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Wild Arms 5

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Cover Wild Arms 5 US
Wild Arms 5
Japan December 14, 2006
N. America August 28, 2007
Europe February 22, 2008

Wild Arms 5 known as Wild Arms the Vth Vanguard in Japan in the 6th entry in the Wild Arms series of video games. It was released in celebration of Wild Arms' 10 year anniversary, with a plethora of cameos and allusions to Wild Arms mythology throughout.

!Release Information:
Developer(s) Media.Vision
Publisher(s) Flag of Japan Sony Computer Entertainment
Flag of the United States XSEED Games
Genre(s) RPG
Rating(s) CERO: B, ESRB: T
Platform(s) PlayStation 2
Media 1 × DVD-ROM
Input DualShock 2

Official Story

12,000 years ago, the world of Filgaia was a land immersed in technology far beyond anything found in the present day. For reasons unknown, however, the citizens of this advanced culture suddenly abandoned their technology, leaving the future of the human race to live in a comparatively primitive state.

All that remained of this once great civilization were some scattered mechanical parts and the occasional remnants of a legendary golem—huge mechanical devices built to serve mankind. While use of the old technology remained mostly out of reach, there were some who had begun to research the ancient devices, seeking even the faintest hope of enriching their lives on this desolate world.

The situation changed dramatically about a hundred years ago when a new race known as the Veruni arrived on the planet. Although similar in appearance to humans, the Veruni’s superior physical attributes and advanced technology allowed them to quickly establish dominance over mankind. The human race found itself relegated to second-class status, and many citizens were forced to perform hard labor day in and day out in order to survive.

Fast-forward to the present day. In a small town called Capo Bronco on the outskirts of Filgaia, two youths, Dean Stark and Rebecca Streisand, witness an unbelievable event—the giant arm of a golem somehow falling from the sky. Their disbelief grows further when they discover that within the clenched fist of the golem’s hand lies a girl with little recollection of her past other than her name—“Avril.” This chance encounter inspires Dean and Rebecca to travel with Avril across the wastelands of Filgaia in hopes of helping her regain her lost memories. Little do they know their journey will eventually decide the fate of all mankind.

Characters

  • Dean Stark- a teenage boy who wishes to be a Golem Hunter. He is naive, but his idealism influences the other characters. Dean fights with a pair of guns in a rather unorthodox manner: what may be the magazines for each gun extend a few feet outward which he uses as blades for close combat - only really showing off the shooting ability of his twin guns in his Finest Arts attack and combination techniques.
  • Rebecca Streisand- Dean's childhood friend and to contrast his brazen qualities, she is portrayed as much more mature. She has feelings for Dean, but doesn't dare divulge...whether or not he'd even notice of course, is something she has also taken into account. Rebecca fights with a single revolver and acrobatic maneuvers - frequently using kicks.
  • Avril Vent Fleur- the mysterious girl with amnesia. Like Rebecca, she develops feelings for Dean.  Late in the game, she discovers that she is actually a leader of 12,000 years ago, known as the Ice Queen because of her cold, cruel manner. In order to recover these memories from so long ago, she navigates through a "Memory Maze"; however, she fears she will become the Ice Queen and abandon her friends. Avril fights gracefully with a sword that changes into a whip.
  • Greg Russelberg - a 'Golem Crusher,' one who destroys golems, looking to find the man who killed his family. Large in stature and wise to the world, he acts as a sort father figure to the group. Greg fights with a combination shotgun - that has a sword built into the handle, which has a dark connection to his purpose.
  • Chuck Preston- a young, boastful Golem Hunter with self-confidence issues. He becomes brotherly to Dean and seemingly represents the need to move forward. He fights with a piledriver-like weapon which he swings in wide arcs..
  • Carol Anderson-the young assistant of a mysterious professor. She is very intelligent but also very shy. She is equipped with a backpack-mounted missile launcher.

Combat System

The HEX system from Wild Arms 4 returns in Wild Arms 5. During combat, the field is split into seven hexagonal sections, some of which may have special properties. The player and enemies can move to different hexagons during their turn. This time around, the party count is three instead of four.

