Slow Blitz: Valkyria Chronicles Coming To PC

When the first footage of XCOM’s combat spread across the internet, I read several comments comparing it to Valkyria Chronicles, Sega’s tactical RPG from the distant year 2008. I only ever played the demo of the game but that will change when it finally makes its way to PC, although when exactly that will happen isn’t clear. Sega have confirmed that the port is real and that more information will be available ‘soon’, but that’s all for now. Rather than being strictly turn-based, Valkyria Chronicles uses a system called Battle of Live Tactical Zones (BLiTZ), because it’s much more rad than your grandpa’s tin soldiers.

BLiTZ lets you line up headshots and run around as if you were playing a realtime game, but movements, attacks and support moves are limited by action points. The system works well but a quick straw poll (I emailed a friend who loves the Valkyria series) suggests some of the RPG story elements might intrude on the tactical planning, with missions occasionally changing course to incorporate scripted narrative events.

Still, I’m keen to play Valkyria. If only there were some sort of Fire Emblem anthology headed our way as well.

53 Comments

  1. iucounu says:

    Ah, excellent. VK was a really nice game.

    • FeFiFoShizzle says:

      ya i loved this game. totally forgot about it, would love to actually beat it as i dont think i got all that far.

  2. Gap Gen says:

    Given how often Western culture interprets non-Western culture and history, it’s fun to see European history through the lens of non-European creators.

  3. Barchester says:

    This is an absolutely brilliant game. Bought it on a gamble for the PS3 and enjoyed the hell out of it four times. Glad to see this reaching a new audience. Let’s hope Sega brings the second and third to PC too.

    • voorsk says:

      I’m not sure the second instalment would go down well on PCs – the maps were heavily re-used, and were incredibly basic. The third was a return to form, and would probably work, but I wonder if they’d bother taking the time to officially translate it (the translation patch for VC3 was fan-made)

      • Kitsunin says:

        Thankfully it doesn’t matter that much (imo) because PSP emulators work so well, meaning that the first game is the only one folks without a specific console can’t play. I’ve actually been playing VC2 on my tablet flawlessly.

  4. Wowbagger says:

    I got excited when I thought it was valkyrie Profile, and then ho hummed when I saw it was actually this. I’ve played it through on PS3 and it has some egregious difficulty spikes, plus a needless emphasis on completing battles quickly for higher ratings.

    • TimePointFive says:

      The third one has an English patch available and can be played with the psp emulator. It’s excellent!

      • Peter Radiator Full Pig says:

        Nice, ive been wanting to try out some console rpgs. After being disapointed by Xenoblade Chronicles (I hate the combat) ill be looking to this next.

  5. lowprices says:

    Eeeeeeeeeee. I adore this game. It’s got a story that can’t hold a consistent tone to save it’s life, and the difficulty curve is all over the place, but it’s still one of my favourite games of the PS3 era. It’s gorgeous, the soundtrack is brilliant, and the battle system is great fun. Will definitely be picking it up on PC.

    (Also, the characters are hugely endearing, and you’ll hate it when they die. Which, if you’re as rubbish as me, will happen fairly regularly.)

    • SuicideKing says:

      SPOILERS!

      • lowprices says:

        It’s not a story thing, it’s a game mechanic. There’s a sort of permadeath mechanic in there, similar to XCOM or Fire Emblem.

  6. JimmyG says:

    I played it for about eight hours, gosh … 4-and-a-half years ago? Maybe I’m just not a tactical guy, but it didn’t click for me in that time. Part of it was the sensation that I was never playing it right (intensified by hearing that the best players just used weak, fast Scouts and plowed through to each objective), but I also felt like the story wouldn’t get rolling. Maybe I was expecting a more open experience, too, not the disjointed battles connected by menu screens and cutscenes, but that’s my own fault.

    At the same time, I loved the look of it. Still think it’s gorgeous. And I’m glad the PC crowd will get a chance to form their own opinions.

    • Moraven says:

      A lot of tactical JRPGs share the similar narrative method. Final Fantasy Tactics being one of them. Tactics had some location choices but really it was about if you wanted to do side battles or continue to the main story, which VC does also, but told via a journalist’s narrative of the War they put together in a book.

