A free-to-play Valkyria Chronicles installment will embrace the casual sphere.
Guys and girls, this is why we can't have nice things. With no disrespect intended to the major shooter franchises out there, it hardly seems fair that they can sell more copies in a day than the most creative strategy-RPG in years did in its whole run. Valkyria Chronicles 2 barely nudged its way stateside, and Valkyria Chronicles 3 this side of the Pacific? Forget about it. While Japanese fans are probably rejoicing at the announcement of Valkyria Chronicles Duel, a free-to-play, browser-based entry that retains many of the series' trademark mechanics and characters, those of us in the West are not likely to see it anytime soon.
A trailer for the game reveals that it has made a few concessions given its new platform and pricing structure, but still looks an awful lot like the three games that preceded it. Players will still recruit a squadron of soldiers of varying class and personalities to their cause, but this time, the warriors will take the form of cards. There are over 200 cards to collect in addition to building up a base camp, fighting tooth-and-nail for enemy territories, and even engaging in some fully-rendered 3D battles. It's not clear if the game will have any social aspects yet, but it will definitely have microtransactions as well as some manner of smartphone app.
Valkyria Chronicles Duel's official site will host the game once it's up and running, at which point it might be possible to sneak on from a Western server - provided you don't mind reading Japanese, of course. To be fair, there's nothing about this announcement that specifically rules out a Western release, but we, as a demographic, have already made our choice. Come to think of it, a Valkyria Chronicles first-person shooter would probably be pretty good; maybe we could have one of those?