Ragnarok: Princess of Light and Darkness

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For the mobile game, see Ragnarok Tactics.
Ragnarok: Princess of Light and Darkness
Because light and darkness being tactical is super edgy.
Developer(s) GungHo Online Entertainment
Apollosoft Chime
Publisher(s) GungHo Online Entertainment
Aksys Games
Platform(s) PlayStation Portable
Release date(s) 2011 October 27 (JP)
2012 November 6 (NA)
Genre(s) Tactical RPG, Single Player

Ragnarok: Princess of Light and Darkness (Japanese: ラグナロク ~光と闇の皇女~)[1] is a tactical role-playing game for the PlayStation Portable. Also known as Ragnarok Tactics, it is a spin-off of Ragnarok Online.[2] The game was released in North America on 2012 November 6, making it one of the last releases for the platform in the region.[3] Reception for the game was mixed, with critics citing that the gameplay and presentation was solid, but not revolutionary.

Characters[edit | edit source]

Main Story[edit | edit source]

Side Story[edit | edit source]

Story[edit | edit source]

The game's story begins with two nations, Branshaldo Empire and the Aura Republic, at war with each other over possession of an area of land called the Grantria Peninsula.[4] The nations call a truce, but relations remain poor, with the fear of war erupting again constantly looming.[5] The player gets to choose which party they side with, determining which side of the story is told, and which of the five endings to the war is shown.[6]

Story Path/Ending[edit | edit source]

The game is played through the eyes of a silent protagonist named Rito by default, though he can be renamed.[7] The only dialogue from the character results from when the player is presented with three dialogue choices on how to respond to a question, with the possible responses typically shown as a positive, negative, or indifferent answer.[8] The characters that fight alongside Rito vary depends on the path the player opts for him to take. The player can chose to align Rito with either the Branshaldo Empire, the Aura Republic, or not align with either. The player can chose to stick with a certain side for the whole game, or switch sides throughout the game, although the plot typically flows more clearly if Rito sticks to a certain side.[9]

If the player sides with Branshaldo Empire, Rito will fight alongside Cynthia, a cold, temperamental mage fiercely supportive of her home region.[10] Her side of the story focuses more closely into the struggles of Princess Adelaide, who is tasked with ruling the entire empire once her father passes away due to illness, and Darius, the General who advises Adelaide and controls the troops.

If the player sides with the Aura Republic, Rito will fight alongside Yuri, an extremely formal and devoted knight.[11] His side of the story focuses more closely on his adoptive father, who is in charge of the Republic, and his struggles with his biological son, Veda, and his strong hate towards Branshaldo Empire.

If the player has Rito not side with either party (Toren Militia), he instead travels with his friend Toren, a good-natured ex-mercenary who detests war.[12] His story focuses on cleaning up messes that arise as a by-product of the war, protecting the village that houses his love interest, Livia, and pursuing the mysterious "Jester" character.[13] Additionally, there are extra, minor characters that are unrelated to the main story, that only appear if the player chooses to play optional "Sub-Events".[14] A majority of the characters filling out the actual battle rosters are actually generic characters, which are created and customized by the player, but have no impact on the game's story.[15]

Clearing each playthrough will unlock the ending for each three factions and after unlocking all three faction's ending, two new ending can be unlocked that extends the story depending on the player's attitude and decisions (True Ending and Dark Ending)

Gameplay[edit | edit source]

The game is considered a spin-off to the original game in the series, Ragnarok Online.[16] However, unlike Ragnarok Online, which is a MMORPG, Ragnarok: Princess of Light and Darkness is a tactical role-playing game, playing more similarly to Final Fantasy Tactics. However, elements of the Ragnarok Online universe are still present, such as similar settings or the fact that crouching/sitting can restore character's health.[17][18]

The game is played on a grid, where the player must move characters strategically to cause damage to the opposing party, with the end goal usually to defeat the opposing side.

Customization is strongly emphasized in the game; with characters' genders, statistics, skills, equipment all being customizeable.[19][20] Furthermore, the player can choose to join three different factions, and make different choices to take different paths throughout the game, leading to five different endings.[21] The game does not require players to replay the game five times to see each ending, but rather, the player can opt to go back to crucial points in the game and choose a different path.[22] Optional sidequests, largely unconnected to the main story characters, are also available to play at various points in the game.[23]

Classes[edit | edit source]

There are 14 classes usable in the game. 6 of them are the original 2-1 transcendent classes from Ragnarok Online(some using original class name like Assassin, Bard or Dancer but the sprite still same as their trans). Other 4 are 2-2 transcendent classes and another 4 are exclusive or classes that not originally from Ragnarok Online (some are from other games, like Shaman from Ragnarok DS). Class list:

  • Lord Knight
  • Paladin
  • High Priest
  • Champion
  • Sniper
  • Bard
  • Dancer
  • Whitesmith
  • Assassin
  • High Wizard
  • Dark Knight
  • Shaman
  • Jonda (similar to Male Gunslinger in RO)
  • Kafra (Female Gunslinger but using Kafra sprite)

The game starts with Hero that player can put him/her into any available class. After certain chapters, player can also make additional characters as allies called freelance characters. With the exception of Hero, story characters are locked into specific classes. Hero and freelance characters can change classes, although they can't change genders and access class that not on his/her gender.

With the class system, there are also skills on each class. Unlike RO, There are various type skills for the game.

