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[XBLA/PSN] Vandal Hearts prequel announced, wins "Out of Left Field" award

LunkerLunker Registered User regular
edited February 2010 in Games and Technology
whut
Vandal Hearts First Look
The M-rated strategy role-playing game series returns with a prequel, and we get our first look.

The original Vandal Hearts came out on the PlayStation more than 10 years ago and its sequel followed just a few years later. It's been a while since we've heard anything about the world of Vandal Hearts, but now Konami is revisiting the bloody series with a prequel, set to be released on Xbox Live Arcade and the PlayStation Network. At the Konami event last week, we were able to get a quick look at the game, but unfortunately we weren't able to see much more beyond a battle demo.

The events of Vandal Hearts will take place before the original game, and newcomers will find that this is an excellent starting point if you're new to the series. For those who are familiar with the previous two games, there will be story elements that will provide more insight into the original storyline, given that this was made with the fans in mind. The fighting mechanics should feel familiar to anyone who's played a strategy RPG before; between the story-driven sequences, violent battles are fought and won. Movement is grid-based, so characters are limited to the highlighted squares for each turn. Each character can carry two weapons, so you can shoot a long-ranged bow or make a melee attack with an axe, depending on the situation. Your party (up to six in the game) takes individual turns as they move around the field like chess pieces, trying to find ways to swarm and conquer.

Characters will have affinities to certain job types, but it's up to you to determine which path you want them to specialize in. Some of the features have been streamlined so that you don't have to deal with a ton of menus regarding leveling and statistics. We were told that your characters will develop based on how you use them. For example, if you make a specific character move around the battlefield a lot, eventually his or her movement will increase. If you use a bow and arrow frequently, the character's long-range attacks become stronger. All of this is happening behind the scenes as you play, so you don't have to deal with the micromanaging.

From watching the short battle, it flows like a standard tactical RPG would, but every game varies. Your characters can counter attacks if they've been hit with the same weapon type that they are wielding. If you're standing next to an ally that's low on health, you can use a turn to swap places to try to save him or her from an impending death. Keeping up with the spirit of Vandal Hearts, blood flows liberally--like a fountain--whenever possible.

The art style has a different look and feel than what you're normally used to when it comes to Japanese RPGs. The portraits are like ink cartoons and the environment gives off a more sinister vibe. This is fitting due to the gory nature of the series, but considering that we didn't get to see much, we're waiting to get a more detailed look at the game. No release date has been set yet, but it's supposed to come out later this year on XBLA and the PSN.

From PR:
Vandal Hearts: Flames of Judgment will be released for Xbox LIVE Arcade for Xbox 360 in August 2009 and the PLAYSTATION®Network in September 2009.

959362_20090413_790screen001.jpg
959362_20090413_790screen002.jpg

Art design: Iffy. Skill-based character building: Promising. Giant geysers of blood: Fully intact!

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Posts

  • Kris_xKKris_xK Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    SRPG Elements? XBLA? Bought.

    I'm such a whore for turnbased strategy titles.

    Kris_xK on
    calvinhobbessleddingsig2.gif
  • RainbowDespairRainbowDespair Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    I missed playing the Vandal Hearts games when they were new so I'd like to give the prequel a chance. If it does well, maybe we'll end up seeing XBLA/PSN ports of the PS1 games.

    RainbowDespair on
  • BiosysBiosys Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    The art is making me shudder right now, but the actual gameplay elements seem solid.

    I'll give this a look later on in development.

    Biosys on
  • LunkerLunker Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    I missed playing the Vandal Hearts games when they were new so I'd like to give the prequel a chance. If it does well, maybe we'll end up seeing XBLA/PSN ports of the PS1 games.

    The first one was a really solid early PS1 game. I had a lot of fond memories of it; it wasn't overly complex and had almost no character customization, but it felt streamlined as a result. Jeanne D'Arc reminded me a lot of VH.

