Konami Digital Entertainment, Inc. discusses the upgraded character advancement and skills for the upcoming tactical role-playing game, Vandal Hearts: Flame of Judgment for Xbox LIVE® Arcade and the PlayStation®Network. Vandal Hearts: Flames of Judgment, the first of the classic strategic RPG series on a next-generation console, keeps the original game’s fast pace and approachable learning curve, while at the same time reflecting the many evolutions the genre has gone through in the last 10 years.
Character advancement in the original Vandal Hearts was simple and clear; fight, level up, and choose an upgrade every 10 levels. This kept the game both fast-paced and versatile, with the player able to customize characters without having to wade through too many menus. Flames of Judgment gives the player a wealth of options for each character, without requiring the player to stop and juggle menus at every upgrade. Gamers can simply play each character the way they want to and they can naturally improve.
Behind the scenes, the game is constantly tracking each character’s actions, and adding to whichever stats they use the most from their Core Skills to Special Skills. As each character progresses, players can look in on their progress on each stat by opening the Party Menu. Casual players can pick up the game and watch as their characters grow, while genre veterans can guide their characters along the paths they choose. For both groups, Flames of Judgment combines the feel of a classic game with the evolved gameplay mechanics of an upgraded title. Please see the new skills below:
Core Skills: The character’s most basic stats are the seven Core Skills, which govern three types of offensive and defensive prowess, plus the character’s reaction speed. Whenever they take, inflict, or avoid a hit, the corresponding Core Skill will gain experience. Additionally, finishing off an opponent grants bonus experience to all seven skills – so that characters don’t run the risk of over-specialization.
Magic Skills: Each individual spell has its own separate skill level, which works in tandem with the character’s Magic Core Skill to calculate proficiency. Gamers can unlock the power of over two-dozen spells, then either build up their favorites, or broaden their training to conjure up whatever the situation demands.
Combat Skills: A skilled warrior knows how to hit from all sides, utilize the terrain, work with allies and draw first blood. By practicing all these maneuvers and more, players will be prepared for any fight.
Weapon Skills: Each character can carry up to two weapons into battle and can switch between them on the fly. They might carry a sword, axe, or dagger for man-to-man combat, a bow for faraway targets, a hammer for whirlwind strikes – just be careful of your friends who are nearby – and/or your own bare fists. Characters can master one weapon, or spread their training across two or more, as the player sees fit.
Special Skills: Each character has one unique ability, something to set them apart. Connor Ganson has a chance to “Frenzy,” and receive a free move when he finishes off an opponent. Gren Silas’ fearsome presence lowers the Core Skills of all opponents within his grasp. Luce Valenci rallies the party’s morale with each critical hit, while Altyria Jono can inspire the party with each defeated foe. Calvin’s magic can hasten his next turn and Tobias has Heaven’s favor, which protects him from one fatal hit in each battle.
Journal: The Party Menu also includes a record of all the people, places and events of the party’s journey. Read it to explore the history of Sostegaria and its people and check back often for updates.
Vandal Hearts: Flames of Judgment will be available this Winter for the Xbox LIVE® Arcade and the PlayStation®Network.
To download screens of these environments and for more information, please visit our media download site at: http://www.konami.com/downloads/.
Konami Digital Entertainment