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Sporting small but helpful improvements, Valkyria Chronicles 3 ditches the school setting of the second game in the strategy-RPG series and instead follows a gang of convicts. What we're talking about: Valkyria Chronicles 3 picks up on the PSP like Valkyria Chronicles 2 before it, but it ditches the schoolkid drama for a darker story that centers on hard-boiled convicts forced to fight as soldiers during the same time period as the original Valkyria Chronicles. Where we saw it: At the Sega booth on the Tokyo Game Show floor. What you need to know: Point in development cycle: Probably alpha. Sega just announced the game at TGS with a January 27, 2011 release date, but we're not sure how long the U.S. will have to wait for a localized version. My take: My main complaint with Valkyria Chronicles 2 is the school setting -- with that gone and the interface tweaked, I'm confident that Valkyria Chronicles 3 is the better game.
Valkyria Chronicles II, the follow-up to 2008's well-received military-themed role-playing game, has only just landed in the West, but a sequel is already well in the works for the East. Early feline escapees tipped fans off that a new game was on the way, and TGS 2010 gave us not only our first look at the title, but the chance to grab hold of the PlayStation Portable and tool around with some new toys and some old mechanics. Our guide explained that Sega is keeping the game's exact story details on the down low for the moment, partly because it's cognisant of not wanting to spoil the experience before it goes on sale, and because the title is still very much in a state of flux. What we do know so far is that the game takes place during 1935 in the nation of Gallia. Two factions clash as their armies wrestle at the meeting point halfway between Ghirlandio and Bruhl. Valkyria Chronicles III will be set during the same war as its predecessors in the series but will introduce entirely new characters. The side you play is made up of members of the 442 unit, currently referred to as "The Nameless," and after some crisis of conscience, the group goes into battle rather than hand over victory.
Valkyria Chronicles 3 is a lovely looking game. Even on the murky PSP-1000 screen, it's clear that Sega has kicked up the presentation several notches for the franchise's second portable outing, and it helps immensely. That's not to say that Valkyria Chronicles 2 was an ugly game -- far from it. It did have a tough act to follow though. The original game remains one of this generation's most attractive games -- thanks to its outstanding use of cel-shading, which gave the 3D graphics a wonderful hand-drawn quality. Obviously, Sega can never come close to matching that look on the PSP, but it's clear that they've spent a lot of time thinking about how to recapture some of the original's style within the system's confines. For one thing, Valkyria Chronicles 3 is much closer in terms of look and feel to the original than the second game was. The story leaves behind the high school trappings of the second installment and returns to the Second Europan War, putting it in roughly the same timeframe as Welkin's story (he can even be glimpsed briefly in the trailer above), with the return to the battlefield serving to darken Valkyria's palette a bit. The blues and whites of the second game have been replaced with reds and blacks, and the heroes are a band of undesirables called The Nameless.
|SEGA Valkyria Chronicles 3 Extra Edition for PSP [Japan Import]||$59.99||See it|
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