Group DescriptionYs (イース) is a series of predominantly action role-playing games by Nihon Falcom. Its first installment, The Vanished Omens (1987), was among the earliest top-down action RPGs. It is currently the largest and longest-running Japanese series in the genre.
Ys games takes place in a medieval fantasy world called Eresia, which has certain similarities to Europe. The title itself is derived from a mythical city in Brittany, France, which was swallowed by ocean. In the game series, Ys is the name of a floating island, home to a mysterious ancient civilization, around which the plot of early installments revolves. The series features a recurrent protagonist, the red-haired swordsman and adventurer Adol Christin.
In Ys games the player usually controls a single protagonist, who gains experience points and levels up by defeating enemies. The distinguishing gameplay mechanic of the series is its action-based combat coupled with top-down exploration similar to those found in turn-based RPGs. A gameplay feature that was particularly common in early installments is "bumping" combat, which allowed action-based battles without the necessity to press a separate action key or button. This, along with recharging health, became a staple gameplay element of the series and led to the term "Ys-like" when describing comparable games.
PronunciationThe series is pronounced as eece, like saying east without a T at the end, not ease.
Information also contributed by Sciere
Front cover for Ys I & II Chronicles
Front cover for Ys V: Lost Kefin, Kingdom of Sand
Front cover for Ys III: Wanderers from Ys
Front cover for Ys: Book I & II
Front cover for Ys: The Oath in Felghana
Screenshot from Ys I & II Chronicles
Screenshot from Ys V: Lost Kefin, Kingdom of Sand
Screenshot from Ys IV: Mask of the Sun
Screenshot from Ys III: Wanderers from Ys
Screenshot from Ys: Book I & II