YvoCaro Plays

YvoCaro Plays: My time at Portia and Atelier Nelke

Another week over, a very busy one at my other job, the one that helps me pay for maintaining this site 😊. It was an okay week, where I had several grumpy days. I can honestly say this doesn’t happen to me often, but this week it was hard to get going. 

Maybe it had to do with visiting our daughter in London during the weekend. We had a great time, but it made me realize the internship is only half way over. She is doing great at her work however, and is holding her own in the metropolis. But in all honesty, I will be happy when she is home again. Yeah I know, mother hen here! 

Well, time to sit down for another YvoCaro Plays. As always, these blurbs are mostly about the video games I’m currently playing. Unedited thoughts that spring up in my mind, mostly game related. And sometimes a random train of thoughts starting with the game and ending somewhere completely different.

It’s only fair to warn you that spoilers sometimes are included. If you like these bits of gaming thoughts you can find the previous ones here.

My Time at Portia impressions

I’m still very much enjoying My Tim at Portia.There is so, so much to do in the game, that I sometimes wonder just how many play hours this game will hog. A good thing, good value for money! The game does lend itself best for longer gaming periods. In a lot of games, requests are often a matter of fulfilling simple requests. Easy money, but that can be a bit boring.

Not in Portia however. Not many of the requests made are just fetch this or bring that, which is perfect. So far, all the requests I’ve had could only be checked off after gathering, crafting basics and then crafting what was asked for. It takes planning, enough machines to do so in the time that is given and of course, gathering the raw materials. And those materials aren’t in one place either. It does mean you have to think of what you’re doing.

Stopping after half an hour of playing, which I often do on my commute, means you have to remember what you were doing when you open the game up again. So I fully intend to remedy that this weekend and put in some good hours of working hard in Portia. 

Let me tell you though, the game is a very complete package!

Atelier Nelke is an entirely different game

Another game I’ve been trying out this week is Atelier Nelke & the Legendary Alcehmists. I knew this wasn’t the standard Atelier fare us fans love and adore. This game has town builder elements too, which I was looking forward to.

I must say though that I haven’t come to grips yet with Nelke’s adventure. So far it plays more like a visual novel than an RPG. The gathering of needed items is automatic, the battles aren’t up to specs either. The fact that the game only has Japanese voices gets on my nerves. Not that I’m averse to other languages, but they tend to deliver all speech in such a hugely exaggerated manner. I’ve taken to toning down the sound.

The town building and economics of running the town could be interesting. This game seems to be a management game of sorts, but I just need to sit down and take some time to figure out how that works. It’s not the most straightforward of town building systems. There’s a lot to take into account.

It might still make the game worthwhile, but at the moment, I’m unsure. So if you haven’t splurged your money on the high game price yet (like I have, sadly) I’d say hold off for now. I will try to figure out what we have here first. 

So that’s it, thank you for reading!


  1. Hi Yvonne, ‘My Time in Portia’ sounds really good!
    I like everything you mention, except the ‘the time that is given’ part.
    Do all the (re)quests have a time limit?
    I usually feel extra pressure/ nervous when that is the case, and it would be such a shame if that is the only reason this game won’t be for me.
    And even if there is a time limit, can you at least choose when to accept a (re)quest? So that you can finish them 1 by 1?

    I thought I read somewhere once that the ‘Atelier’ games have a time limit too.
    That you’re reward depends on how fast you complete certain tasks.
    Have you ever experienced this as a negative Yvonne? Or don’t you notice it when playing?
    I like the ‘town builder’ element to ‘Atelier Nelke & the Legendary Alcehmists’, but the Japanese voices won’t be for me either.
    And the fact that gathering is automatic… Isn’t gathering the greatest joy of video games?

  2. I know exactly what you mean Ronja, I don’t do well under time pressure either. But in Portia, it’s much more laid back. Some simpler requests, like helping out one of the villagers, has a limit of number of days. But nothing awful happens if you don’t meet the limit. And all the major requests are without time limit. Especially the ones that further the story, so no worry there.

    Some of the Atelier games are timed, but in a way that you hardly notice it.It usually doesn’t lead to big problems, but I had it happen once in Atelier Ayesha. I was pretty far in the game, only to find out that I was in no position anymore to meet the ultimate deadline of the entire game. That was a bummer.

    Nelke is different in that regard, but I’m really on the fence still about it. If I had to do it again, I don’t think I would have splurged the money. But I will investigate to see if the town builder aspect is a good one which might be nicely addictive. We will see. If I had to choose my favourite Atelier games, it would have to be Ayesha, or Firis, or Sophie.

  3. Thanks Yvonne, ‘My Time in Portia’ will definitely go on my ‘want to play’ list!
    And I made a note of your favorite Atelier games too.
    Although I don’t need new games right now. I’m having so much fun in Xenobalde 2, Torna!
    I’m upping all my blades, expanding my community and exploring the changed Titans.. reliving good times, haha
    But I’ll probably want a different kind of game after Torna, so ‘My Time in Portia’ could be very well suited!
    I want to continue my farm in Stardew Valley someday too. And I heart good things about Yonder…
    Ys 8 is still waiting for me. My boyfriend played it, liked it a lot, and said it would be perfect for me.
    And I still have Ni No Kuni 2. I tried to begin some time ago, but alas I get pain in my arms very fast when playing on the PS4 (I don’t have that on the Switch)
    I’m so so grateful for the Switch!
    I’m curious how Nelke will hold up after some further investigation.

  4. Nelke feels a bit like a mobile game that isn’t hampered by microtransactions. I am, actually enjoying it, even if the combat isn’t that deep. To be fair, compared to other RPGs, the Atelier series isn’t known for deep battle systems.

    The game gets better as you advance, because you have more choices to juggle. I would recommend trying to complete the tasks asap and also do research. To make money sell the most expensive things your shops can stock. You need to assign people to produce or gather materials, which in turn your alchemists turn into goods.

    1. Ah, that’s good to hear. All I keep reading is negativity about the game, I’m glad to hear someone who is positive about it. I will keep at it, when Portia allows, lol. gotta distribute my gaming time. Thanks for the tips!

  5. My Time at Portia sounds perfect! Still not sure though if i should pre-order to get the bonus stuff, or put the physical game on my wishlist for my birthday next month. I do like to actual own my games. Are the bonus things you get in game worth it?

  6. I just finished Nelke last night. First play-though…was 700 population shy of completing Task 9, lol. Just 700 more people and I could have gotten the good or true ending! But since it gives you an increased multiplier for every playthrough, every time through is easier, so I’ll probably play it through again another time. It’s really fun once you’re in the groove, but when you put the game down, you realize how exhausting and almost stressful it was, and it makes it hard to want to pick it back up again. But then you do, and again have a hard time setting it back down. Funny cycle. 🙂

    1. I’m glad to read your positive thoughts on the game. I haven’t made much progress, but that is mainly due to spending my gaming time in Portia. Have you played Atelier games before? And if so, would you say it’s a good one for Atelier fans? That is, if they expect something totally different.

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