Battle Fantasia is an arcade fighting game from Arc System Works set in a fantasy world later released for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 consoles. The game is rendered, for the most part, in 3D, but the gameplay is strictly two-dimensional. It differentiates itself from most other fighting games with its unique art direction, storybook motif, orchestral music and superficial RPG trappings. For an added "RPG touch", the game surfaces numbers which most other fighting games only show in training modes, like the damage values of each hit and total HP.
Predating Street Fighter IV, Battle Fantasia was called the SF4 before SF4 by some in hindsight.
Gameplay and Mechanics
Battle Fantasia is a five button game with the Appeal, Throw and Heat Up button combinations set to unused buttons by default in the home version for easier execution. Battles play out as they do in most 2D fighting games - deplete the opponent's HP and gain MP by dealing and taking damage.
Buttons A, B, C and D are all used for attacks, the fifth being the GACHI button. GACHI is a mechanic universal to all characters, and it is essentially a parry, usable while standing, crouching and in midair. Depending on the positioning of characters and the direction tapped in conjunction, a GACHI can do a number of things, for example launch the enemy into a wall-bounce and open them up for a follow-up combo.
Tapping left or right twice causes the character to dash or back dash, with the exception of Donvalve, who can only back dash. Coyori is the only character with an air-dash.
All characters can high jump by quickly tapping down before jumping, giving the jump more height and distance.
Heat Up is another mechanic all characters share. Players can activate it when they have at least one full MP bar by pressing A and C at the same time. Effects vary from character to character.
Battle Fantasia features a cast of twelve playable characters, each with their own storylines, special attacks and unlockable alternate costumes.
Marco Van de Land, the nine-year-old son of the legendary hero Silver Knight Dyna. His father disappeared when he was still a baby, but Marco has always tried to live up to his father's legacy and aspires to become like him. One morning he wakes up to find out that his older brother Urs has left home to search for their long lost father. Marco decides to follow in his brother's footsteps and embarks on an adventure with his best friend, a dragon hatchling named Char-Siu.
The future hero, Marco Van de Land!
Marco is a straightforward character to use in battle, with special attacks only requiring quarter-circle and dragon punch motions. He wields his father's sword and a small shield, both of which he utilizes in his moves. In Heat Up mode, Marco summons the dragon Char-Siu, who flies behind him for a set period of time and can be commanded to do a variety of attacks. Marco can gain MP by taunting his enemies using the "Appeal" button.
Marco's unlockable costumes are "DynaKid", red armor reminiscent of the Power Rangers, and a bright yellow armor set resembling a chick, complete with a beak and eyes.
Urs Van de Land, age 17, first son of the great hero Silver Knight Dyna. Urs has been an upstanding member of society ever since childhood, and is always there to defend the weak and the downtrodden. He spends every waking hour honing his skills, thriving to become a greater hero than his revered father. Getting wind of the weird happenings around the world, he decides it's high time he left home in search of his lost father.
Urs Van de Land, a hero for the new age!
Urs shares most of his special move inputs with Marco, all of the moves being somewhat comparable as well. He fights using the Basilisk, a weapon resembling a plasma chainsaw stuck to the end of a motorcycle engine complete with exhaust pipes. Urs's special moves hit harder and gain new properties when Heat Up mode is active.
Olivia Von Roselia, age 17, is the princess of a small, rose-filled country called Roselia. Her mother, Queen Victoria, was one of the Four Heroes who saved the world from seemingly inevitable destruction years ago. The country shares borders with the two superpowers on the continent, Orgran and Baltana, and as such is subject to a great deal of international intrigue. This led to Olivia being kidnapped and cursed by agents of the neighboring countries as a child, but these hardships only helped her grow stronger. One day Olivia saw that the precious Miracle Rose had started to wither, an ill omen, and left the small kingdom behind in search of answers.
She is the princess who strives to fulfill her noble obligations, the lovely rose, princess Olivia!
Olivia uses a staff known as the Heart of Eternity as her weapon, giving her attacks some reach. Her special attacks include a command grab which only does a single point of damage, but leaves opponents open to further attacks. She summons a dole of doves to her side to peck at her enemies when the Heat Up mode is activated.
