Kyle here, gaming aficionados.
This time, our "distinguished panel of experts" reviews Tri-Ace's norse-inspired epic, Valkyrie Profile.
Here's a little primer on Kyle's RPG Roundtable Reviews rating scale:
|0-1 is the lowest of the low. Basically, don't
even touch the game's box.
1.5-4.5 is below average. You might still like it, though.
5 is absolutely average. Most games are a 5, so don't think this is bad. I mean it.
5.5-9.5 is above average. These are damn good scores, even a 5.5. Definitely pick it up.
10 is the ultimate. If you can't afford the game, consider selling body parts.
|I thought this was kinda really neat, actually.
I mean, there's not a whole lot going on
at once, and what does happen goes pretty
slow. I really had time to digest the plot
sequences in between dungeons. But especially
with the best ending, it got really confusing
by the end, and, also, it's kinda sad, 'cause
everybody dies before joining the party,
I like 'em all, but this one's a 6.5.
|At least there is SOME comfort in that most
of the characters in Valkyrie Profile receive
almost no development past their introduction.
Also, since they are universally obnoxious,
watching their often gruesome deaths prior
to joining the party offered some entertainment.
But the lead players were given FAR too much
personality for my tastes.
I suppose these fellows deserve a 4.0.
|Gau no like Valk'rie Profile gameplay. Me
no like say Valk'rie Profile, neither - it
hard. Gameplay hard, too. Battle not easy
like in most RPG, and me get killed lots.
Timing attacks for combos way too hard for
Gau. And me no like see before fight monster,
neither. The jumping lot of fun, though -
me wish more game have that!
Gau give this 2.0.
|When I heard that this game used concept
art as in-game graphics, I started to worry.
But I shouldn't have - nothing I could conceive
of would have prepared me for just how ridiculously
detailed Valkyrie Profile's character designs
really are. Even the relatively smallish
sprites cannot save this travesty.
If I had to judge, I'd give it a 2.0.
|Most console RPGs have, like, totally bogus
tunes, dudes, and this one is no exception.
There's a couple of major suckage tracks,
both emotional junk and even some of the
normally radical dungeon themes. But enough
of the dungeon tunes are so bodacious that
I'll totally forgive it, especially with
such a mega-cool battle theme that plays
so many times.
I'd crank the volume up to 5.0.
|Well... their opinions basically suck! Here's
If you take their scores and reverse 'em, you'll get a pretty accurate picture.
Like that that twerp Laguna thought the plot was a 6.5? A 3.5 is more like it... kinda sub-standard. But Lacan's nuts with that 2.0 - it may be sprite based, but Valkyrie Profile's sprites are worth at LEAST a 8.0.
Now, for the real low-down on Valkyrie Profile, I'm your man. With an unusual premise like playing the role of a Valkyrie, you'd think that this would have a kick butt story. Well... I hate to tell you, but it doesn't. VP spends too much time in dungeons, and with irrelevant minor characters, for its main stars to really shine. Still, those major characters include some really memorable ones, like Arngrim and Lezard. Musically a mixed bag, VP has some sweeping classic tracks, but tons of filler. Graphically, though... the sprites aren't as detailed as in a lot of other games, but they match the concept art well. And the concept art (used as in-game portraits) is nothing short of the best I've seen in ANY RPG, bar none.
3B-wise, gentlemen... we have a winner. What do you get when you take some of the best babes this side of Xenogears and give their super-high-quality concept art almost constant showing? Whatever type you like, these gals are goddesses in every sense of the word. The sprite style doesn't lend itself to much blood, but there's tons of mayhem, and the beasts, although including a lot of recolors, are awesome.
Valkyrie Profile is a hell of a lot of fun to play - or just to look at for a while. But as an RPG, it falls a little short, especially if you don't manage to get the best ending. This is a gameplay RPG with some awesome characters, but even they can't save the story from bad pacing.
Put together, it's about a 7.5.