Play Review: Valkyria Chronicles

Play-mag: "Before Final Fantasy haters (yes, they do exist) are turned off by yet another melodramatic Japanese RPG with a gutwrenchingly nauseating romantic sub-plot, Valkyria Chronicles is one too. But skip past the trite storyline and you'll find a very pretty and compelling strategy game.

We won't bombard you with too many details of the plot; suffice to say it's set in a Final Fantasy V steampunk era similar to pre-WWII Europe. The date is 1935 and a great and oppressive power is rising in the East. You take control of a small group of resistance fighters in the West, dealing with the front line of this Empire that is advancing upon their town and country.

With each battle you're given a pool of command points, usually one per unit, which give any unit under your control one move. Selecting them from an aerial map overview, the game swoops into a thirdperson perspective and endows your unit with a basic HUD and a bar for their action points. You only have one attack per move and any movement will deplete your action points, so it's important that vulnerable units finish behind cover of some sort, especially as once you've used all your command points up, it's the enemy's turn to move and fire upon you."

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