Ashley Loveless is a member of a secret branch of the Roselian Royal Guard, who have been tasked with the ensured safety of the royalty. He spent his entire childhood training to become an ideal knight, charming and kind to a fault. He harbored a secret love for princess Olivia for the longest time, well aware they could never be together. When Olivia set out to make sense of the withering Miracle Rose, Ashley followed suit, casting aside his knighthood and becoming her shadow.
He is Ashley Loveless, the Shadow Knight, the one who lives for a love that will never be his!
Ashley has a slew of quick and hard-hitting moves, preferring to use his cape and bare hands to do the job. He has a command grab which steals the opponent’s heart, making Ashley glow pink and powering up his next Glance Wing attack, assuming he doesn't get hit before it connects. He can combo and juggle with three variants of Romance Wing, both in midair and on the ground, while in Heat Up mode.
Cedric Ward is the son of the Archbishop of Ma Jolle, Prezzi Ward. Prezzi was rejected by the Four Heroes from the battle that decided the fate of the world, his pride deeply scarred. Cedric takes pride in his orderly way of life governed by strict rules. Keeping people at an arm’s length has given him a befitting reputation among the other students of the Royal Academy of Priests, as he is obsessed with restoring his father’s lost honor. Cedric plans on doing so by defeating the sons of the Silver Knight Dyna, Urs and Marco, and sets off on his personal vendetta.
He is Cedric Ward, humble servant of God, out to avenge his family's honor!
Cedric is one of the two charge characters in Battle Fantasia, his special moves bearing resemblance to Guile’s Flash Kick and Sonic Boom. He prefers keeping enemies at a distance, and his Heat Up helps do just that, powering up all of his special moves.
Watson Livingston, the Prophet of Light, one of the Four Heroes of the last war. He is in a position of great authority at the Royal Observatory, but uses most of his time unraveling the mysteries of the universe. Stargazing one day, he spots something worrying and reminiscent of the omens of the last great war. He sets out to find the Savior of Light, the one who will save the world.
He is Watson Livingston, Prophet of the age and seeker of the one who will lead the world out of darkness, the "Savior of Light"!
What makes Watson a unique character is his Level Up mechanic. He levels up, up to two times, after hitting an opponent three times with a C attack over the course of a single round, changing the properties and damage of his Platina Ball and Torabasa Minore special attacks. Watson can mount an impressive offensive by summoning bear traps, firing Platina Balls and barreling down on his opponents from midair. Heat Up further enhances his Platina Ball, firing two projectiles instead of one, and he can summon a hail of shooting stars to deal massive damage by casting Twinkle Dust three times in succession.
A cat who lives in the eastern land of Sumerami. Separated from her parents as a kitten, she was saved from starvation by an elderly lady, manager of a run-down café called Coyori Café. Indebted, she takes on the name of the cafe, transforms into a human and starts helping her savior by becoming a waitress. Coyori as the new poster girl, the café becomes an instant hit, drawing the attention of adventurers all over the world.
One day, however, Coyori Café was visited by an unexpected guest...
Coyori is a relentless rush-down character with nine special attacks and fast pokes to keep her opponents on the defensive. She is the only character with an air-dash, giving her extra mobility and opportunities for fast overhead attacks with which to catch people off guard. The Super Special Move Cat Storm gets more vicious if the player mashes attack buttons while she claws away at her enemy. Heat Up mode changes the properties of her attacks, notably her super Crazy Cat Dance gets an added wall-bounce at the end.
Freed Valez, the daredevil, one-armed captain of the flying ship Gran Seven. Orphans, Freed and his little sister were taken in and raised by the air pirate Judeau. Freed attended the Imperial Academy and passed with flying colors, but found this way of life ill-fitting for him, opting to become a pirate instead. He lost his right arm and beloved sister in the attack of a mysterious assailant, and now sails the skies in search of him.
He is none other than the man of freedom, the man of the vast and infinite sky: Captain Freed Valez!
