other in the past. Unfortunately (or maybe luckily, depending how much you can appreciate Duren’s obvious hunger for wealth) Adol doesn’t remember him at all. When Adol receives the assignment to map a forest well known for its dangerous monsters, Duren smells an opportunity to bring in a lot of cash so naturally, he proposes to his amnesia suffering friend to form a team, and so your first party is born. While exploring the map, you’ll find blue orbs which have the power to bring back a piece of Adol’s memory. Doing so, the story unfolds bit by bit and new quests and characters join the scene.

In its whole, the story is nothing extraordinaire but it’ll certainly not keep you from playing. This game is one of those you’ll mostly play for the gameplay mechanics, not for the incredible story. That said, it was still enjoyable to see how the plot turned out.



As for the visuals, there’s again nothing revolutionary to be found here  but the graphics are between decent and good, so it suffices for the most part. Some environments could have been a little more polished up but the majority of the players probably won’t even noticed this due to the fast paced action of the game.


Ys: Memories of Celceta has some nice, whopping songs playing while you’re fighting off evil. They fit the swift tempo of the game perfectly and give that extra oomph when you’re roaming around. Powerful music with occasionally some cool instrumental riffs refrain from becoming tedious and as you probably won’t put this game down easily, that’s worth mentioning.



JRPG’s are often associated with a turn based fighting system. Ys however makes use of a fast paced real time model. Each character has an own skill set at his or her disposal and you can even earn more skills by defeating monsters. A skill can be assigned to a button combination (R1 + triangle, circle, …) which makes it very intuitive to use. Aside from those battle techniques, a personage also has a standard super strong move which will need to replenish over time. It sure comes in handy as the difficulty is not something to be laughed at, especially in the beginning of the game when you’re still quite new to the mechanics.

When pushing the circle button, you can switch between your party members and you’ll be doing this quite often as some chests can only be opened by the experienced lock picker Duren or a passageway can only be cleared by the spear wielder Ozma. The key mapping is freely adjustable so if another button seems more user friendly for a certain task, it’s changed in no time.


The game has a very easy to understand inventory and store system and the components dropped by monsters can be used to fortify weapons and armor. Those monsters come in a lot of different shapes and colors which brings some variation in the otherwise grindy gameplay. Grinding is even more emphasized by the fact that enemies respawn as soon as you leave an area. So if you accidently take a wrong turn and you return immediately to the area you just left, those suckers who found their end at the point of your sword are all resurrected. If you’re not the type who likes to grind, this might be a nuisance. Luckily it’s possible to use “flash” to jump and evade most enemies but this of course, won’t give you any experience.

Something that a lot of people won’t appreciate is the fixed camera. As the most recent Ys game – Ys Seven –  was a PSP game, this Vita version too lacks support for the right analog stick. At first this can prove annoying but you do get used to it after a while. Apart from the fact you’ll have to resist the urge to look around, the fixed camera doesn’t really get in the way of playing in a decent manner though it’d have been an appreciated addition.

There’re some small bugs that occasionally pop up, like my party members who think they’re back in the swinging times of dance and disco as they would spin in circles at an incredible pace. Nothing game breaking to report on the bugs and glitches part though.



The PS Vita finally seems to get some more attention as we can see with the new releases lately. Ys: Memories of Celceta brings a fine JRPG to the handheld users and might even be a new reason for doubters to get the system. Fast paced, addicting and overall very enjoyable to play, Ys is certainly a title that any Vita owner should check out.


Want to buy a copy? Possible shops here and here.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
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VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
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1 Comment

  1. […] To check out our review of the original game for PS Vita please click right here.  […]

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