Once more, Waifu Wednesday arrives, and this time we’re talking about a rambunctious young lady who recently received a sequel. The lady of today is non-other than Reisalin Stout, better known as Ryza, from the Atelier series.
The first Atelier Ryza had quite the holy trinity of waifus in the form of Ryza, Klaudia, and Lila, and as much I would be happy to go on about why Lila is also a top tier waifu, I’m stomping down on my own personal preferences and looking at the ladies through untinted lenses. Which led me to the conclusion that Ryza should be the topic of today’s Waifu Wednesday!
Who is Ryza?
Ryza is a young girl (around 17 in the first game, and 20 in the sequel) who lives on Kurken island with her mother and father. Her parents own a farm and spend much of their time seeing to it and looking after their daughter — or so they would like. Ryza actually spends as much of her time shirking her responsibilities on the farm as possible; constantly seeking adventure and discovery even upon their small island home.
One day while exploring, Ryza and her allies are saved by two future friends that come from the mainland, Empel and Lila. It’s from here that Ryza is introduced to the world of alchemy and its many possible creations. She begins to help out around Kurken Island using her alchemy to assist the townsfolk, while constantly learning new and interesting formulae to develop her skills even further.
While Ryza begins to grow in her proficiency with alchemy, her mother isn’t as enthusiastic about her newfound hobby, and she most definitely isn’t happy with Ryza practicing alchemy in her house. So Ryza and friends venture into the woods once more and build their very own headquarters which they name — Atelier Ryza.
Why do we love Ryza?
It’s quite easy to see Ryza as a girl who is constantly out to satisfy her own needs by dodging her farm-related responsibilities. You could also view how bossy and carefree she is as something negative as well. However, Ryza is always out to help people; everything she does after she becomes a student of alchemy is to help others, even if they don’t know it.
She is always thinking about her friends and never lets them suffer through a problem alone — even it means coming across as a nosey eavesdropper who is prying into other people’s business. When Klaudia’s father is adamantly against his daughter adventuring with Ryza, she tries her absolute hardest in order to prove that Klaudia is safe with her.
Lastly *inhales deeply*… Ryza’s design is quite possibly one of the most well-done with regards to knowing your target audience. I hadn’t played any games in the series before Ryza, and when I saw her tomboyish character along with the Zettai Ryouiki, I knew what had to be done. The sequel has only improved on a design I did not think was possible to improve upon — It’s dangerous.
Why you will love Ryza!
At its core, Atelier Ryza is a JRPG that doesn’t stray too far from the classic battle formula but provides a wonderfully easy to understand alchemy system that will have you actively looking for more ingredients to see what you can make next. Just like our leading lady, the game is visually stunning and filled with atmospheric scenery that captivates you as you explore.
If you haven’t played any of the Atelier games that came before Ryza, you have nothing to worry about. The game stands on its own with a self-contained story that perfectly introduces you to the world of alchemy. And if you want to explore the series further after that, well, we got you covered there.
The first game will send you out on a journey with Ryza to save Kurken from an unexpected threat. The sequel hits the ground running as Ryza travels to Ashe-Am-Baird and dives straight into a mystery-heavy plot surrounding particular ruins. Throughout these games, you will see the full journey of Ryza transitioning from bratty kid into a top tier waifu.
*whispers* The thigh gap though… (Company-mandated cold showers, starting today. – Ed.)
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