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[PS3] Valkyria Chronicles - Katie's Review

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Kind of a Big Deal
Kind of a Big Deal
I'm making a dent in my pile of unplayed games! One game down, twenty or so to go.

Console: PS3
Developed By: Sega WOW
Published By: Sega

That's right, SEGA actually made a good game for once!

And I'm changing my rating system AGAIN. I'm going with numbers out of ten. There are some things that fall in between great and good, so I'm aggravated lol.

Graphics: 9/10
Storyline: 6.5/10
Characters: 10/10
Gameplay: 8.5/10
Music: 8/10
Overall: 8.5/10

Valkyria Chronicles was, without a doubt, a great game. The setting is the country of Gallia on the continent of Europa, a fictional version of Europe, in the year 1935. Europa is dominated by two superpowers, the Atlantic Federation in the west and Imperial Alliance in the east. Gallia is a small country nestled right in between those two monsters. The two powers soon go to war, starting the Second Europan, and, emboldened by their early success, they decide to invade Gallia for its rich deposits of ragnite, which is a type of fuel used for tanks and other weapons. The main protagonist is Welkin Gunther, a son of the late General Gunther, hero of First Europan War. The game is set up as a book, with different chapters and events that you had to view or play through to move on. There are other 'tabs' that you used to train your squad, read up on weapons, or view extra material.

The graphics were my second favorite part of the game. Everything and everyone looked like they walked straight out of a painting, but it still managed to look somewhat realistic. There was virtually no difference between cutscenes and actual gameplay. Most of the cutscenes were animated, but there were some conversations between characters that had a background, and then each character moving in a photograph-like box. I was especially impressed with how smooth the graphics were in-game, with detailed environments, weapons, and people.

The characters were absolutely fantastic. The main characters were likeable, which is always a good thing, but it was the minor characters that really impressed me. You could pick a squad of (I think?) fifteen from a roster of thirty or so. Each character had a unique background that was kept in the 'Personnel' tab of your book. Every character had personality traits that helped or hindered them on the battlefield, such as Born Leader or Man Hater. When you picked a character to move, they said a unique phrase before it transitioned into real-time. (See gameplay.) They also had other unique sayings before they shot someone, threw a grenade, or saw a friend on the battlefield. I got really attached to a few of them. Another thing that was great about the characters: every single thing they said was voice-acted. The voice-acting itself was passable, but I really heard the emotion in their voices, and each voice was unique.

The storyline was definitely the weakest part of the game. There were some good moments, but many more that made me shake my head. I'm not spoiling anything by saying this, it's in the introduction to the game, but the two main characters fall in love. Fine. But the way they confessed their love to each other was incredibly cheesy. I wanted to cover my eyes. I am kind of spoiling my next complaint, so I'll add a spoiler.
In the end of the game, they showed some information about what happened to each character. The final scene was of Welkin and Alicia (the other main character) ten or so years later. Alicia was the owner of a bakery, and Welkin was a schoolteacher. I was like eh, whatever. But then their daughter comes out. She is the most whiny child I have ever heard, I was extremely annoyed just by seeing her. I hate it when they try to show characters a long period of time after the ending took place, it never fits. It doesn't sound bad when I'm talking about it here, but believe me, it was bad. Actually, I'll show you how bad it was.

The gameplay was great, it was the perfect balance between strategy and action. At the beginning of your turn, you are given a pool of command points that you can use. Moving a ground unit uses one command point, moving a tank uses two, and there are a variety of orders that use different command points, the maximum being three. Once you pick the unit you want to move, you're brought into the game, and you can move your character around any way you want, without being hindered by a grid. Each unit has a different movement gauge, which determines how far that unit can move. Once the movement gauge runs out, you can either use a weapon or end your turn. You can also end your turn before the movement gauge runs out, and you can only use one weapon, once, per turn. If you want to move the same unit again, you get another weapon use, but your movement gauge is less full than it was the first time you move that unit. It keeps depleting the more you use that person. But the next turn, your unit is granted a full movement gauge again. My biggest complaint is you can't do anything when the enemy phase is going on. Your units will fire at a moving enemy automatically if they're facing in their direction, but you can't help them at all. You can't even pause the game, which is aggravating.

The music was really good as well. Their were several tracks, but most of them had one main theme that was worked in. I liked the choice of music for each battle, most fittted the theme of that particular battle nicely. The tracks were recycled, so some got tiring, but overall it was very nice.

Valkyria Chronicles was actually nominated for Game of the Year in 2008, and it was definitely the most surprising game of that year. It was a heck of a lot of fun to play. If you like tactical action-filled role-playing games and don't mind a little sap, this game is definitely for you.


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Post on Wed Mar 31, 2010 3:08 pm by Alexa

reading this make me want to buy it x3


Post on Thu Apr 01, 2010 5:46 am by Katie

You should! It's worth the $20. The only problem I didn't include in the review is it doesn't give you achievement trophies. :/

Edit: Here's a sample of the gameplay:

And here's a trailer.


Post on Thu Apr 01, 2010 11:51 am by Riot

Looks sweet but I have too many games to pass first,maybe some time in the future where I have more free time and no games. Also I never thought trophies were important in PS3 because they took the idea from XBOX, and in XBOX, your achievements determine your coolness while PS3 is just for fun.


Post on Thu Apr 01, 2010 11:57 am by Katie

Mmhm. I don't really care about achievement trophies, but I know some people that say "OMG NO ACHEEVMINT TROFIES" and refuse to play the game.


Post on Thu Apr 01, 2010 12:00 pm by Riot

The heck, I hate how PS3 is becoming more like XBOX, since all games on XBOX have Achievements, some people won't get games the the achievements are too hard to get. Also, a lot of people get points by playing games that easily give you the 1000 points. Tsk Tsk, what happen to the fun in video games...

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