The DioField Chronicle is a new strategy RPG that I recently got to play here on the channel – thanks ever so much to Square Enix for sponsoring the content and providing me with the game key. After some 30 hours that it took me to fully complete the game, I wanted to share some thoughts and insight on my experience, so if you’ve been wondering whether this game might be for you without getting any story spoilers, stick around.
First, let’s talk about the things I enjoyed about the game. One of the best things about The DioField Chronicle in my opinion is the impeccable voice acting. It’s emotional, very well crafted, and the British accent is doing this game a huge favor, too. Not every line is voice acted, of course, but the important bits, as well the side quests with cutscenes are, so there’s always something to look forward to.
The music is a real treat. I was very fortunate to receive the Digital Deluxe edition along with the gorgeous DioField artbook and the full soundtrack, that I’ve been playing on repeat while working ever since – and yes, even while writing this very article. If you’re into the intense, ominous sounds of war with a strong beat, as well as some gentle tunes, this might be something to look into.
When it comes to the story, for the most part, I really enjoyed it. The characters are unique and quirky, everyone with their own imperfections, that in my opinion gives this game a special kind of charm. I’d say the character storylines are a lot more exciting and memorable than the plot itself, but I could just be saying that as I was a little bit surprised with how the game ended. I won’t offer any spoilers, but I will say that the game has definitely left some room for a DLC, as the last chapter has left some loose ends that I would’ve liked to see tied.
The combat itself is quite enjoyable. If you’re an experienced turn-based strategist, you could argue that the game doesn’t offer enough when it comes to combat depth, but for casual players who are looking for a cozy RTS, I’d say you’re getting a pretty good deal. It took me a bit of time to devise a strategy on how to approach the enemies and which spell combos work the best, but once I got that figured out, I felt very comfortable with the game and was looking forward to every mission, challenging myself to get it done within the time limit in order to get the bonus rewards. The fact that everyone can resurrect their fallen comrades by approaching them and clicking on their corpse was pretty useful as you don’t have to rely on a healer for that. The game complexity doesn’t expand much further than what you see in the first few chapters, but if you’ve played through the demo and you like what you see, I’m pretty sure you’ll like the rest of the game as well.
When it comes to the game systems, my most favorite thing about the game is by far the weapon development. With each weapon you learn how to get, you’re getting a special set of active and passive skills. Later on in the game, those become super powerful and you just look for opportunities to use those skills, as they are both OP and look gorgeous in game. This has a downside too, being that you’ll choose the weapons by skills, and not by how powerful they are, so you’ll most likely end up giving your side characters bad weapons with good skills. You won’t be able to upgrade all your weapons to a maximum so some of your characters will end up having the less optimal anyway, but I found planning for who I’m going to upgrade kind of fun.
There are some things about the game that I didn’t like as much, and if you’re trying to determine whether you’ll be waiting for the game to go on discount or buy it at all, I guess you’re in the right section. Something I already mentioned when I talked about the story is the way it wraps up, as there is no information on whether or not the game will ever receive a sequel or a DLC. If you know you’ll be dissatisfied with a cliff-hanger or anything remaining unresolved, this might not be the right choice for you, although I didn’t mind it as much as I like theorycrafting the possibilities.
When it comes to investing the skill points into characters, both through the character’s own talent tree and the overall class tree, I found that there are some limitations when it comes to whether you’re going to do what you really want to do, or what you feel like you have to. Once you know who your main party members are, you’re only going to be researching the skills that they use, and on top of that, you’ll only be picking out the ones that the weapon they have can provide, so there’s not much room for exploration. The individual talent tree leaves you a bit more room to explore, but I wouldn’t say it’s that impactful overall.
Something else I found a bit lacking is the exploration when it comes to researching Magilumic orbs, which are basically summons that can really turn the tide of the battle. Considering how expensive it is to upgrade them, both money and material wise, you are put in a position where you’re either hoarding your resources until you’ve unlocked all of them, which is a bad idea, or you’re developing one of the early ones and missing out on the rest of the orbs that will get unlocked as you progress through the main story. If I had known how awesome some of those other summons would be, I definitely would’ve waited with spending all my money and crystals on Fenrir and Bahamut, which are good, but I never got to play around with the other ones.
You could argue that one can explore the New Game+ with the new weapons and orbs, but as it currently stands, The DioField Chronicle doesn’t offer New Game+ as a feature that’ll keep you engaged since the enemies don’t scale up to your high level, and that’s just a shame, as you end up cheesing through them and not exploring enough of the gameplay that you’d like. You could use the other party members that you haven’t played with before, but if you don’t enjoy them, there’s little point in doing that.
I hope I was able to provide you with some useful information that’ll help you decide whether or not you want to play the game right now. I definitely encourage you to try out the demo, as it offers a generous first chapter, and you’ll be able to see for yourself if this is something you’ll enjoy or not. If you have any questions or experiences with the game, please drop them in the comments, as it will help others decide if this is the right game for them. If you’d like to check out my The DioField playthrough, you can find the playlist here, and if you’re more of a visual person, here’s the full review of the game: