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Tactics Ogre : Reborn | Thick Warfare

Discussion on Tactics Ogre : Reborn | Thick Warfare within the Gaming News - EN forum part of the Gaming News category.

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Post Tactics Ogre : Reborn | Thick Warfare

I don't know if video games are an art - well, I do know, but I'll keep it to myself. Anyway, like all arts, like literature, like cinema, video games have their classics.

Tactics Ogre, released on Super Nintendo in 1995, remastered in 2011 on PSP, is one of them. Just like Doom, Super Mario Bros. or Fallout, it is not just a game but a piece of art history. And yet, in France, Tactics Ogre is still, for many people, a bit obscure title. This is not very surprising: until today and this perfect version, the game had never been translated into Marc Levy's language, a shame that will have deprived many French players of one of the most fascinating works ever created in its genre, the T-RPG.



Tactics Ogre, from its 1995 version, is not a game like the others. In a way, it is the work of a madman, of an obsessive. Yasumi Matsuno, the creator, has been passionate since childhood about dioramas (small pieces of three-dimensional landscapes), fantasy literature (as a teenager, he wrote a saga in eight parts which will be used as a basis for his future games) and role-playing. In Tactics Ogre, he wants to put it all together: dioramas, where groups of ten or so characters will confront each other; a dense and ample narrative that he writes like a play, where hundreds of characters come and go according to the plots and betrayals; as well as a vast world, with complex geopolitics, that rivals the depth of a Westeros or a Dune. All this, articulated around a game with mechanics at least as rich as the universe it has created.

Who wants the sword prepares for war. King Dorgalua Oberyth, after a lifetime of war, has finally managed to unite the islands and put an end to the incessant conflicts that have torn the Valeria archipelago apart. Alas, the peace did not last. When he died, the work of the king-dynast was shattered: the short kingdom was torn apart again. In the north, the Bakrams, with their theological authority, declared that they were the heirs of Dorgalua. Helped by a neighboring kingdom, they try to invade the rest of the archipelago, stopped only by their allies who end up worrying about a too fast progression. In the south, the Galgastanis take advantage of the anarchy to attack the only clan that could compete with them for the territory: the Walisters, from which come the three heroes with tragic fates, Denam, his sister Catua and his friend Vyce, who will try, each in their own way, to find a place between the disillusionment and the atrocities of war.


The story has some major twists and turns.

Matsuno's writing is a chiseled gem. Each scene of dialogue, most of which is no longer than three or four minutes, is conceived as a precise and concise little play. Where most role-playing games - especially Japanese ones - suffer from an excess of exposition, Tactics Ogre does the opposite: it delivers only the essentials, and sometimes even a little less, to the point of making understanding fragmented. The elements that remain obscure at the beginning paint a much bigger world. The first few hours are rough, but allow you to be drawn into events that are as much about the player as the characters, before the protagonists, factions and clans become intertwined in a vast fresco.

The Barbarian Ogre. The craziest thing, finally, is not so much to have succeeded in designing such an ambitious game on such a limited console. The most astonishing thing is that, 27 years later, the game has probably never been surpassed. Triangle Strategy, an excellent strategy game released this year, is not more modern than Tactics Ogre. The Disgaea series doesn't do much better mechanically than Matsuno's game. Perhaps when it was released, the game was less enjoyable, more obscure, slower, with badly balanced phases, but the remake allows it, today, to stand out without the slightest wrinkle. Graphically, the applied filter, which may put off for a few minutes, soon becomes obvious. The ability to speed up the game makes it as lively as any current title, and its progression system, which is quite hairy, has been redesigned to keep the depth of the original while removing the most unpleasant phases.

Quote:
The elements that remain obscure at first paint a much larger world.
Nevertheless, Tactics Ogre is a complex game: the story is complex, the menus are complex, the fights are complex. Here too, Matsuno wanted to put everything: a weather system that affects the abilities, a story with branches, relief, fifty-six (56!) character classes, hundreds of skills. Complex, but not complicated. As in Final Fantasy Tactics, its spiritual sequel made by the same team, battles usually last no more than twenty minutes, thirty for the most crowded battles. The myriad of mechanics, finally, never harms the rhythm of the game which manages, in all its aspects, to stay on a constant and almost frantic progression.



A masterpiece, after all, is always a masterpiece. Tactics Ogre, when it was released, was at the same time so far ahead of its time, timeless and ambitious beyond what was allowed at the time, that a simple facelift done intelligently will have been enough to make it a game that would still astonish if it was released for the first time in 2022. And now, this masterpiece is, at last, in French, in the ultimate form that God intended for it.



What do you think?

Genre: T-RPG
Developer: Square-Enix (Japan)
Publisher: Square-Enix
Available Platforms: Windows, PS4/PS5, Switch
Tested platforms: Windows, Switch
Download: 12 GB
Languages : Japanese, English with French subtitles
Price: 50 € for the game
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