      Do not expect an open CRPG like Divinity: Original Sin. Tactical JRPGs are set scenario maps with some narrative told in between. Some have more exploration than others, but there is usually not much free form exploration. In a way X-Com was the same way.

      I never played to hit the S rank on each battle, which emphasized speed to completion which is why people used Scouts when they could. If you had to take out a Tank, you would need Lancers (bazookas that use explosive Lance projectiles, shot while holding the gun like a mini gun) or your own Tanks. Scouts could get around line of fire with minimal damage and get close enough to headshot the soldiers enough that had higher armor.

      I do not believe there was any achievement or ending based on S rankings. All it did was give your more XP and money, allowing you to unlock stuff sooner. There was repeatable scenarios if you wanted more of both.

  7. Penguin_Factory says:

    I pumped tons and tons of hours into this. I still remember using my heavily upgraded sniper to take down half a level’s worth of enemy soldiers in a single turn. Good times.

  8. colorlessness says:

    VK did allow you to try to field an all-gay army, so there was that.

  9. Moraven says:

    Reason I bought a PS3 when this was new in 2008. Great game that I still need to complete someday.

  10. Hex says:

    Fucking YUHSSSSSSS!

  11. harrylime says:

    great to see that it will find its way to pc, hope it sells well enough for the second and third game to make an appearance our pixelcolliders.

  12. draglikepull says:

    I really wanted to like this game, but the massive difficulty spikes and general opaqueness of some objectives made me give up on it.

  13. haircute says:

    I spent a dark time in my life (about 15 years) fully immersed in jrpgs and anime. I am now sick of the stuff but I want to play this. How anime is it? How many small people are holding gigantic weapons? How many lithe ladies and boys are complete badasses? How much loli bait is in it? Please tell me it is a good and decent game because, man, it looks fun.

    • lowprices says:

      To answer your questions:
      1: Quite, but avoids most of the worst cliches and is surprisingly grounded.
      2: Some, but weapons are mostly fairly realistic (though there are some silly moments).
      3: Quite a few, but the cast is fairly varied overall.
      4: I don’t know what this is, and I’m not sure I want to know.

      It is indeed good and decent, but if anime-style stuff puts you off then this may not be the game for you.

    • David Bliff says:

      The loli bait is largely left out, replaced instead by Japan’s differently-creepy fascination with fascist aesthetics.

    • Uthred says:

      You would have thought somewhere in those fifteen years that you’d notice that “anime” is a medium not a genre

      • DavishBliff says:

        He’s clearly asking how closely it sticks to anime style in terms of storytelling tropes (or cliches). There’s nothing wrong with his questions.

  14. c-Row says:

    I watched the trailer and searched Google for images of VK but I still can’t see any tactical aspect that would make this look like XCOM to me. It looks more like The Bureau to me.

    • Themadcow says:

      In a 3 way run-off of original x com, new xcom and this… I’d out this game ahead of the Firaxis game and a little behind the Microprose / Gollop game. Tactics are extremely important in this game – more so in some missions than others to be fair.

    • fish99 says:

      It’s absolutely a turn based strategy game, very much in the xcom mould.

    • Kitsunin says:

      It is 100% turn based strategy. You might have your characters move and shoot via a control scheme similar to that of a third-person shooter, but the actions you take and the reasons for them in said mode are 100% strategy.

  15. Jimbo says:

    People love this game like kids love trains. I thought it was charming, but a little cumbersome and slow to play. If the PC controls help smooth things out a bit I’ll give it another look.

  16. SlimShanks says:

    I imagine this being like the WW2 version of a Tales game. In any case, FINALLY!

  17. XhomeB says:

    I’d be very interested in this, but that style… I just can’t stomach anime.

  18. Leprikhan says:

    I guess I can play through the game another 5 or 6 times. It’s been almost 6 months since my last playthrough, after all.

  19. Oakreef says:

    This actually looks pretty interesting but how much of the game exactly is composed of cutscenes?

