Shining Ark’s Battle System Works Is Like Valkyria Chronicles Meets Final Fantasy X

By Sato . February 8, 2013 . 5:30pm


Shining Ark’s battle system will be similar to the Valkyria Chronicles system, which Sega calls a “Turn based Action Command Battle”. Rather than a player and enemy phase, both sides will be part of the mix for an ongoing battle flow. The order of the attackers can be seen on the bottom right of the screen.


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An added a strategic twist, is the ‘Move Down’ effect, which lets players play with the turn order kind of like Final Fantasy X. There will be special attacks that can allow the player to dictate the order of the battle. The above image shows enemy A being third in line, but pushed way back to seventh after being hit by the attack. This special ability will come in handy to allow the player to win fights while taking minimal damage.




The ‘Chain Bonus’ can be achieved by doing continuous actions against an enemy, which adds a bonus damage. A good tactic will be to stay near your enemies and keep moving their turns down for multiple attacks and bonuses to go with it.


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Character movements in Shining Ark are limited to the half-circle bar, known as the move-gauge. They’ll be able to continue moving through the battlefield, until it runs out. Additionally, they’ve added the dash feature, which uses up a lot more of the move-gauge, but is much faster and allows the player to be immune from all attacks during the course of the dash. It’ll be a great way to get yourself out of a pinch.



The guarding feature will also use the character’s move-gauge. It can be used to intercept damage and cover allies.


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Most of the attacks are split into regular attacks and ‘Force’ attacks. The basic attacks can be aimed towards several parts of the enemies. It also has a short and long ranged variety, depending on the character and weapon. Force attacks use up your Force Gauge, they are your character’s special attacks which include various abilities and magic.


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Being within vicinity of an ally during your attack will allow for a ‘Link Attack’. Linking your attacks with allies lets them to join the fight to add more damage. Up to four characters can be linked at the same time.



To make it easier to link, the Duo feature allows you to have a nearby ally follow you. Not only will it help for the extra Link Attack damage, but it can also be handy to give extra movements.



Shining Ark also factors character personalities in each battle. Different personalities can bring out different random abilities in your characters. The ability is selected at random and may require something to trigger them at times.



Freed is the protagonist in Shining Ark. In combat, Freed is a magic knight who relies on his sword skill and lightning magic attacks to help his party. His personality type is ‘Leader’ which can be activated simply by fighting alongside allies.


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Freed has many lightning Force attacks, which can also be used to attack enemies from a distance to go with his sword skills to take on enemies in close range.


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When the right conditions are met, Freed can activate his special ability, known as Overmove. When it is activated, Freed will have 3 turns in a row, which can be used to move, attack and support the rest of the crew.


Here’s a look at some of the newly introduced boss monsters:



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Astron uses its mighty forearms to crush all enemies. It can also use a roar to call out reinforcement, so players will definitely want to finish the battle before it gets too hectic. Its powerful stomps will also be something you might want to look out for.



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Haagis has the appearance of something we might see in a monster movie. It flies above the party and uses its long tentacles to attack anything below. It will also pounce on players from the air.


Sega’s Shining Ark will set sail on February 28th, 2013 for the PSP.

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  • Eliézer Dos Santos

    So beatiful. It doesn’t look like a PSP game, looks more like a Vita game. O.o

    • You should look at more vita games then. :|

      • Kevadu

        Seriously, it’s a decent-looking PSP game but it’s still clearly a PSP game. Doesn’t come close to what the Vita can do.

        • Whoomp

          I honestly doesn’t think that the visuals look that much worse than for something like Rangarok Odyssey, Army Corps of Hell, Shinobido 2 or the two Tales of R-games. Though that is more on those games than the Vitas capabilities (just look at Killzone Mercenaries, it’s gorgeous).

          If this just had better lighting, AA and high res textures it could easily pass for a Vita title. Like God Eater 2.

          • Kevadu

            Well you listed some of the worst-looking Vita games, so yeah I guess it’s close to them. But hardware doesn’t actually matter if the developers are phoning it in (and God Eater 2 is more of a PSP game that just happens to also have a Vita version, anyway).

