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allyourbaseare Nov 6, 2008 (edited Nov 6, 2008)

Right now there is literally one game that could tear me away from Lost Odyssey (until the update, that is) and that is the aforementioned Valkyria Chronicles.  It's got everything!! 

Official Site

- Tactical-RPG goodness?  Check.
- Lush enviroments?  Check.
- Entrancing musical score?  Double check. 

Hitoshi Sakimoto has done no wrong since I started really getting into his stuff, and this is no different.  I can't wait until an official soundtrack is released.

I'm up to chapter two (with one game over!!...  F***ING tanks) and so far it's been quite enjoyable.  The turn-based strategy is very easy to pick up and isn't overly difficult.  The enemies AI is that nice level between "Can i haz gun?" and "OMGWTFBBQ!!"  Even if you do get hit/killed, it doesn't feel cheap.  It's almost like this is the game Battalion Wars should have been.

Did I mention that the game is absolutely gorgeous?  You can tell in the screenshots that it looks pretty but once you've got it up on your HDTV, it's a completely different experience.  The Canvas engine is a remarkable achievement on Sega's behalf and I do hope that they use it in future games.  It'd be a shame to let it fall by the wayside. 

Hopefully my daughter (2 & 9 months) will like this one.  Actually, she might be a little disappointed I'm not playing LO anymore!!  She loved the battles!

Jodo Kast Nov 6, 2008

Carl wrote:
allyourbaseare wrote:

I can't wait until an official soundtrack is released.

Good news, you won't have to wait! It's been released since May.
http://vgmdb.net/album/7796

If you buy it from CDJ, they'll send you something titled "GALLIAN CHRONICLES". The tracklist and catalog number matches the Valkyria Chronicles OST, so it appears to be the same thing.

Wanderer Nov 6, 2008

The game is on its way to me. I've been looking forward to it for months (ever since hearing the soundtrack, actually). Here's hoping it has a great story and characters!

allyourbaseare Nov 6, 2008

So far the characters are your standard JRPG stereotypes, but they are all voiced excellently and play wonderfully.

Wanderer Nov 6, 2008

Eh. Kinda figured they wouldn't do anything new, there... Still, Vesperia did a decent job with archetypes (better than most games do), even if the main story was a bore so I'm hoping for a good distraction with VC. Even more so because SRPGs aren't my favorite genre.

allyourbaseare Nov 7, 2008

Last night was AMAZING (that's what she said!!) wink

Teh wifezorz took teh babeh and I got in about 4 hours straight of VC.  Two missions and a couple of skirmishes later, my team is becoming unstoppable. 

The way you can divide up experience and gold works extremely well given what the system usually is.  Classes level up all at a time - Scouts, Shocktroopers, Lancers, Engineers, and Snipers.  Each one is very exceptional at what they do, but it does take some training and money to get there. 

One of my favourite missions/skirmishes right now is mission 3 where you have to take over an enemy compound.  Pick your 9 units and off you go.  (side note: what amazes me is each unit's personality.  They're all so lively and fleshed out - I feel very compelled to see them exceed)  Of course, I've got my two favourite characters already Aika & Vyse from Skies of Arcadia and one of my snipers is equally awesome.  Largo (lancer) can take down a single tank BY HIMSELF, Rosie just mows over any enemy unit, and Alicia is quite capable of covering large distances, as well as watching out for herself.

There's something so satisfying as a plan implemented perfectly.  When your sniper takes down two or three enemy troops (HEADSHOT!!) in rapid succession, you really feel proud for him/her. 

It's imperative that you take note of your surroundings.  A couple of maps have a watch tower, or a building you can climb and get a clear shot at a bunch of enemy soldiers.  Perfect for your sniper or soldier of choice. 

I can't wait to get home tonight.

Wanderer Nov 8, 2008

After getting a game over twice in the chapter 3 mission, I threw the f-bomb at my television. I haven't done that since... well, the last irritating SRPG I played. tongue

Nekobo Nov 8, 2008

I really enjoyed the demo, so I'll be getting my copy of the game today. Amazon takes forever to ship games. hmm

Amazingu Nov 9, 2008

Wanderer wrote:

After getting a game over twice in the chapter 3 mission, I threw the f-bomb at my television. I haven't done that since... well, the last irritating SRPG I played. tongue

That's the exact reason why I've been holding off on this game.
Reviews I've read all state that it's quite hard, and I'm just not looking for that kind of challenge in games anymore.