    The second game could have been great but went too far off the beaten path: It had this crazy turn-based system where you would pick a character to move and perform an action with, the enemy would do the same, and the two characters would actually move simultaneously—you could try to predict what the enemy was doing and block his path or move the character the enemy was going to target out of the way.

    Vandal Hearts II battle demo

    Lunker on
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  • BlackjackBlackjack Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    YES.

    Blackjack on
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  • SheepSheep Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
    edited April 2009
    I had the first one for the longest time. Picked it up after a hardcore Tactics Ogre, FFT, Front Mission 3, and Kartia gaming spree.

    I don't remember liking it. Weird battle system and unappealing artstyle.

    Will that stop me from buying this one?

    Hell no.

    EDIT

    After reading Lunker's above post, apparently I had Vandal Hearts II and not the first.

    Also, I suppose this means there is no Vandal Hearts DS.

    Sheep on
  • BlackjackBlackjack Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    I actually liked the idea behind Vandal Hearts 2's combat. It was way too easy to exploit, though.

    Blackjack on
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  • Fig-DFig-D Tustin, CA, USRegistered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Its not often that I think "generic anime" design would look better than what a game is presenting us with, but in this case I'll make an exception.

    Fig-D on
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  • chamberlainchamberlain Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    I hope they bring back the massive fountains of blood from the first Vandal Hearts.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W1Pajl8dMXE

    Arterial spray at 0:55.

    chamberlain on
  • BlackjackBlackjack Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    I hope they bring back the massive fountains of blood from the first Vandal Hearts.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W1Pajl8dMXE

    Arterial spray at 0:55.
    Those are hilariously awesome. They're a series staple. They were in the second game too, and the article says they're here, too.

    Blackjack on
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  • LunkerLunker Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Thinking back, the first game was really ugly as sin, too.
    Blackjack wrote:
    I actually liked the idea behind Vandal Hearts 2's combat. It was way too easy to exploit, though.

    It sounds wonderful on paper, but in practice it always became a bit silly. I remember several maps where I would just leave one enemy alive and keep baiting him along with one spare party member, running in a tiny circle around the map while I used my other characters to scour the map and pick up treasure.

    Lunker on
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  • BlackjackBlackjack Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Lunker wrote: »
    Thinking back, the first game was really ugly as sin, too.
    Blackjack wrote:
    I actually liked the idea behind Vandal Hearts 2's combat. It was way too easy to exploit, though.

    It sounds wonderful on paper, but in practice it always became a bit silly. I remember several maps where I would just leave one enemy alive and keep baiting him along with one spare party member, running in a tiny circle around the map while I used my other characters to scour the map and pick up treasure.
    I would magebait since spells were REALLY strong and enemy mages always went first if there was someone to hit, I would lead one dude until he was JUST into range of a spell and then move him out of the way the next turn so that the spell would hit dead air and the mage would end up wasting MP.

    Blackjack on
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  • jeddy leejeddy lee Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Boughted! This looks so awesome.

    jeddy lee on
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    360
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    DS
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  • BlackjackBlackjack Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    I hope maps are more like Vandal Hearts 2, with lots of secrets and able to be changed and able to be revisited and not like Vandal Hearts 1 where if you miss something you're fucked because you can't go back.

    Blackjack on
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  • TurkeyTurkey So, Usoop. TampaRegistered User regular
    edited April 2009
    I....I like the art.

    Turkey on
  • BlackjackBlackjack Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Turkey wrote: »
    I....I like the art.
    Me too.

    Blackjack on
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  • lionheart_mlionheart_m Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    OMG!!!!

    Bought! But...
    Dammit they have to resolve VH2s cliffhanger!!!!!

    lionheart_m on
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  • LunkerLunker Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Update from GAF:
    Vandal Hearts: Flames of Judgment will be released for Xbox LIVE Arcade for Xbox 360 in August 2009 and the PLAYSTATION®Network in September 2009.

