Well at least I can easily understand what to do in this game!
Valkyria Chronicles – Nintendo Switch – Released: 10/16/18 – $19.99
Valkyria Chronicles is a series that I owned on multiple consoles but never got fully invested. I had the PS3 game, the sequel on PSP for a short period of time, borrow the Vita version from a friend, and own 4 on the Switch. Have I finished a single one of them? No. The original was made at a time that I was in high school preparing for college and didn’t have time to really game as often as I wanted. The PSP version came out while I was in my freshman year of college. Revolution I played for a few minutes and never picked it back up and gave back to my friend. Then we come full circle to 4, where I died in the first mission and put it down to play the first game.
Am I terrible at the game? Seems to be the case so picking up the first one I thought why the hell not, it is cheap and since I get a discount from owning 4 why not. Valkyria Chronicles knows what it is and is very good at projecting that to the player. It is the start of a series with clear explanations that has just the right amount of hand holding. I was able to quickly understand what to do and finish objectives with ease. So why did I have a hard time with the other games? I think it is because that hand holding is no longer present and they expect you to have played a previous entry. Which follows up to the hardest thing to accept.
Story is rough to follow, the first game is clear and covers a short period of time but leaves things open ended enough to expand in future entries. Valkyria Chronicles 1 is just about the two major superpowers fighting for a rare mineral known as Ragnite. Welkin, the main protagonist, is stopped by Alicia, a member of the military, on his way to see his sister. This puts Welkin in a tough spot when they are attacked and he has to defend himself. After showing success in small battles he is promoted until eventually they win the war. So a pretty simple game with a story arc that involves a young man that goes from a simple man to a war hero.
The gameplay is where things get a bit interesting as it is a turn based strategy game but also in real time. You control several units, move them to certain positions, attack or defend yourself, then move again if you need to get behind cover after attacking. Each battle plays out this way with different mobile units. This made me play the game a ton since missions are fairly short with the longest one I remember being around 15 minutes long. I am able to easily squeeze in several missions in one bus ride or do one then do something else if I wanted to. The portability made this really easy to pick up and play quickly only downside is that loading can be a bit of a pain.
I honestly am not sure why I never finished this game on the PS3 since I could have easily done like a mission a day or a week even though I was busy. Seeing VC1 on Switch and VC4 on Switch gives me high hopes that the others could follow suit. It is a shame that the series got locked into the PSP with no other releases. We didn’t even get the 3rd game yet we have 4… Then again VC1 and VC3 take place around the same time, VC2 takes place 2 years after the VC1, and VC4 takes place before VC1. While Revolution is just another timeline.
At the price, it is a no brainer to pick up at least the first game since it is an enjoyable experience and has plenty to offer at its currently price point. Will the game series continue? No idea but if you liked 1, it will be hard to obtain the sequel or 3 if you don’t own a PSP/Vita. It is a shame that the series has gotten a bit less hand holding but I enjoyed that for the first game and definitely plan on revisiting 4 at a later date with a review before jumping back to VC2.
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