XLord007 Nov 10, 2008

I played the demo tonight.  I liked it, but I wouldn't buy it.  Art and music are both goregous, though.

the_miker Nov 10, 2008

Wanderer wrote:

After getting a game over twice in the chapter 3 mission, I threw the f-bomb at my television. I haven't done that since... well, the last irritating SRPG I played. tongue

Chapter 3 was a breeze for me.  However I'm having some issues with a certain battle in chapter 4 (Battle for the Bridge).  I got game over three times last night, and while it's making me a little mad, it's also strangely drawing me in, forcing me to think about what I'm doing wrong.  I actually had a dream about the battle last night so hopefully I can win this thing today.  If not, I'll just have to do some skirmishes to boost my levels first, which isn't a bad thing because I love battling in this game.

Overall I'd say I'm loving everything about the game so far.  The way the story is told is quite unique with the story book approach and the plot itself is progressing nicely and I feel it's going to get pretty emotional later on.  The beautiful art style and overall attention to detail in the game really shines as well.  I actually found the battle system a little strange at first but I'm in love with it now.  A perfect blend of strategy and physically carrying out actions in real-time.  As for the music, my man Hitoshi Sakimoto does it again.  This is easily his best score since Final Fantasy XII.  The first battle theme in the game (1-04, "Desperate Fight") has been stuck in my head all weekend, it's THAT good, especially in-game as it gets you really pumped to fight!  Don't think it's all battle themes though, there are some pretty fine emotional tracks on this as well.  One of them already almost brought a tear to my eye.  Man, there's just something more magical than usual about Sakimoto's music when he scores a non-traditional RPG pretty much by himself (Valkyria Chronicles, Vagrant Story, Final Fantasy XII (he had a little help on this one), and Breath of Fire V).  Anyone else ever notice that or am I just trying too hard to find something?

Anyway, yeah.. I feel Sega has a sleeper hit on their hands with this one.  EASILY one of the best Sega games I've played in.. I dunno, since the Dreamcast days.  If you have a PS3, I highly recommend that you at least give the demo a try.

-Mike

allyourbaseare Nov 10, 2008

the_miker wrote:

As for the music, my man Hitoshi Sakimoto does it again.  This is easily his best score since Final Fantasy XII.  The first battle theme in the game (1-04, "Desperate Fight") has been stuck in my head all weekend, it's THAT good, especially in-game as it gets you really pumped to fight!  Don't think it's all battle themes though, there are some pretty fine emotional tracks on this as well.  One of them already almost brought a tear to my eye.

AMEN Brother.  There are some quite beautiful tracks in the OST.  "Beautiful Gallia" and "Succeeded Wish" come to mind.  Speaking of which, I can't find a vocal-less version of Succeeded Wish anywhere.  It's the same theme that was used in the opening movie, but I find that I'm kind of turned off by j-vocals.  Call it what you will.

Just finished up mission 6, and the difficulty is starting to come into play.  Either that, or I'm just not observing my surroundings carefully enough.  I finally found an area for my snipers to hide behind so they're not just out in the open!, so that obviously helps.  The system feels a little forgiving, seeing as how you can do as many skirmishes as you want and boost your EXP and money that way. 

Mission 4 (the one where you take the enemy by surprise) was actually one of my favourite maps.  If you planned everything just right, by the time the enemy discovers you, you've pretty much decimated their base. 

It's funny, every time I zoom back out to the main map, my daughter says "Where'd you go?"  smile 

I only wish that this game had some sort of online mode where you could go head-to-head with someone.  Good luck everyone!

Wanderer Nov 10, 2008

the_miker wrote:
Wanderer wrote:

After getting a game over twice in the chapter 3 mission, I threw the f-bomb at my television. I haven't done that since... well, the last irritating SRPG I played. tongue

Man, there's just something more magical than usual about Sakimoto's music when he scores a non-traditional RPG pretty much by himself (Valkyria Chronicles, Vagrant Story, Final Fantasy XII (he had a little help on this one), and Breath of Fire V).  Anyone else ever notice that or am I just trying too hard to find something?

Nah, it's not just you. That's when he's at his best. Part of the reason is because he's more ambitious with his major projects, with all the recurring themes and motifs that you usually don't find when the Basiscape cronies are involved. He seemed bored with stuff like Grim Grimoire and Odin Sphere.

I was greatly moved with the way they used the main theme in this game, during the early cutscene that leads into the title.

Amazingu Nov 11, 2008

Wanderer wrote:
the_miker wrote:

Man, there's just something more magical than usual about Sakimoto's music when he scores a non-traditional RPG pretty much by himself (Valkyria Chronicles, Vagrant Story, Final Fantasy XII (he had a little help on this one), and Breath of Fire V).  Anyone else ever notice that or am I just trying too hard to find something?

