Triangle Strategy is a slow burn, but its combat and vote systems are truly brilliant

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Since forever, I have been playing Triangle Strategy. Nintendo has been allowing us to review games since before it was even released. 

Yet, even though the game was released weeks ago, I have yet to write about it for VG247. This is not an indication of the quality of the game, although it is.

Triangle Strategy, in particular, is slow-burning. Although the game’s start is slow, the story continues at its normal pace and feels very glacial once it gets going. 

The game is a bit too long and stodgy for my liking. Yet, it’s compelling enough that I keep coming back to it. I’m able to follow a fascinating narrative and engage in exciting, tactical battles.

Final Fantasy Tactics, its spiritual forefather, Tactics Ogre, was the most important touchstone in the creation of Triangle Strategy. 

Although Yasumi Matsuno was not involved with Triangle Strategy, these creations were very waffly and self-serious.

However, I think it’s fair to say they fulfilled their Shakespearian ambitions more strongly than Triangle Strategy.

Triangle Strategy

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Square Enix’s latest HD-2D project bears a striking resemblance with Octopath Explorer, which was an original game that had many great ideas from classic sources and

struggled to combine them into something greater than its parts. This is something the crew, headed by Tomoya Asano (producer), are still trying to achieve.

Yet, maybe it is more than its parts, despite all that I said. Perhaps that’s why it’s still my favorite game, even though it doesn’t hook me or keep me glued to the screen. 

It’s a large part due to the combat system, which is extremely simple and yet enjoyable. This allows for exciting and challenging encounters.

This is a much simpler approach to tactical RPG battles that Disgaea and Fire Emblem. It trades friendship mechanics or battle system designs to increase damage to create a steady.

more grounded progression. It isn’t without its complexity. However, it uses clever and simple concepts to explain how magic interacts with terrain and changes the state of the battlefield.

For example, casting Lightning-element spells onto water bodies to extend the effects further, or burning down wooden barriers with fire magic.

Preparing for battle will require you to make difficult choices regarding who to take to battle. Each character not only has a standard RPG role, but also has unique twists that are based on their individuality. It’s satisfying stuff.

This is all good, because the narrative that takes you to these combat encounters can be a mixed experience. Although the story’s overarching theme is filled with political intrigue and shades that aren’t often used well in games.

individual characters aren’t as compelling as those in Octopath Traveler or its rivals. Voiceovers are inconsistent quality-wise (at least in English), and this is combined with a long-winded story that often takes away some of the urgency.

vote systems are truly brilliant

There is still brilliance in the chaos and confusion. The game’s reflections on democracy are offered through a series of votes in the dramatically named “Scales of Conviction” system. In this system, Triangle Strategy’s characters vote on a key issue.

These issues will often have significant character or story repercussions. You, the player, can vote for yourself and also try to influence NPC votes. 

This requires knowledge about your allies. However, exploration and combat actions can also affect the extent to which you are able influence the outcome.

The fact that many of these options are not easy adds to the complexity of this system. Some are quite brutal while others may see you as trying to manipulate do-gooders to do something morally wrong for the greater good. 

Each character is unique and each has a different world view. You have to choose your battles and follow your own path. It is a fascinating system, bordering on genius, that adds great value to the story to make it more compelling.

It looks great, too. Square Enix’s HD-2D stuff is becoming a brand. It’s a wonderful way to bring back the feel and look of classic RPGs in an updated context. This game is just as beautiful as Octopath, with stronger menus and other features.

Yes, Triangle Strategy is something I really love. However, I haven’t completed it yet. It’s a constant work in progress, between Elden Ring and Street Fighter update. I also keep returning to Cyberpunk.

It’ll soon be sharing my time and the Chrono Cross Master. It’s a game that feels like this: something beautiful, memorable, and satisfying, but not something you want to binge. 

It’s fine with me. I think it’s worth the admission price. I hope that other games will explore the Scales of Conviction ideas.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Is Triangle Strategy slow?

Triangle Strategy is slow-burn. This is the specific purpose of Triangle Strategy. Although the start of the game feels slow, even when the story begins to unfold and the pace picks up, it still feels very glacial.

Is Triangle Strategy a hard game?

Hard mode is a difficult mode that will delight players who are willing to take on the challenge. This mode is extremely difficult and even the most skilled Triangle Strategy units can die with a single hit.

What type of game is Triangle Strategy, exactly?

Tactical role-playing GameTriangle Strategy Tactical role-playing games, also known as Strategy role-playing games and in Japan as simulation RPGs, are a video game genre that combines core elements of role-playing video games with those of tactical strategy video games.

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