If Cedric is Guile, consider Freed to be Balrog. His charge moves hit hard and fast, covering the length of the screen with relative ease. He has the same basic special attacks as Balrog - A forward punch, an overhead, a sweep and an uppercut similar to Balrog's headbutt. Heat Up mode makes all his special moves hit twice - a blue afterimage of Freed appears soon after to do the same exact attack, granting him a chance to bust out impressive combos.
A mysterious gunman known only by his nickname, this wanted vagabond travels the world with his trusty pistols Coyote Hunter and Cobra M 1910. Charged with the murder of his lover and cutting off his best friend's right arm, he is searching for the true culprit to clear his name.
For he is Face, the Avenging Gunman of the Wilderness!
Texas Knee! Disregard Face wielding pistols, he wants to get up close and personal with his opponents. Similar to Coyori, he has plenty of special attacks which cancel into each other, keeping the opponent guessing how to block and when to act. Face shows his expert gunmanship in Heat Up mode, allowing him to juggle the opponent freely with four different long-range attacks.
Donvalve Du Don, one of the Four Heroes and the former king of the now collapsed Dwarven Kingdom. Torn apart by internal struggle, the great war was the last nail in the coffin of the once mighty Dwarven Kingdom. Donvalve was fatally wounded in the battle against the forces of darkness, but made a full recovery with the help of advanced dwarven technology. He leads an uneventful life as the CEO of a renowned weapon manufacturing company called Donvalve & Co., dreaming of the day when the glorious dwarven empire will rise again.
Donvalve is as slow as he is damaging and resilient. As with most Arc System Works grapplers, he lacks a forward dash. Heat Up mode significantly increases his foot-speed and grants him a super fast, easy to execute grapple attack Goldon Swing.
Awoken from his deep slumber in the Abyss, the Incarnation of Darkness walks the human world in search of the Savior of Darkness. His only concerns are gathering souls to offer his lord and finding the next Ruler of the Apocalypse.
He is Deathbringer, the Black Knight and "Bringer of Presage" for this age.
Despite his looks and gargantuan size, Deathbringer covers ground fast and has an impressive reach. His normals are almost as intimidating as his special moves, some of which gain new properties if used after a Warcry. His only Super Special Move, Final Inferno, kills the opponent instantly if let to gain a full charge. If he connects three times with his sword while in Heat Up mode, he sprouts a giant sword from his chest to deal impressive damage.
Dokurod was once a great and respected wizard in Ma Jolle, but he was tempted by the powers of dark magic. A pact with the forces of darkness made him the Incarnation of Darkness during the last war. Having lost to the Four Heroes, he was sealed in a skeletal stick and left to his own devices. He created the puppet Odile to do his bidding and now looks for ways to regain the favor of the dark forces and summon his master once more.
O&D's forward dash is a teleport which allows them to pass through opponents, causing them further confusion. Their mobility is further enhanced by a midair-attack similar to Dhalsim's Yoga Mummy, causing them to spiral forward feet first. In the same vein, they have the only Super that's only usable in midair. Their special moves hit harder and have other minor differences while in Heat Up mode.
Fight through 8 CPU battles to face the boss, Deathbringer.
Discover each characters' multiple stories in this mode. Presented with Japanese audio and large, 2-dimensional, animated character models with an attempt to capture the atmosphere of the scene.
Face your friends in a local versus match.
Face an ai-controlled character in a versus match.
Fight through an endless horde of CPU-controlled, randomly selected fighters until your hp hits 0.
Practice your moves here in infinite time and several CPU options.
You must clear each battle within a short amount of time. Each of these matches are only 1 round.
By playing through the separate modes in the game, you will unlock art that is viewable here.
Fight with friends or random people online in ranker, player, or private matches.
505 Games, the European publisher, removed all of the voiced Japanese language dialogue and most of the alternative paths in the story mode on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions. The US copy was not edited in any way from the original except for the addition of English text.
Xbox 360 Game Installation
The US version of Battle Fantasia requires 3.4 GB of space to install on an Xbox 360 HDD while the European version needs 1.2 GB.