Atelier Shallie

Atelier Shallie Alchemists of the Dusk Sea DX Review (Switch)

Game: Atelier Shallie, Alchemists of Dusk Sea DX
Genre: RPG/ simulation
System: Nintendo Switch
Developers| Publishers : Gust| Koei Tecmo
Age Rating: EU 16+| US T
Price: £ 35.99| €39,99| US $39.99 | AU $60.00|CA $52.91
Release Date: 14th January 2020

Review code used, with many thanks to OnePR

Atelier Shallie was released mid January on the Nintendo Switch. Separately, but also as part of the Dusk trilogy. Earlier, I reviewed the first in the Dusk trilogy with Atelier Ayesha, the Alchemist of Dusk DX. And after that, Atelier Escha & Logy, the Alchemists of Dusk Sky DX. Now it’s finally time to review the third title.

A world on the verge of ruin

Shallie was the only title I hadn’t played before on my Vita, so I went into the game without knowing anything about it. The best way to review a game, right?

Atelier Shallie

The 16th game in the Atelier series and the final one in the Dusk trilogy. In the timeline, it takes place 10 years after the start of Ayesha’s adventure, and 6 years after Escha & Logy. The story of the world of Dusk continues, a world on the verge of ruin, where almost all is covered in sand and void of water.

I was pleasantly surprised when I found that Shallie isn’t one person: there are two Shallies! Like in Escha & Logy, you can choose to play either of them. But unlike that previous title, the first part of the game is totally different because you see it from a very different perspective. Of course, the main objective and the way the story develops stays the same, but for the first four chapters the game is very different.

Atelier Shallie

Which Shallie will you be?

You can choose to play as Shallistera, the daughter of a chief of a small village. She has been sent together with her friend and bodyguard Kortes and his father to find help for the draught that has hit her hometown. They sail the Dusk sea to Stellard, trying to find help. Shallistera is a shy and quiet girl, but very determined to do the right thing. For her own clan and the people in Stellard too.

You can also play as Shalotte. A girl who runs her own atelier in the place of her late father and lives together with her devoted mother. She lacks knowledge and experience, so she can only accept minor requests to earn money. But she is determined, and dreams about succeeding and amassing a great amount of money.

Atelier Shallie

Each of the girls has her own strengths. Shallistera will have better synthesis, while Shallote is more ideal for combat with her special ability. I decided to play the first chapters as Shallistera, because I’m always more drawn to the quiet and shy protagonist. But after a while I couldn’t resist checking out the gameplay with Shalotte, and stayed with her.

I noticed not only a difference in character, but the colouring of the girls and their clothing was very different too. Where Shallistera was clothed and decorated with accessories like I was used to in the Atelier Dusk games, Shalotte had clothes that would fit in our own day and age. Sneakers, colourful clothes and green hair. And check out the jumper her mom has on her shoulders!

Atelier Shallie

No time limit this time

Chapter five is where both heroines come together to continue their journey together. In battles, Shallistera, Jurie and Kortes joined Shalotte. And of course, Miruca and Wilbell where already fighting with her, as did Homura. That’s the fun thing for the fans in Atelier games: many familiar faces show up in Atelier Shallie.

Atelier Shallie

Wilbell, the witch, who is in every one of the three games in the trilogy. Escha makes an appearance, Solle plays an important role and many more. A fun addition to the party was Homura. He is a homunculus treasure hunter who works in the Stellard region. And like the other homunculi, he loves sweets, but he is also very talkative and quick-witted.

Atelier Shallie

The time limit is totally gone in this game, which is fine by me. You get a key quest to do, after which you get additional tasks from which you can choose. It’s called a Life Tasks’ system: check off tasks to progress enough to unlock the next chapter in the storyline. I think that works better than the tasks set in Atelier Logy. Pressing the L shoulder button brings up all the things you can do, and it’s up to you whether you want to focus on battles, synthesis, socialising or doing requests for villagers.

Freely moving camera

What’s new and much appreciated too, is that the camera can move freely. I had really missed that in Ayesha and Escha & Logy, haven gotten used to it in newer games. Very helpful when you are out exploring. Finding lots of items for your synthesis without being surprised by monsters sneaking up from behind.

Atelier Shallie

There are turn based battles again, which I love. And Shallie boasts a nice battle system of power ups and special moves. A new system is introduced called the Burst Gauge. When you successfully attack enemies this gauge fills up, but when you get hit it drops down again. Filling it right up to 100% makes your team go into burst mode. This allows you to attack much more ferociously, doing lots more damage to your foes. Which is very welcome!

Atelier Shallie

Wilbell is once again a very valuable addition to your battle party, and having an homunculi by your side is helpful too. And like in the other games, you reach the areas to explore through the overworld map. This game adds another way of foraging for items: you can also use your pickaxe to mine for stone and minerals. In the end though, it’s just a slightly different way to get materials.

Atelier Shallie

The Synthesis system

The way you synthesise items is once again different from the two other games in the Dusk trilogy. It makes me wonder: who comes up with all these different ways to synthesise? I wouldn’t have held it against them if they had used the same kind of mini game!

Atelier Shallie

Choose your recipe to make and add ingredients, making sure you don’t exceed the cost level. The item cards show up, and you can alter their sequence. This comes in handy, as you can ‘tag’ skills to the cards. And with a fire skill for instance like Early Addition+ (“increases ingredient’s attribute value depending on how close to the beginning it was added”) that gives it a higher effect. But be sure to only add the skill to the card that has the matching element.

I had gotten so used to the system in Escha & Logy that I had a hard time working out what the best way to do it was. But, I do see that a new system ensures that it doesn’t get boring and keeps on being a challenge.

Atelier Shallie


The game runs smoothly and is a joy to play. Beautiful cut scenes, likeable characters and a good storyline are once again a part of this Atelier game. The soundtrack is great and you can change you outfit in the dressing room. This DX version is the ultimate version, including the Plus elements from the Vita version and all DLC released.

Atelier Shallie

You could say that this third game of the Dusk series is the best one, with the movable camera and so many familiar faces that you already know from past games. I however would be hard pressed to choose the one I love most. It would feel like pointing out my favourite child!

Maybe I should conclude that Atelier Shallie offers the most for your buck, as the storylines of the two heroines differ enough for you to play the game twice.

If you like turnbased RPG with crafting included, and aren’t afraid of lots of texts, these three games are great ones to find out if you are an Atelier fan yourself.

Final Verdict: I Like it a Lot

I like it a lot!

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