Take me to Valhalla
Illustration: Yours Truly (Myself)

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You know, mythologies are great. All those gods, heroes and legends that come together to inspire, to educate, to warn of danger, to explain why there are four seasons and whatnots. And right now its Forum season thanks to the deity of words, Niorjd.

Alright, my self-insert Norse persona aside, welcome to today’s Open Forum! As usual, I hope you’re having a fantastic day, so let’s waste no time in getting right into it, shall we? This past week I found myself enjoying two tales, that both have Valkyries, both are remakes, both were on my backlog for a criminally long time and both tell a tale that honestly needs to introductions, Ragnarok: Valkyrie Profile and the seriously gorgeous Odin Sphere on the PS3, two games that couldn’t be more different.

VP is not a bad game, but at times is just a bit too slow and it can be pretty vague about things, both gameplay and plot related. Characters you recruit are never fully fleshed out (you get to see how they died, and their bio gives some information on them but many things are never told), maybe that’s on purpose since their lives did end soon and therefore said lives didn’t actually reach that conclusion. And for gameplay, I do like its different combat system that focuses on combining your party members attack to break the enemy guards and create combos (that you even have to time!), but I still don’t fully understand how to execute properly. Also, the sword named Dragon Slayer actually kills dragons in one or two hits and I wish more games named their weapons after what they actually do :)

But I just happened to kill the boss of a dungeon only to find that same foe as a regular enemy on the next, so either I did something very wrong or the game is messing with me. Anyway...

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Odin Sphere, on the other hand, its fast-paced 2d combat with a high focus on chaining regular attacks with abilities (I constantly rack 200 something combos in bosses), and its story draws heavy from fairy tales, including the classics like “waking up the sleeping beauty with a kiss” or “kiss the frog to remove the curse from the handsome prince”. It might sound cliche, but the execution is on point, partially thanks to the excellent characters you’ll get to know, whose paths constantly cross each other (and all play differently from one another). Because of that, the story is told from multiple perspectives and multiple different time periods. Thankfully the game has a great story chart where you can review the events in chronological order, so you can get a reminder of what happened when.

And if all of that wasn’t enough, then there’s the music. And my Odin, that soundtrack... Just listen:

Too bad it’s so short!

Now then, the reason y’all here for, question time!

  • What’s your favorite mythologic tale?
  • What games/movie/etc do you remember being better than they actually are?
  • What projects are you guys working on at the moment?

Now go and Talk Amongst Yourselves! And if you feel like talking with some other peeps in real time, why not join the TAY Discord server? We have fun and games and don’t bite. Usually.