    Lunker on
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  • lionheart_mlionheart_m Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Lunker wrote: »
    Update from GAF:
    Vandal Hearts: Flames of Judgment will be released for Xbox LIVE Arcade for Xbox 360 in August 2009 and the PLAYSTATION®Network in September 2009.

    WTF?!

    Why Konami?!

    lionheart_m on
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  • UnbreakableVowUnbreakableVow Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    FUCK.

    YES.

    UnbreakableVow on
  • FawstFawst The road to awe.Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Yup. Now I have to go back and find my copies. Fuck, I don't have Front Mission 3 any more!!! ARGH! Oh well, I can go back and play 4.

    Bah.

    Maybe one of these days I'll actually play FFT.

    Fawst on
  • UnbreakableVowUnbreakableVow Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    FFT is not a good replacement for FM3.

    Just track down another copy on eBay.

    UnbreakableVow on
  • SheepSheep Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
    edited April 2009
    What's wrong with September?

    Sheep on
  • FawstFawst The road to awe.Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    FFT is not a good replacement for FM3.

    Just track down another copy on eBay.

    So very, very true. FM3 was incredibly fun.

    We need more strategy RPG's like these.
    Sheep wrote:
    What's wrong with September?

    It's not August?

    Fawst on
  • ShadowfireShadowfire Vermont, in the middle of nowhereRegistered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Lunker wrote: »
    Art design: Iffy. Skill-based character building: Promising. Giant geysers of blood: Fully intact!

    This is the most important part.


    Also, I rather like the art...

    Shadowfire on
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  • Fig-DFig-D Tustin, CA, USRegistered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Its not the "art" that bugs me so much as the translation of that style to 3D models.

    Fig-D on
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  • FightTestFightTest Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Art style looks like ass but I have fond memories of Vandal Hearts so I shall pick this up.

    FightTest on
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  • urahonkyurahonky Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Holy mother of shit. I was JUST talking about how they need to make another one of these games. The blood was so awesome in it.

    urahonky on
  • Unco-ordinatedUnco-ordinated NZRegistered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Fawst wrote: »
    Sheep wrote:
    What's wrong with September?

    It's not August?

    It's way too close to silly season (October-November) for my liking as well. It's really not a great time for a RPG to come out.

    Anyway, fantastic news. Just yesterday I was complaining in the sales thread about Konami and how much they utterly suck when compared to their efforts in the last two generations. Now they go and pull a move like this, bravo.

    Now how about we get Vandal Hearts 1 and 2 on the US and PAL PSN?

    Unco-ordinated on
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  • jeddy leejeddy lee Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    I really really like the 3d models. I don't know why. Everything tells me I shouldn't, but I do.

    jeddy lee on
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    Prince of Persia

    360
    Bayonetta
    Fable 3

    DS
    FF: 4 heroes of light
  • UnbreakableVowUnbreakableVow Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    I wonder how long this will be...?

    I mean, isn't this pretty much the first original downloadable strat-RPG we've had?

    UnbreakableVow on
  • LunkerLunker Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    I wonder how long this will be...?

    I mean, isn't this pretty much the first original downloadable strat-RPG we've had?

    There was Band of Bugs on XBLA, which I never picked up.

    Lunker on
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  • DyvionDyvion Back in Sunny Florida!!Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Lunker wrote: »
    I wonder how long this will be...?

    I mean, isn't this pretty much the first original downloadable strat-RPG we've had?

    There was Band of Bugs on XBLA, which I never picked up.

    Played the demo... never looked at it again. Can't wait for this one, I'm an SRPG whore.

    Dyvion on
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  • GrombarGrombar Registered User regular
    edited May 2009
    Grombar on
  • carmofincarmofin Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    gameplay footage:

    http://www.gametrailers.com/player/50594.html

    i see lots of kids...

    carmofin on
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  • GrombarGrombar Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Grombar on
  • TaranisTaranis Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    I'd rather have a remake of the first game.

    Taranis on
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  • GrombarGrombar Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
  • RenzoRenzo Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
  • urahonkyurahonky Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    Ohhhhh shit. This is going to be good.

    urahonky on
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