Valkyria Chronicles Remastered Review
Valkyria Chronicles was first released on PlayStation 3 in 2008 and then Steam in 2014. Now, in 2016, Sega is bring the tactical shooter to the PlayStation 4. Is the war worth fighting again? Or should we give peace a chance? Check out this review to help you make your choice!
Valkyria Chronicles Remastered Review
Valkyria Chronicles takes place in fictional Europe during a time of war and turmoil. The Imperial Alliance is facing off with the Atlantic Federation for control of continent. Both of these factions are run by a resource known as Ragnite, a rare resource used to power almost everything. Enter Welkin Gunther and the country of Gallia, a neutral country with large amounts of Ragnite beneath it. Gunther returns home after attending university to check on his sister and friends in his home town. It doesn’t take long for him to be thrown into the fight as the Empire almost immediately attacks his town while he is back home. Welkin is the son of a late great general of the Gallia Army and has inherited his tank. Using his tank, new friends and some quick thinking, he drives the Imperial forces back out of his home town. Winning the battle is only a minor inconvenience to the Imperials and Welkin leaves to the capital to join the fight to defend Gallia.
This is where the game really starts to take off. You get to form an army based on five different unit types. These are Scouts, Shocktroppers, Lancers, Engineers and Snipers. Each unit has its place on the battlefield and bringing one of to many types could result in defeat. Lancers are great for facing tanks but a Shocktrooper can run right into his face and melt him down. A Sniper can take most units down in a shot with a head shot but if any unit catches them they will die. Unit placement, selection and equipment are all important factors to consider when starting a battle. Of course, fighting isn’t the only thing you will be doing with your units, upgrades and equipment will also have to be managed.
During your stay at base you can use experience you earn in battle to level up your soldiers. This isn’t done in a traditional way of X unit gets X kills and levels up. Instead you level up an entire unit together, for instance if you level snipers every sniper you have will level up as well. This is super useful for when you lose a unit and have to replace them. You will also have to choose who gets what upgrades as far as weapons and armor goes. Every unit has different weapons and a couple have different armor, upgrading the right units will play another important role in victory. You also have to remember that Gunther’s Tank needs to be upgraded as well. This will take resources from your soldiers on the ground but if Gunther dies, it’s game over. You can play skirmishes and extra levels to help you earn more EXP and cash for upgrades.
As far as actual combat goes, it is kind of turn based. You start a map with X amount of units you can place and you choose who to bring, minus Gunther who will always be in the battle. After you place your men you will then start the battle. Units can only move as far as their action bar will allow them too, go to far and you might be stranded. You can move units multiple times but their max movement range is reduced each time. Most of the time you will be running your unit to cover or to an angle they can flank an enemy. After you place your unit you can attack and end your turn. After you end your turn the enemy will get their turn. This is when things can get hectic. You might think a unit is safe until the AI decides to throw three units at a single unit and blows their cover. Pushing too far or too fast WILL cost you soldiers in this, don’t forget that.
As far as graphics are concerned the game aged very well. It isn’t necessarily cel shading but instead referred to as a watercolor painting in motion. It runs smooth on the PlayStation 4 with no noticeable frame drops or stuttering. Some of the lines can be a little cheesy (“VEG-TA-BLES”), but it’s never so distracting that you it takes focus away from what’s going on. You will grow attached to the characters in the game and losing one will hurt, war is hell after all.
Fans of the game should certainly go back to it if they haven’t picked it up off of Steam yet and anyone on the fence should give it a go if they like tactical shooters with small RPG elements.