Soul of the Pure: Differences and Change is the first game of the Trilogy of the Soul of the Pure Series (3 main games, 2 side ones). The game takes place in a distant planet called Zenith, the name of the brother of the God named Creator. Within the planet lie three massive continents, Airionis, Tarious, and Neota. Each land has one distinct race and worships one of the two Goddesses of balance, Divinity, Balance of Unity and Self (Airionis and Tarious) and Purity, Balance of Essence and Soul (Neota). Through major wars known as the “Clash Wars”, all three lands now under the tow of the Goddesses, each want dominance over another. With prophecy foretold, there will be a new “Chosen of Creation” to set the world back to balance by “resetting” life as known. However, even the current Creator has “issues” with this and now, throughout the three games, the main protagonist, Halo, must journey through all the lands and purge them from the Gods in order to bring true balance within the lands, all the while defying destiny and odds.
The gameplay is and Action RPG style, where the characters you control battle on the overworld field as to having a different battle screen altogether. The fights are automatic and real-time, meaning no turn base. The actions taken are of a fighting genre, mashing buttons to attack and special attack, along with dodging and guarding.
There are three gauges you have, one of health (Life-Force), one of Magic (Life-Energy) and one of Fatigue (Life-Chi). Health is obvious, with it gone, you are dead (Particularize is the death condition). When you waste your Magic, you will “faint”, which is a condition where you cannot do anything but are still alive but completely vulnerable to damage (all attacks do 2x the damage). It recharges over time and with every attack, and the lower it is, the faster the recharge, but it still slow enough to make you think twice of exerting it. The Fatigue gauge is a gauge when it is maxed, you do only half damage, receive 1.5x damage, and can be interrupted by any attack. You can guard but cannot counter (explained later). This is increased by attacking, dodging, and taking hits. However, certain specials, like finishers and transformations can only occur by having the Fatigue gauge increased. Most enemies also have two to three gauges, however, the only differences is that bosses do not “faint” when the magic is depleted.
There is the simple attack, and then there is the Special Ability which changes the formation of the weapon to take on different attacking characteristics (i.e. a Two-Bladed long sword separated to two individual long swords). As well, you have Special attacks as where, depending on class, you can perform certain moves learned from both class and the weapon. These can be chained to other Special Attacks; however, though the charge time (depending) is instant, the attack does use more Life-Energy and as such should be used sparingly. Finales are one of the most powerful moves where it can be taught via the weapon equipped. Of course they require not only Life-Energy but Life-Chi as well to be filled. Attacking does increase the Life-Chi gauge.
Guarding and dodging are important to avoid damage. Guarding is simple as pressing the guard button. From there, you can use the control stick to initiate a counter attack and activate it by pressing the attack button. Chain counters can occur if the timing of the attack button is pressed right (flashing on screen). It gets harder and harder till the last correct button is pressed and the counter is performed. As well the longer the chain the more powerful the counter is. Dodging is another aspect by pressing the jump button and the control panel. All of these do increase the Life-Chi gauge except for basic guarding.
The most important thing to note is the classes. You can choose one of three basic discipline classes: Weaponist (close combat weapons), Arsernalist (range weapons), and Alchemist (Spell Weapons and attacks). A forth one added in the third game is Martialartist (Fighting Weapons). From there, you can select a class that goes under that discipline, like a Vanity Dancer for Weaponist, or a Dimentionalist for Alchemist. Upon mastering three of those classes, you can become a Weapon Master Class where you can control up to three classes. If you mastered four, not to worry, you have all of the classes mastered; just only three can be used at once. All characters can master these classes. To master a class, you must maximize the Job Level (I know Final Fantasy), and learn all moves possible in that class (plus up to 4 weapon moves of that class).
There are three different experiences, one of character, one of job, and one of weapon. The Character one is classic beat enemies, level up, gain stats. The Job Level increases the overall base stat of the character (may increase or decrease upon class change) and teaches moves and abilities (some abilities can be carried over to the next class). Finally, Weapon Level is that the more you use it and the more enemies slain by that weapon, the more higher the level it will be. The increase in these levels increase the amount of stats it has when equipped to the character. It also opens it to more customizations of higher levels (which are three types, ability of the weapon, the bonus of the weapon, and the Stat boost of the weapon). Some weapons cannot be customize but all weapons can be leveled up.
Stats are casual, Attack, Defense, Intelligence, Resilience, and Speed (to an extent). There are status effects like poison and such. Abilities of weapons and classes lead to piercing and unblockability. Transformations are unique as that once the Life-Chi gauge peaks a certain point, you can set it back to zero and transform. However, the Life-Chi rises slowly and when maxed, one attack will de-transform you to your previous stage. The overall movement is a 360 degree field.