Trials of Mana is a unique game, in that people are able to build up their party however they’d like. You choose which trio heads out with you and, while certain pairings are recommended to see some extra scenes and segments, any potential party could be viable. There are certain characters who can be useful no matter what build you could be going for and, well, Angela is one of them. While she and Charlotte both fill the role of magic user, Angela’s the only option for ranged offensive magic and the undeniable glass cannon.
This means, from a practical approach, having Angela as a party member could benefit any sort of group. Should someone pick Duran, Kevin, or Hawkeye as the other characters, you have someone dealing a different sort of guaranteed elemental damage to the enemy. If Charlotte or Riesz would be in the same party, the other heroines could rely on their support skills to aid the party or debuff enemies.
Essentially, you get options. A group that would have Charlotte, Kevin, and Angela would let you have Kevin as the tank and attacker, Angela handling ranged attacks, and Charlotte keeping both strong and healthy. Going with Angela, Duran, and Hawkeye, like I did, would let Angela focus on ranged damage and Duran and Hawkeye on melee, with perhaps a Liege Duran keeping the party healthy and a Nomad Hawkeye aiding by inflicting status ailments.
Now, magic users aren’t “necessarily” special. For example, Hawkeye can go down paths that not only deal magical damage, but could even target more than one enemy. (Sending him down the line of a Ninja or Ranger will give him these sorts of spells, if you’re curious.) But Angela is the only one with real oomph behind her attacks, even if they’re costly in terms of MP and time. I went with the Grand Diviner class for her in my run, and her goal is to attempt to decimate as much as possible with spells like Earthquake+, Explode+, Lucent Beam+, Mega Splash+, and Thunder Storm+. All of these are AOE spells designed to damage a large swath of enemies. Not to mention the Doppelganger ability involves creating a copy of her (for 21 MP, which is rather costly) to have both deal non-elemental damage.)
There’s also, well, a matter of heart. Trials of Mana is a game filled with heartbreaking backstories. Angela’s is one of them. Her whole life, she’s been neglected by her mother. She never showed any affection for her. Her teachers attempted to help her learn magic, but she never seemed to work it out and it never seemed to reach her. (It was only one desperation and emotion came into play that things worked out.) She may come across as an attention-seeking brat, but her story shows its all that she had. She couldn’t be a prodigy. Her being pretty wasn’t enough. So, she went for bad attention and didn’t bother. While there’s no drastic, night and day change, we do see her develop her skills, set her mind on a task that she focuses on for the eventual good of everyone, and come into her own.
Basically, Angela can be pretty great. She’s a cool character who can suit a number of parties due to her magical abilities. Especially since her roles can focus on big ticket attacks that could deal a lot of damage to a large area. And, if someone actually chooses her as the main character, they’ll understand why she is the way that she is.
Trials of Mana is available for the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, and PC.