    • Leprikhan says:

      All but a couple of them are skippable. The only annoying bits are the ones that pop-up mid-mission, of which there are quite a few, but you can skip through all of those pretty fast if you want to. “How much of the game” really depends on how good you are at the game itself. Missions can be very long if you take it slow.

  20. Tom Servo says:

    I would play through this again, this is still the only game my wife liked so much she played it even when I wasn’t around. It would be nice if Sega would treat this IP properly for once. Would love to see the other versions come to PC too even though VC2 did reuse maps a ridiculous amount of times.

  21. KDR_11k says:

    I only played VC2 on a Vita, flamethrower APC with an anti-tank soldier inside was ridiculously OP as a tactic…

  22. epmode says:

    By the way, this release is mostly due to the lovely petition ongoing here:

    link to change.org

    According to people IN THE KNOW on NeoGAF, Vanquish, Virtua Fighter 5 Evolution and Bayonetta will also be released provided the response to Valkyria Chronicles is good. So you might want to sign the petition.

    I swear I’m not being paid. I’m just surprised to see this thing get so little press.

    Anyway, the NeoGAF thread with more information is here: link to neogaf.com

    • Ziffy says:

      This person speaks the truth. Sega didn’t just randomly decide to make this port, it’s largely due to this petition that has been going on for almost a year, and that the gaming press ignored (including RPS). So if you want to see more of these, sign the petition!

      And RPS, please, PLEASE make a mention of it this time?

  23. Synesthesia says:

    Nice! I really wanted to try out this one. I’m glad its coming to pc.

  24. JiminyJickers says:

    Nice, I will definitely be picking it up. Unless they pull a Final Fantasy XIII.

  25. Uthred says:

    No mention of the petiton for the port, which is understandable as RPS declined to cover it in the first place

    • epmode says:

      Considering that this port is happening largely because of that petition, perhaps they should reconsider.

    • Moraven says:

      There is a petition for nearly every game on one system only or one region.

      Was this petition on Operation Rainfall level of petitions? How do we know it had much effect on getting the port made?

      • Nissanthen says:

        It was due to the petition, I can’t really say anything besides that.

  26. Gordon Shock says:

    If only they could port Vanquish, now that would be the day!

  27. equatorian says:

    This is great! I’ve only recently bought a PS3 and haven’t gotten around to play this one yet, and now that there is news of a superior version I’ll wait and see. Hope they offer the Japanese version to Asia, too, like with FFXIII. Instabuy if they do that.

  28. jamesm says:

    Seems like a lot of people bounced off VC by trying to play it like X-COM, or only experiencing the demo, which provides zero introduction to any of the mechanics and classes. I bounced off it hard, too. But I now consider it tied with Demon’s Souls as my favourite game on the PS3 and would urge anyone in a similar position to give it another go.

    What worked for me was muddling through the first few missions, then unashamedly watching YouTube videos and referring to the guides online. This helped me finally understand, rather than fight, the play-style that VC asks of you.

    Fast, decisive strikes into enemy territory, to capture their flag. Doesn’t matter if Maria the sniper limps into enemy HQ in a hail of machine gun fire from the shock-troopers who would cut her to ribbons within moments of the next turn. There isn’t going to be a next turn if you’ve timed your run correctly, because you’ll have won.

    Likewise, don’t worry about the game going real time when you move your troops. It just means that you learn to move them quickly and decisively and know where you want them to end up before you select them.

    This rhythm is very different in feel from the slow, careful creep of X-COM, but once you get the hang of it, it’s just as satisfying.

    Yes, the story and characters have some problems (as do some of the mechanics and missions, particularly the DLC), but it does so much more right than wrong, that I was completely charmed by it.

  29. Perjoss says:

    Pretty much the last game I was expecting to come to PC. Really enjoyed this one and was surprised at how in depth it was, iirc even 4+ hours in, the game is introducing at a steady pace new mechanics and layers to the combat and overall strategy. The visuals were fantastic too.

  30. Premium User Badge

    DelrueOfDetroit says:

    Is this the game where it is WWII with werewolves for some reason?

  31. Nissanthen says:

    No mention of the #SegaPCPorts petition is pathetic. Thanks RPS.