Under Your Radar: The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel

The Pulse Towards Tomorrow by Kanako Kotera

It’s time for Under Your Radar! This time, we’ll be discussing The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel (Eiyū Densetsu: Sen no Kiseki in Japan). This is a timely one, because although I played it on Vita, the PC port launches today. It released in 2013 in Japan on PS3 and Vita, but the English release by XSEED was in 2015.

It’s the sixth game in Falcom’s Trails series, and the start of the Erebonia arc. Said arc has two more games, Trails of Cold Steel II and the upcoming Trails of Cold Steel III. The fourth and fifth Trails games take place simultaneously to this one, in the neighbouring city-state of Crossbell, and you get an in-game calendar that allows you to line up the events if you’ve played both arcs. At the time of this writing, it is one of the only three acceptable entry points for the series, alongside Trails in the Sky and the yet-unlocalized Trails to Zero.

You play as Class VII, a special sixth class (not a typo) created at Thors Military Academy in Trista, Erebonia by one of its princes. Unlike the other five classes, which are solely for nobles or solely for commoners, Class VII is a mixture. This is off-putting to some of them at first, because the Erebonian Empire has a very notable class structure. One of them is effectively a foreigner, even. The main character, Rean Schwarzer, is a baron’s son by adoption, being found abandoned in the mountains as a kid. Continue reading

#1 Quick Fix: Supercharged Robot VULKAISER

1QF Logo

It’s been a while since I’ve had anything to cover on #1 Quick Fix. This time, I’ll be discussing Supercharged Robot VULKAISER, a side-scrolling shmup by ASTRO PORT, the developers behind games like ARMED SEVEN and GIGANTIC ARMY. Continue reading

Under Your Radar: Cherry Tree High I! My! Girls!

Radar Logo 2

cthimg_key-art

It’s time for Under Your Radar! Today’ll be a short one about Cherry Tree High I! My! Girls!, which was recently released on Steam by Nyu Media. It is the sequel to the previously-covered Cherry Tree High Comedy Club, but it’s an episodic, linear visual novel instead. It was released alongside an update patch to the aforementioned game that de-Westernized the localization by default (but it left it available as a launch option). This sequel only uses de-Westernized terms. Continue reading

#1 Quick Fix: Elminage Gothic

1QF Logo

I knew going into this one that I’d be out of my element, but I never expected to be as defeated as I was. On today’s #1 Quick Fix, I’ll be talking about Elminage Gothic. You may have no idea what that game is, and you wouldn’t be alone there – I pay attention to niche games and had never heard of Elminage. Some quick research, however, shows that it’s a small series or first-person dungeon crawlers, and this is its fourth entry. This particular entry was on PSP and 3DS in Japan, and Ghostlight has released a Windows port with higher-resolution artwork and in English as of Thursday. Despite going with a higher-resolution, though, I will note that not all artwork is HD – a lot of the backgrounds in town are blurry on my 900p screen.

Elminage Gothic Title Continue reading

My Top 10 Favourite JRPG Boss Battle Themes

Because, like last time, I simply felt like it.

Just like with the normal battle themes, I’m restricting myself to one song per series to avoid flooding the list with different entries from one series, or even one game. I’m also not including final bosses for obvious reasons.

It was actually quite tough to come up with 10 for this list with how many entire series have nothing but bad boss songs, but I did manage eventually, so let’s see what I have here… Continue reading

Under Your Radar: Croixleur Sigma

When knight defenders hold the day,
The sword and scarlet sun array.

When High-born Lords are rulers sworn,
The pale blue moon our flag adorns.

The sun and moon will ne’er ally,
The scarlet and blue do forever vie.

As one ascends, one must abate:
Foundation of our glorious State.

Proud blade and flag do both convene
For naught but serve our gracious Queen.

Radar Logo 2
Croixleur Sigma key_artIsn’t this a familiar sight? Yet again, the day before release, I cover this new version of Croixleur. Croixleur Sigma, or Croixleur Σ if you prefer, is an updated version of Croixleur, which will be available on Steam and DRM-free tomorrow for $7.99, an increase from the original’s $4.99. However, I was told over Twitter that this release replaces the original, so I can only assume that anyone who already has the game will receive this updated version on release. Continue reading

#1 Quick Fix: Agarest Zero

1QF Logo

It’s been a while, but it’s time for #1 Quick Fix! Today, I cover a game whose title differs by region and platform. If you’re in North America and are playing on any platform other than PC, the game is titled Record of Agarest War Zero. If you’re playing on PC or in Europe, it’s titled Agarest: Generations of War Zero. If you’re in Japan, it’s simply Agarest Senki ZERO (literally “Agarest War Zero”)… unless you’re playing the 360 version, which is an enhanced port in Japan named Agarest Senki ZERO: Dawn of War. I’ll just refer to it as Agarest Zero for convenience. Continue reading

My Top 10 Favourite JRPG Normal Battle Themes

I just randomly felt like it, so I made a list of my favourite JRPG normal battle themes. Mainly because I was just thinking about how most JRPGs tend to have that song play a huge role in one’s first impression of a game. So… here you go, I suppose. Before I do, though, some restrictions on the list:

  1. Only one song per series. This includes cases where a game is officially part of a series but doesn’t have the name of the series in its title (Mana Khemia is officially the ninth Atelier game and thus counts as an Atelier entry, for example, but Bravely Default doesn’t count as a Final Fantasy entry, despite the jokes about it being the best Final Fantasy in years).
  2. I’m only counting the first normal battle theme in the case of games with multiple. Some games will pick a normal battle theme depending on the exact situation, however, so those will share a slot. (NOTE: This does not include when the requisite situation is “travel to another part of the world”, since those songs would be the second, third, fourth, etc.) Prologues are also excluded from this (such as Tales of Graces‘ lengthy one with the cast as kids).

Okay, so here we go! I’ll keep my explanations as brief as possible. Continue reading