Valkyria Chronicles Remastered is a fine example of a game that'll always look bloody lovely because of its art style. When the original Valkyria Chronicles launched on the PlayStation 3 all the way back in 2008, it was a stunner, sporting wistful, superbly crafted watercolour-esque visuals. From start to finish the title was a joy to behold, and the same is true of its PlayStation 4 revival. Kind of.
Again, it's the superb art style that's survived the last decade - not necessarily the graphics themselves. There are a few jagged edges in this current-gen remaster, alongside rough looking textures, and admittedly, some of the environments - which once looked so neat and clean - now look a bit bland and empty. It's been boosted to 1080p resolution and runs at a silky smooth 60 frames per second, sure, but we're still a little shocked to see that such a visual feast has faded ever so slightly. Time's a terrible thing, we suppose.
Of course, visuals certainly aren't everything, especially when it comes to Valkyria Chronicles - a game which more than proved that you can have an incredible looking title that's also brilliant fun to play. It may have lost its sheen a little, but SEGA's strategy role-playing game still offers up a gameplay concoction that's addictive, clever, and heck, even unique.
Mixing strategic positioning with real-time movement, and then throwing in a sort of turn based, third-person shooting mechanic has always looked strange on paper, but it remains as playable as ever - at least, once you've got the hang of it. The process of moving individual characters behind cover or closer to the enemy perhaps seems a little clunky by today's standards, but landing a perfect headshot or successfully sneaking around the back of a tank and blowing it to bits is as satisfying as ever.
One thing that has been made clear to us over the remaster's first 10 hours or so is that, compared to many more modern strategy and role-playing games, Valkyria Chronicles is actually quite a streamlined experience. These days, developers are quick to talk about their project's deep crafting systems and skill trees, but back in 2008, SEGA didn't bother with anything overly complex - and it's strangely refreshing to see. Characters don't level up individually, for example. Instead, all squad members that belong to a specific class level up as one, meaning that grinding beaten battles for experience isn't anywhere near as much of a chore as it could be.
Indeed, numerous strategy titles bog themselves down with so many additional mechanics and optional systems that the core concept becomes buried - and that's simply not the case here. The game has extra components bolted on here and there, but they're never heavy enough to weigh down and detract from the methodical, often tense strategic battles at the heart of the release. In short, Valkyria Chronicles gives its core tactical elements room to breath, and in turn, that creates a surprisingly pure strategy experience.
As it stands, if you're a fan of the original game and have been tempted to run through it again in the past but perhaps haven't found the time, then Valkyria Chronicles Remastered seems like a great excuse to re-enlist with Welkin Gunther's Squad 7. Not much has changed almost 10 years on, and it may have lost a bit of its shine, but its overall quality as a strategy title still stands strong.
You can read our full review before the game releases, but until then, are you looking forward to Valkyria Chronicles Remastered? Did you play the PlayStation 3 original? Fix up your tank and roll into the comments section below.
Never played but loved CodeName Steam on 3ds and heard that is heavily based on this so definitely intrigued at its budget price.
Looking forward to playing this again.
I won't be buying this because I still have it for my PS3 (and VC2 on my Vita) but I thoroughly recommend it for anybody who hasn't played it. It's a gem.
I can't wait to play this
Always been tempted to play this, so I'll probably pick up the remaster sometime this summer.
Loved this game!unsure whether I'd buy it for ps4 unless we get the steel case edition but I don't think we are.
Amazing game though and highly recommended.And at least all the people that never bothered with the ps3 version because it didant have trophies (I really don't understand those people) can now play it too!
Finally! Played demo on ps3. But released in Japan . Loved it!
@ApostateMage same, play 1 on ps3 and 2 on the vita. Love the games. I am more interest in the 3rd game being release in the west. I dont think it would ever happen but with remaster off the first game. Maybe there a chance now.
This game also passed my "do I give a damn about the characters" test that I apply to pretty much any RPG.
I am SO stoked for this. Finally, a remaster I can actually get excited for!
I have VC2 on Vita and loved Code Name STEAM on 3DS (somewhat similar gameplay) and am absolutely positive this will stand toe to toe with my current SRPG darling fave... the great and almighty Fire Emblem.
I may have to pick this up. Like an idiot I sold it years ago and haven't seen a reasonably priced copy since. Here's hoping this will stop the price from climbing any higher
I enjoyed this game a lot and it deserves a ps4 release. The art style is what made this standout when I brought it for the ps3 and the game will test you and make you think about your next move. I loved the alternate world war style.Totally recommend to anyone who loves strategic rpg's. Sega surprised me with just how good this game is much like they surprised me with binary domain which I got for 9 pounds and it's awesome.
I have my trusty 80gb fatty PS3 and VC on disc. I'm sad to hear it looks worse! Is it even worth the upgrade? Does it turn to gold via Vita remote play? I hope so! So conflicted but $30 isn't bad.
I'll always consider the PC version of the game as the "definite" version to play
Never played the original so I'm very tempted. My only doubt is about how a lazy italian like me can enjoy the story since I'll have to read subtitles in english while characters, fighting in central Europe, talk in japanese!
Just after Uncharted 4.. hm I'll get the game when I finish UC4, but I'm definitely picking this up!
@andreoni79 If I'm not mistaken I think this game has dual-audio.
Never played it before but I do like a good SRPG on occassion. Sadly, my backlog is just to large at this point to even consider another game and I have both UC4 and No Man's Sky limited edition on preorder! I am currently running through challenge mode on Ratchet and Clank, and I have to say that Ratchet is an absolute blast and just pure fun. I recommend it to anyone who likes to have fun playing videogames.
@Neolit The story is so great you should finish the game it is fantastic the best story for me. For me it was the best PS3 game and one of the best from all platforms for me.
Already had this pre-ordered a while back. Gonna pre-order Grand Kingdom as well. The game reminds me of Grand Knights History and I just found out today that it was directed by the same guy who was responsible for Grand Knights History.
@WanderingBullet The Europa Edition advertisements I saw specify it comes with A3 poster, artbook, all the dlc and "game in japanese with english subtitles".
I also read 3 previews but none of them talked about audio...
yay ^^ I missed this on PS3 and always regretted it - lookin forward
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