            But you don’t have to go to Killzone Mercenaries to find good-looking Vita games. How about Uncharted, Gravity Rush, Project Diva f, Soul Sacrifice, etc. And no, this game doesn’t even come close to any of those.

  • Eeh… I didn’t play either of those games for the battle system…

  • Also, this sounds more like Trails in the Sky’s battle system sans grids.

    • Kevadu

      Why the heck were you downvoted so bad? You’re right…

      • People are petty. Say something they down like on one article and they’ll follow you to others.

        • M’iau M’iaut

          It also happens when folks see endless arguments across more than one thread as happened tonight. It takes two to dance and we’ve discussed the situation with you before. Let’s please not have such baiting activity again.

          • Someone asking me what the hell is wrong with me isn’t really my fault, but fine.

  • s07195

    Thought that the battle system would be the same as Shining Blade, but looks like there will be some change, as in the turn order. Dash seems useful, since I always hated continuously taking hits while moving.

  • Haseyo

    I love VC’s combat system, my favorite of any RPG. I am very interested.

  • TatsuyaKyo

    Moving 3 turns in a row, eh? Looks like we already have a potential game-breaker in our hands.

    Man, February 28 can’t come soon enough. >_>

    • MrTyrant

      Nothing uncommon, the previous game had a main character that could defeat most enemies alone D:

      • TatsuyaKyo

        Well, Blade never had any real difficulty to begin with. Most of the bosses are essentially mooks that are tougher and hit harder, though they at least require a little strategy. Also, you don’t get any penalty for letting an ally die. It was a fun game, but a harder mode could have made a better challenge.

        • s07195

          My overall thoughts on the game. Though the post-game dungeons were a step up in difficulty.

  • Göran Isacson

    Gotta admit, I really love those bosses. Big, spooky and interactive to a certain degree… just how I like my bosses!

  • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

    PSP had a lotttts of swan song here lol. There are still ton’s of great Jrpg game pooping here and there.^_^

  • Never played a Shining game before. I would love to see a release of any of them in English.

    • All the real Shining games already are

      • M’iau M’iaut

        SF III/2 and 3 would beg to differ. And the Tony games are plenty legit, they are just not of previous styles.

      • Luna Kazemaru

        because you don’t like the new ones they aren’t real lol great logic

    • Andar

      One of my personal favorites is Shining Force Exa. Simple gameplay yet varied enough to stay fun throughout most of the game. Get’s a little ridiculous toward the end though because of the sheer amount of health enemies have.

  • ronin4life

    Is this coming overseas?
    It sounds awesome…

    • JazzyMan123

      It’s SEGA, you do the math.

      • TiredOfMyOldUsername

        SEGA and PSP…

        • eilegz

          so sad, im still waiting for valkyria chronicles 2 and 3 plus phantasy star portable 2 infinity

    • FFmax


  • shogunknight

    See that! Thats what we miss every year! Darn it!

  • Lester Paredes

    Man, I sure hope Sega brings this out in America. Hell, all over the world. It looks amazing. I doubt they will, but for as much as i tell them that I will give them my money if they bring over (insert name of game here), they never listen.

  • Wow this visuals look like they’re on the 3DS. Would’ve nice if they released a higher res Vita version.

  • michel

    Feels like an excellent game. Sword Art Online looks better, but this one could be more interesting, because of the Valkyrish battle system.
    If this comes to the west, my Vita purchase will be further delayed…
    Sometimes I think that the cruelest competitor of the Vita is the PSP…

  • Ayaka

    Holy… this game looks so amazing.

    I would totally like to forget all about it and read this article again and again to keep that feeling of wonderfulness I’m full of right now. Majestic indeed.

  • Chiupon

    i feel like people only read this article because final fantasy and valkyria were referenced…

  • Mavalex

    Both at the same time!? As if I’m not already oozing hype!

  • This game looks really good. Interesting they are shifting back a little bit to their sega genisis routes with a little strategy.

  • raymk

    Looks good, looks like the west isn’t going to get it, looks like I don’t don’t now.

  • omegagemo

    This game actually looks really great! Shame we’ll probably never see it in North America :(

  • hehHxC

    here come’s the graphic fanboys watchout!

  • 60hz


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