  • Personal skills - the skills that locked to specific class that also used in RO. If a character can change the class, the skills can't be used until he/she changed back. This is also skills that unlocked or raised by job levels, same as RO.
  • Overdrive skills (OD) - the special skill that can be used when the character has enough overdrive points. OD allows a character to use multiple Personal Skills in one turn and if certain combo/sequences are met the character will use additional special skill for more damage or more effect.
  • Burst Strike - the skill that involves 2 or 3 allies in order to cast it. This is basically co-op attack/action between allies. Normally the allies will combine their attacks, but certain classes can trigger special Burst Strike with different animation and effects (for example: Lord Knight, High Wizard, and Champion will trigger a special combo attack called Destiny Bond)
  • Hidden skills - the skills that unlocked on a character that can change classes and met the requirements plus overdrives. This is basically a fusion skill that unlocked when a character access 2 classes and learn skills that required to unlock it. For example,a Paladin learn Heal skill then change class to Lord Knight, the character will unlock Healing Blade once the Lord Knight learn Aura Blade and use it twice on Overdrive.
  • Passive/Auto Cast Skills - these are skills that can be used on any class. They are unlisted in the skill tree but either auto-trigger by certain conditions or by equipping cards that gives chance to Auto Cast skills.Unlike in RO, Auto Cast can be triggered even when using skills, as long it gives a damage to a target (except for some AoE skills)

Equipment[edit | edit source]

There are 6 equipment slots for a character: Weapon, Armor, Hat, and 3 Card slots. Many equipment with familiar names for players who played Ragnarok Online before. Monster cards also exist and using same illustrations from Ragnarok Online (although the effects are different). However, Cards are directly equipped in card slot (similar to RO2) and likely act as accessories.

Equipment have Attack and Defense power by default. With the mechanic in the game, equipment are more important to maximize Melee damage and Defense instead raising STR or VIT. Similar to Ragnarok Online, some equipments got special effects (element/VVS weapons, raise/reduce ailment chance, etc).

While there is no equipment slot for Shield, Garment, and Arrows/Quiver, some classes are wearing them in their sprites. Paladin always using Shield along with Spear, Sniper get Quiver in his/her back, and High Wizard wears Garment.

Development[edit | edit source]

The game was first announced in April 2011 in an issue of Famitsu.[24] In September 2011, GungHo Online Entertainment released a demo that actually allowed players to play through the entirety of the game, although, through only one of the many paths and viewpoints of the game.[25] At E3 2012, Aksys Games announced they would release the game in English in North America on November 6, 2012.[26]

Reception[edit | edit source]

The game received limited reception due to releasing so late in the PlayStation Portable's lifespan, and received mixed reviews. GameZone gave the game an 8 out of 10 score, praising the game both for its graphics, stating they found them to be "some of the best... on the system", and the structure of the game's story, but criticizing the lack of voice overs in the story segments.[27] The game's easier difficulty was also acknowledged here as well, but the reviewer felt that "...the less intense difficulty makes this particular game more enjoyable than it might have been otherwise...sometimes that’s exactly what a game needs when it still wants to be fun".[28] RPGamer gave the game a middle of the road, 2.5 out of 5 review, stating that "...the game doesn't suffer from any major issues or grievances, there just seems to be a general lack of inspiration or anything to make the game stand out. However, Ragnarok: Princess of Light and Darkness is a decent time-killer that should at least be able to satisfy any tactical RPG itch, albeit one unlikely to make an impact on many favourites lists."[29] PlayStation Lifestyle echoed the these sentiments, praising the graphics, criticizing the lack of voice acting, and ultimately concluding that the game "is a good tactical RPG that never gives you a wow factor but stays solid throughout."[30]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. GameSpot
  2. Aksys picks up Ragnarok Tactics: Princess of Light and Darkness 2012 Jul. 16
  3. Kotaku
  4. News Bulletin - Ragnarok Tactics Officially Announced 2012 Jul. 16
  5. News Bulletin - Ragnarok Tactics Officially Announced 2012 Jul. 16
  6. Aksys picks up Ragnarok Tactics: Princess of Light and Darkness 2012 Jul. 16
  7. The Story Behind Ragnarok Tactics Localization
  8. The Story Behind Ragnarok Tactics Localization
  9. RPGamer Reviews
  10. The Story Behind Ragnarok Tactics Localization
  11. The Story Behind Ragnarok Tactics Localization
  12. The Story Behind Ragnarok Tactics Localization
  13. The Story Behind Ragnarok Tactics Localization
  14. The Story Behind Ragnarok Tactics Localization
  15. GameZone.com
  16. Aksys picks up Ragnarok Tactics: Princess of Light and Darkness 2012 Jul. 16
  17. News Bulletin - Ragnarok Tactics Impression - E3 2012 2012 Jul. 16
  18. Aksys Games Takes On Localizing MMO-based Strategy RPG with Ragnarok Tactics 2012 Jul. 16
  19. New Ragnarok PSP Vidoes Are Locked And Loaded 2012 Jul. 16
  20. Aksys picks up Ragnarok Tactics: Princess of Light and Darkness 2012 Jul. 16
  21. News Bulletin - Ragnarok Tactics Impression - E3 2012 2012 Jul. 16
  22. News Bulletin - Ragnarok Tactics Impression - E3 2012 2012 Jul. 16
  23. The Story Behind Ragnarok Tactics Localization
  24. Ragnarok Online's World Comes To PSP As A Strategy RPG 2012 Jul. 16
  25. Ragnarok Strategy RPG Demo Lets Players Beat The Game 2012 Jul. 16
  26. Ragnarok Tactics Coming To PSP In North America This November 2012 Jul. 16
  27. GameZone.com
  28. GameZone.com
  29. RPGamer Reviews
  30. PlayStation Lifestyle

External links[edit | edit source]