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Atelier Marie Remake: The Alchemist of Salburg Review – Beginner’s Brew

Atelier Marie Remake is a delightful throwback for fans of the franchise, harking back to its early days. Released over two decades ago, it laid the foundation for subsequent games in the series. While recent Atelier games like Ryza have transitioned to a more traditional open world, Atelier Marie Remake was created at a time when resources were limited, leading developers to get creative with their design.

Like other Atelier games, Atelier Marie Remake is more about becoming a successful alchemist than saving the world from an evil threat. The game features Marlone, also known as Marie, a struggling student. Marie aspires to excel in alchemy, but her academic failures put her plans at risk. As a last resort, she’s given a five-year assignment to manage an Atelier workshop. Her focus is on creating new items by gathering and synthesizing ingredients and using alchemy to modify their properties. The goal is to create an item so impressive that it will astonish her professor.

As the plot suggests, this game’s core objective is alchemy synthesis, and there are no major world-ending threats like most JRPGs. Atelier Marie Remake isn’t a traditional JRPG. It features turn-based battles, but most of the combat is simple, and it’s not necessary for the best game experience. The key here is time management and managing the Atelier workshop.

Marie can venture out of town into the wilderness to gather ingredients, where she encounters monsters that must be defeated. One of the drawbacks of revisiting the first game is its simplicity and basic nature. There are no complex rules for creating alchemy, so it’s all about gathering the necessary ingredients. In later series entries, it was possible to use alchemy to tweak traits and create specific items, even in the form of mini-games, but that’s no longer the case here.

The game also doesn’t seem to focus much on the story. There are few cutscenes, and while there’s a cast of characters that join Marie on her quest, there’s no significant interaction between party members in cutscenes or otherwise. The game puts the story on the backburner, offering a pure, unfiltered gameplay experience. Depending on your expectations, this could be positive or negative. Most character interactions occur in a visual novel-style text box, displaying character portraits with text.

Since the game requires managing resources and time to find an amazing item within its five-year timeline, the remake introduces a new Ultimate Mode that allows the player to continue playing even after the time limit ends. Just like in a Harvest Moon/Story of Seasons game, managing our schedule on a calendar is essential to experiencing Atelier Marie. However, if you’re a fan who wants to keep creating new ingredients and enjoy the loop, the Ultimate Mode might be a suitable alternative.

The game offers the most basic version of alchemy, story, and combat. You can find new recipes to craft and gather the essential materials to make them, but there are no complicated attributes to keep in mind. Managing time is the core experience of Atelier Marie, so you’ll need to figure out when to spend days gathering ingredients or staying at home making items with alchemy. The combat also requires Marie to find characters who can be hired as party members. These characters will require a fee, aside from a select few who fight alongside you for free. This means gathering resources and making money is the game’s essential core. It’s possible to build relationships with these characters to the point where they don’t ask for money, but reaching that level of friendship will require some grinding.

The charm of Atelier Marie Remake lies in its visual style. It offers a chibi visual style where the characters look like tiny, cute humans. I also enjoyed the artwork for these characters, which is shown during conversations. This is perhaps the game’s major positive, serving as a nice stepping stone for fans of the franchise. Since it was the first game in the series, you can play it even if you’ve never played any Atelier games. If you enjoy this enough, chances are you’re going to love the later games, especially the Ryza trilogy.

Atelier Marie Remake is a nostalgic trip, drawing from its franchise roots and presenting a modest alchemy-centric storyline that sets it apart from more traditional JRPGs. While it eschews complex mechanics and significant narrative engagement for straightforward, time-management-focused gameplay, it may polarize players with its simplicity and scarcity of character interaction. This quaint chibi-styled title serves as a pleasant entry point for the uninitiated, yet its charm may be overshadowed for seasoned fans craving the more elaborate dynamics of later installments, like the Ryza trilogy.

Atelier Marie Remake: The Alchemist of Salburg Game Information

  • Price: $49.99
  • Publisher: Koei Tecmo
  • Developer: Koei Tecmo
  • Platform: PS5 (Reviewed)
  • Disclaimer: A review code was given by the publisher


Atelier Marie Remake, a nostalgic JRPG stripped down to its alchemical roots, leans into simplicity over more complex dynamics found in recent franchise iterations. This entry point, with its chibi-style charm and time-management gameplay, may delight newcomers but risks leaving veterans yearning for the rich character engagement of the later Ryza trilogy.

Total Rating

Salal Awan

Salal's main hobby is photography but he is also interested in learning the latest about Technology including Smartphones and PC Hardware. He is the co-founder of Twisted Voxel and always on the lookout for the news.

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