Valkyria Chronicles – Final Thoughts

Here is my second end-of-series final-thoughts for the summer 2009 season, and this time it’s for Valkyria Chronicles. Unlike my last final thought post for Umi Monogatari, I’m just going to write this in point form to save time. I think I spend more time ordering up my points and writing up transitions than coming up with the points.

– The military tactics and action in Valkyria Chronicles is hilariously bad, and this is compounded by the fact that Valkyria Chronicles (the game) is supposed to be a “tactical” RPG. Most of the battles involve attacking the enemy’s strongest defensive position from one direction, and funny enough that works some of the time depending on who’s doing the attacking. It always work for Squad 7, and rarely works for anyone else. Our protagonist Welkin, being slightly smarter than the rest of the soldiers, incorporates two direction attacks some of the time, and that always works. Lack of military tactics aside, what’s even worse was the soldiering practices by both the Gallians and the Imperials. The Gallians, particularly those from Squad 7, have a tendency to stand out in the open. Thankfully for them, the Imperials are terrible shots, and thus they only hit the good guys by accident. The good guys also get injured when they accidentally shoot themselves like what happened to one of the Squad 7 members during the final episode. The bad military tactics and action was the defining feature of the show for me. It certainly made the show look bad, but at least it was in a funny way.

– Speaking of combat, the Valkyrur battles were lacking in the animation department (laggy slow-mo flips, I’m pretty sure it wasn’t my computer that’s lagging), but they were still better and made more sense than the regular military battles.

– Some of the characters in the show felt pointless, particularly that reporter girl and Maximillian’s scheming brother, neither of which ended up doing anything that mattered.

– The pompous Gallian general deserved a much more painful death than being blown up by Selveria.

– Alicia was pretty awesome in the earlier parts of the series with her wide range of facial expressions, but she got handed a restraining order in the second half and all the funny faces were gone, and I find that disappointing.

– LOL Faldio died at the end and nobody bothered to remember him. Nobody. That was both funny and sad at the same time. Maybe this is his punishment for trying to give Alicia a piece of rubble on several occasions.

– Whatever happened to the Edelweiss near the end of the show? It was introduced in the beginning as Supertank, but you don’t even see it towards the end any more. I wanted to see the Edelweiss take on Maximillian’s moving fortress so Isara can take part in the final battle in spirit if not in person. They just all forgot about the poor girl (Isara) near the end too. Heartless bastards.

– In the end, Maximillian actually turned out to be a dumber and more a$hole-ish version of Lelouch, which certainly explains the choice for the seiyu. Comparing him to Lelouch would dishonor to Lelouch, since Lelouch at least ruled the world briefly in Code Geass and was quite the lady’s man, while Maximillian overloaded when a hot girl (Alicia) hugged him and was foiled time after time by a squad consisting of a dozen volunteers and one tank.

– The final battle was overall a letdown. It was both cheesy and unimpressive. I wanted see either Alicia coming to Welkin’s rescue and blasting the crap out of the moving fortress or have the Edelweiss take on the moving fortress in spirit of Isara. Unfortunately, what we got was Alicia getting kidnapped and Squad 7 coming to the rescue. The culminates into a final battle between Maximillian and Alicia+Welkin in which Alicia hugged Maximillian to death and afterwards Welkin and Alicia was kissing while the moving fortress was blowing up… right underneath their feet! Talk about cheesiness and the lack of a sense of urgency.

In conclusion, Valkyria Chronicles was the worst anime series I was watching in the past 13 weeks, but at least it was (unintentionally) funny some of the time and provided me plenty of material to write this post.

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