Nah, it's not just you. That's when he's at his best. Part of the reason is because he's more ambitious with his major projects, with all the recurring themes and motifs that you usually don't find when the Basiscape cronies are involved. He seemed bored with stuff like Grim Grimoire and Odin Sphere.

Excuse me, but how are Grim Grimoire and Odin Sphere "traditional" RPGs!?
Not nearly as traditional as FFXII I'd say.

allyourbaseare Nov 12, 2008

Man, Mission 7....

Spoilers!!  As if taking down that huge tank wasn't difficult enough, they have to throw in miss invincible Valkyrie?!  I finally ended up beating that map with a B ranking, only after I made a couple key changes in strategy (seems like that's how it would go anyway).  Maybe I'll do a couple of skirmishes to boost up my EXP. 

Thanks for the message the_miker.  Hope you had as much success as I did!

the_miker Nov 12, 2008

allyourbaseare wrote:

Man, Mission 7....

Spoilers!!  As if taking down that huge tank wasn't difficult enough, they have to throw in miss invincible Valkyrie?!  I finally ended up beating that map with a B ranking, only after I made a couple key changes in strategy (seems like that's how it would go anyway).  Maybe I'll do a couple of skirmishes to boost up my EXP. 

Thanks for the message the_miker.  Hope you had as much success as I did!

Yeah dude, I just finished mission 7 myself and man that was tense towards the end!  Avoiding psycho Valkyria woman while trying to climb those ladders made my heart skip a beat.  Plus I tried to rescue one of my dead guys who was far off to the left and she kept shooting at me when I tried to run over in that direction.  Not to mention getting my engineer over to Welkin cause stupid tank from hell kept shooting him.  That was like a two hour battle, wtf, if I lost it at the very end I woulda been super pissed.  It worked out alright though, luckily.  I think I need to do a few skirmishes as well, I barely survived that fight.  As a final note, I will say this: THIS GAME IS SUPER ADDICTING.  I thought about it several times while at work today and I couldn't wait to come home and meet my next challenge.  Bravo, Sega.  And as an added bonus, I now have Vyse and Aika from Skies of Arcadia in my squad! smile

-Mike

allyourbaseare Nov 13, 2008

Yeah, I'm doing a couple of skirmishes myself to boost the scounts mainly.  I've heard once they're past lvl 11, they become BRUTAL. 

Were Aika & Vyse just now selectable?  They were part of my initial team. 

lol this game is addicting.  The wife is heading out of town for the weekend and I can't wait to get some serious time in.  See you on the battlefield the_miker!

the_miker Nov 13, 2008

allyourbaseare wrote:

Were Aika & Vyse just now selectable?  They were part of my initial team.

Really?  I've had Aika from the start but I didn't get Vyse until chapter 6 I think.  I know new soldiers become available after key battles but maybe who you actually get is random?

-Mike

Nekobo Nov 18, 2008

Having a blast playing it. I just played through parts of Chapter 7...what an epic battle.

Regarding the cameos, I had Aika right away...and I had wait another chapter to get Vyse. I kept on reloading my save at the beginning of each chapter until he showed up as a recruit..

I like pretty much everything about the game. The endearing, enthusiastic characters, the painterly visuals, the superb Sakimoto score, and the relatively quick pace of each battle.

allyourbaseare Nov 18, 2008

I believe the order you get certain recruits is completely random.  It's probably luck that I just happened to get those two at the same time!

Just passed chapter 8 (two missions) and I've bumped up my Scouts to level 11.  MAN they're awesome! They've "earned" the use of grenade launchers which make for wonderful ways to hit those enemies crouched behind sandbags from a distance.   10 more missions to go!

Herrkotowski Nov 18, 2008

I picked this game up last week and am really enjoying it. I haven't had much time to play it, but I did get some quality time yesterday and am on Chapter 5 at the moment. I just want to know why I haven't heard "Beautiful Gallia" yet, unless of course, I missed it sad.

Nekobo Nov 18, 2008 (edited Nov 18, 2008)

I stayed up all night playing Mission 7. It was very epic indeed.

When Silveria came out and started raining hell on my units, I nearly panicked, lol. Then I realized I could use Welkin, who's immune to her her lance, to provide cover for my units. Good times...

I also love it when Aika says "Bang bang, baby!" when she caps an imperial.

Great game~

Herrkotowski Nov 18, 2008

allyourbaseare wrote:

^^ You'll hear it at the end of Chapter 8 (although it's not played long enough).

Well, I'm glad I didn't miss it. Tonight is chapter 5, and possibly chapter 6 for me.

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