Review by AlucardX
"One of the most unusual and original rpg's i've played in years"
Out of all the companies out there, Squaresoft rules the RPG market. The only company to actually stand up to Square and ever gives them a run for their money is Enix, well maybe Atlus too, but Enix is probably the biggest. Enix is best known for their RPG series Dragon Warrior, which is one of the most longest running RPG series next to Square's Final Fantasy, but since I've never played a Dragon Warrior game, I'm not sure how good that they are. The first Enix game I played was Illusion of Gaia, which was a downright horrendous Zelda clone. After I played Illusion of Gaia, I lost almost all my faith in Enix. A month later, one of my friends recommended Star Ocean 2, which is an RPG by Enix. I had my doubts, but I still decided to pick it up. When I got home, I put it into my playstation. Not only was I addicted to the battle system, I found myself enjoying the characters too. The game was great, and I gained plenty of respect for Enix. At the end of the summer of 2000, Enix released a little known game called Valkyrie Profile, which was from the creators of Star Ocean 2. As soon as I found out about it, I picked it up, and Enix has triumphed once again.
When I first started playing, I was confused since most of the exploration was side scrolling. All of the town and dungeon exploration is side scrolling. It took me a little while to fully adapt to this, since I've never played an RPG like this since Castlevania Symphony of the Night. The exploration is just like in SOTN, except if you have a door or entranceway behind you, it will give you an option to enter, and when you get into the place that you entered, you will be moving in a side-scrolling way once again. The only place that you don't move side scrolling is on the world map, in which you fly to different places.
Valkyire Profile's storyline is also original. Set in Norse mythology, you play as Lenneth, a Valkyrie who has been summoned by Odin. The gods are at war, and Odin is sending Lenneth to Midguard (the world that the game takes place in) to find fallen warriors to fight by Odin's side and send their souls to Valhalla (the place of the gods). Lenneth uses her spiritual connection to find warriors in the different cities in Midguard, and recruit them to fight at Odin's side. Basically to sum it up, think Xenogears meets Suikoden, and you have Valkyrie Profile.
Valkyire Profile also has a very interesting battle system. For the number of people you have in your party, they each get a button as their command. For example, if press the circle button on your controller, the party member you have assigned to the circle button will attack. If you press circle twice, the person will attack twice. You can make combos out of this system and sometimes you can hit enemies for over 100 hits.
Valkyrie Profile also has a very unique addition to dungeon exploration. If you stand near a wall and press square, Lenneth will shoot a crystal into the wall. You can use the crystal to jump on, and reach a place that you can't normally jump too. If you need to reach a really high place, you can keep shooting crystals and use them as ledges to reach really high places in dungeons. Also, there aren't any random battles, when you want to go into battle, press the X button and Lenneth will brandish her sword. Hit an enemy with the sword and you will go into battle and have the first attack. However, if you just run into an enemy, the enemy will get the first attack.
Valkyire Profile is a lengthy quest that has 3 different endings. The endings depend on which difficulty you choose, easy, medium or hard. Valkyrie Profile might be very unusual in the beginning, but once you get fully into it, you will see how much fun it is.
Valkyrie Profile is little known by most gamers and is very underrated. All RPG fans should definitely check it out. However, if you barely made it through a game like Xenogears, I don't recommend Valkyrie Profile since some of the scenes are long and dungeon exploration is heavy. For everyone else, put your copy of FF9 to the side and play Valkyrie Profile.
Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 01/03/01, Updated 01/03/01
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