Combat Features

Summon - Summon attacks return once again in Wild Arms 5. Dean and his party members can summon these guardian beasts to the field to attack the enemies/bosses. A full Force meter is required in order to summon a guardian.

Force Combination Arts - The team combo attack feature from Wild Arms 4 returns once again in Wild Arms 5. Utilizing most (if not all) of Dean's party members. Requires half of the Force meter.

Chained Attacks - New in Wild Arms 5 is the ability to chain your attacks together. This lets one of Dean's party members attack 2-5 times provided they have the Violator Badge equipped and enough bullets to make the attack.

Force Meter - Returning from Wild Arms 4 -- This meter increases as Dean's party members make physical related attacks or being attacked by the enemies. This can be used for Original attacks, Team Combos or summoning Guardian beasts to attack enemies. The more powerful the attack is, the more the Force meter will be drained.

Unlike Wild Arms 4 where once a character or enemy loses his turn when he moves to a new hex platform of the battlefield, in Wild Arms 5, Dean's party members and enemies can act instantly when even they move on to the next hexagonal platform.

Bonus Features

As anniversary release game, Wild Arms 5 was packed in a massive array of homages to the series history. The single most notable feature is the cameo appearances of nearly every main cast member of each previous Wild Arms game to date. These cameos also give bonus rewards for completing certain 'requirements.' These rewards include, ultimate weapons (with names referencing past weapons) and more visibly - special outfits. These outfits - of which everyone gets two save for Dean - who gets three, change the appearance of the character to match that of the cameo who presents it. The outfits even alter stats appropriately in conjunction with who it is they look like (for example - Dean can receive Tim's outfit and Jet's outfit; Tim's increases magic power while Jet's increases attack).

The package of the game also comes with a mini-artbook featuring original art from all the games prior - primarily character portraits and some promotional art.

Merchandise

Music

The main opening theme for Wild Arms 5 is "Justice to Believe", while the ending theme is Crystal Letter. Both songs are performed by multi-platinum singer Nana Mizuki, who also happens to provide Rebecca Streisand's voice in the Japanese version of the game.

Wild Arms the Vth Vanguard Original Score Vol. 1 was the first of two complete soundtracks released for the game on January 24th, 2007. The second soundtrack, Wild Arms the Vth Vanguard Original Score Vol. 2 was released February 7, 2007.

Manga and light novel

Collectibles

"Access Memo" Wallpapers

On the Japanese website, there were 6 special, exclusive 3D wallpapers available to players who found the passwords hidden throughout the Japanese version of the game.

Trivia

  • Series veteran composer, Michiko Naruke did not compose for WA5 - a number of her contemporaries were responsible for the new soundtrack and emulating the western feel that she laid a precedent for.
  • As a return to form and answer to the fan outcry for changing the atmosphere in WA4 by turning it into almost a straight Sci-fi story with extremely little Western feel - WA5 would return to more fully realized Western style setting - kicking in the sci-fi elements traditional to the series towards the end, where they were normaly kept prior revelation.
  • The scaled world travel style appears as if its designed to up against competing RPGs - FFXII, DQVIII, and Rogue Galaxy.
  • Ragu O Ragla returns once agains as the penultimate superboss - if the player can survive even getting to it...the rewards are different however - defeating it gives one The Omega badge; which turns every hit into a critical - which when combined with one wearing a Punching Glove or Sheriff Star...can have utterly devastating results for the enemy.
  • Whether it was purposeful or not, sans Virginia and Jude (who had violet hair) - Dean will be the third lead male to feature 'blue hair.' And like the two who have such hair, Dean also continues the addition of a red-colored cloth accessory; Rudy wore a red headband, Ashley wore a red/maroon bandanna, while Dean wears a red scarf/bandanna.
  • When the Nine Lives special outfit for Dean is worn - the battle theme shifts to the appropriate character's special battle theme from WA2...
  • For the most part, the game is titled correctly as "Wild Arms V" through most production material. Unfortunately, there are a couple of errors in the box/packet copy which references "Wild ARMs", repeating the mistake found in Wild Arms 4. Note that this came after Sony put its foot down. Despite this, the same exact mistake appears, from the same person, in Wild Arms XF.

External Links

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