Dark Rose Valkyrie – Review
Follow Genre: J-RPG
Developer: Compile Heart
Publisher: Idea Factory
Platform: PS4
Tested on: PS4

Dark Rose Valkyrie – Review

Site Score
Good: Weapons, Characters, Story, Mechanics
Bad: Sometimes overly complicated for no reason
User Score
(2 votes)
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VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 10.0/10 (2 votes cast)

The cooperation between Compile Heart and Idea Factory have blessed us with many new, yet old school RPGs, which often proved to be great in terms of characters, story and modern mechanics, all mingled with very familiar RPG mechanics. Of course, many of these games don’t always get the credit they deserve, due to certain smaller flaws in the graphical department, or the fact that these games often cling to ‘ancient’ combat mechanics. This time we get another new competitor on the horizon, namely Dark Rose Valkyrie, which includes a hefty amount of cool looking monsters, a strange virus and the biggest melee weapons you’ve ever seen. A solid recipe for hours of solid fun.

Dark Rose Valkyrie


Dark Rose Valkyrie doesn’t bombard you with anything too complex, safe for the fact you’ll find yourself in an alternate universe to the one we know, where a meteor has struck our planet carrying the ‘Chimera’ virus, that transforms both animals and humans into raging feral monsters, even though the process seems to be slowed down when it comes to the human ‘victims’. These infected people first turn into very intelligent beings, before the final feral stage takes over. You, a young rookie captain, Asahi Shiramine, get assigned to lead a team, which is later dubbed the Special Force Valkyrie team, and your mission is to eradicate all the Chimeras and pretty much save the world, with your seven underlings. Of course, things get extra complicated when all of a sudden you cross paths with humans that are infected with the Chimera virus that are able to control the virus, and use the transformation aspect at their own bidding.

Overall the story doesn’t really progresses that rapidly, but for a game within the genre, you won’t fall asleep either. The information is brought to you gradually, and you’ll also be able to converse with the characters in-between missions. The latter is often optional, but you’ll be missing out on the character development, or simple amusing skits, if you skip said portions of the game.


Graphically Dark Rose Valkyrie left us with mixed feelings, which isn’t the first time when it comes to a Compile Heart game. The characters, and in particular the impressive giant weapons they carry, look impressive, detailed and very likeable. The girls aren’t overly sexy, which is the case in many of Compile Heart games, but they look cute, yet don’t flaunt too much of what nature gave them. The male characters are equally diverse, and they are quite likeable as well. The weapons are all giant ‘steampunk’ versions of existing weapons, such as swords and axes, and they are being thrown around as if they are made out of flimsy plastic, but it suits the game perfectly, which can also be said about the attack effects, be it for melee or ranged attack. All of the weapons have been designed with care, as each of them has a melee mode, but also a shooting mode, which shows their hidden guns. The only drawback is pretty much how empty the environments are, ranging from the overworld in which you can run, in order to find new locations, to the actual dungeons themselves. While they never look bad, there is hardly any clutter or decoration to make these areas come to life.

The conversations are presented in a visual novel-like fashion, albeit with 3D rendered characters, which are still rendered as if they’re somewhat flat. This rather original mix of 3D and 2D looks good, and it makes sure the conversations feel a bit more lively, as the characters occasionally change poses, have fairly ok lip syncing, and show a reasonable amount of different expressions. Other than that, there are a proper amount of different backgrounds, as well as some good looking static pictures to look at.


Dark Rose Valkyrie comes with a hefty amount of voice acting, at least when it comes to the story sections of the game, and/or important quests. Other events, such as getting to know your team better, are sadly not voiced, which somewhat feels like a missed opportunity as this game would have been grand if everything came with voice acting. Nonetheless, there’s more than enough to enjoy.

The music in the game is likeable and it gets you in the proper mood, where the overworld has slower music, just like the overview of your base, but it tends to change key when you’re in a predicament or combat. Overall the music might not be the most memorable part of the game, it still does the trick.


Dark Rose Valkyrie is a rather old school J-RPG, which clings to many of the basics of the genre, while adding a decent amount of original, yet somewhat complicated extra mechanics. Nonetheless, the key items remain the same, where you roam the overworld, looking for dungeons, to beat a hefty amount of monsters, level your characters, upgrade your items, and ultimately save the world from the Chimeras.

The place you’ll be spending a lot of time in will be the headquarters, where you can simply select a variety of rooms to either talk to your underlings, accept quests, buy and develop items, heal your characters, skip time and so on. These items are pretty straightforward, safe from the developing part, which only becomes a bit more clear (and used) in the later portions of the game. The only thing you’ll be doing a lot is repairing your armor, which makes it feel as if you’re never earning a decent amount of money. In some ways this already ramps up the difficulty, especially when you’re not playing on the easy difficulty level (and even then it makes things harder).

Monsters roam around freely on the world map, as well as dungeons, which means you can try to avoid combat, or sneak up on your foes to gain the first strike. Of course, when you are detected and an opponent can jump you, you’ll start with a disadvantage, which allows the opponent to start first and dish out damage. A first strike is really important in this game, as it will avoid extra damage to your armor, thus it will save you a hefty amount of money in repairs. Other than that, the combat moves in a turn based fashion, where normal attacks trigger instantly when it’s one of your characters’ turn, but depending on other skills, or even stronger attacks, it all boils down to their ‘level’. Normal attacks are level 1, and thus they trigger immediately. Others are level 2, up to level 4, and thus they require some extra time, which means it will take longer before your character gets his next turn as well. You can see whose turn it’s next, and you can also delay an enemy’s turn by attacking said enemy. When getting hit, a character, be it friendly or a foe, will stop in its tracks, and thus it will freeze in the ‘next turn’ meter. When you keep this in mind, you can avoid a reasonable amount of attacks. Overall, the attack system feels rather classical, but the combined attacks, the ranged attacks for each character, and the delay mechanics make for something original and fun to mess around with.

Only a few minor remarks hold the gameplay back, such as the complexity of the combat, which can often easily be managed by sticking to the basics, or the fact that quests are often not really marked on the map, or they don’t properly state what you have to do. Of course, this makes sure the player has to use his/her wits, and find out things themselves, but sometimes things are pretty unclear, which can turn into a frustration if you have to run around in circles long enough. Also the upgrade system is rather vague on what everything will do when you develop or use it. All of these are often typical within the genre, but a little clarity would have been nice.


Dark Rose Valkyrie is one of those games that not that many players will have heard of, which is a terrible shame. While some mechanics might feel a bit antique, and others tend to overwhelm you when it comes to their complexity, this game is certainly worth the effort. Not only will you be treated to a cast of interesting characters, a decent storyline and proper gameplay, you’ll get to mess around with awesome weapons and decent tinkering systems.

Dark Rose Valkyrie 1

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 10.0/10 (2 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)
Dark Rose Valkyrie - Review, 10.0 out of 10 based on 2 ratings

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