Sakura Wars: So Long, My Love last edited by Bowl-of-Lentils on 05/14/19 06:14AM View full history

Overview

Sakura Wars: So Long, My Love is the fifth game in Sega and Red Company's long running Sakura Wars franchise. Like its predecessors, So Long, My Love mixes tactical RPG gameplay with dating sim elements but the title also serves as a reboot to the series, featuring a new cast in an American setting. Sega published the game for the PlayStation 2 in Japan on July 7, 2005 and NIS America eventually released the game in the United States in 2010 for the PS2 along with a new Nintendo Wii port developed by Idea Factory. This marked the first and only time a title in the Sakura Wars series was published outside of Japan.

NIS America's release of Sakura Wars: So Long, My Love was published as a two-disc premium edition on the PlayStation 2 where the English and original Japanese audio tracks where contained on two separate discs. Besides the change in audio, the Japanese disc also featured several differences in its script, such as all of the characters keeping their original names and certain lines containing less localization changes in order to be a more direct translation of the Japanese audio. The Wii version was a single disc release that only contained the English voice track.

Gameplay

Gameplay in Sakura Wars is divided into two main segments - Adventure Mode and Battle Mode.

Adventure Mode

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In Adventure Mode, Shinjiro Taiga, the main protagonist, is controlled from a third-person perspective and can move throughout various locales of New York and interact with other characters. Sakura Wars: So Long, My Love features the series' traditional Live & Interactive Picture System, or LIPS, which requires the player to participate in quick-time events that decide that outcome and consequences of interactions with other characters. During a conversation, various responses or actions may appear on screen for the player to choose or perform within a time limit. Failure to choose an option within the time limit is also considered a valid response. Furthermore, the player's actions over the course of the game not only determine the narrative direction/ending of the plot, but also the effectiveness of the party in combat.

Character progression in Sakura Wars does not occur in the traditional role-playing sense of earning points from combat towards higher experience levels; rather, the protagonist and his party members become more powerful over time depending on the strength of their respective relationships - therefore, Adventure Mode is the primary avenue through which the player bonds with the other party members in order to become more effective in Battle Mode.

Battle Mode

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Battle Mode consists of turn-based combat on a gridless field. Each party member's STAR (steam-powered mecha) is assigned a certain number of movement points based on his or her speed, which can be spent on actions such as movement or attacks. Additionally, when controlling the protagonist's command unit, the player can also issue special commands to the rest of the squad in order to activate special attacks or change tactical modes befitting the sitaution. Over the course of the game, more tactical options will become available as the player builds up his/her relationship with the other party members.

Main Characters

Taiga Shinjiro

  • Age: 19
  • Birthday: 8/20/1908
  • Hieght: 5'5
  • Weight: 130lb
  • Place of Origin: Tochigi, Japan

The nineteen-year-old nephew of Ogami Ichiro - the protagonist of the previous Sakura Wars games - Second Lieutenant Taiga Shinjiro is summoned to the Imperial Assault Team's headquarters in the opening cutscene, only to be reassigned to the Star Division squadron of the newly established New York Combat Revue, an American sister organization of the Imperial Assault Team. Following the Star Division's first combat sortie in which Ratchet Altair, the current leader, is wounded, Shinjiro is appointed acting field commander of the Star Division. Born and bred into the Taiga samurai family, Shinjiro's personality is straightforward and reflects the traditional Japanese samurai ethic in a rapidly changing world, impressing and occasionally baffling those around him.

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Gemini Sunrise

  • Age: 16
  • Birthday: 6/21/1911
  • Hieght: 5'2
  • Weight: 106lb
  • Place of Origin: Texas

The protagonist of the prequel Sakura Wars V Episode 0, Gemini Sunrise is a self-styled cowgirl samurai from Texas that speaks with a Texan drawl and claims to find the bustle of New York disconcerting. When Shinjiro first transfers into the NYCR, Gemini is working as a cleaning girl in the Littlelip Theater, a front for the Combat Revue's headquarters.

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Cheiron Archer (Sagitta Weinberg)

  • Age: 21
  • Birthday: 12/6/1906
  • Hieght: 5'11
  • Weight: 150lb
  • Place of Origin: Harlem, New York

Pilot, attorney, biker gang leader, and star actress, Cheiron is a strong-willed woman of many talents and a member of the Star Division. Long before she became a lawyer, Cheiron was a gang member in Harlem. The discrimination she and her friends experienced compelled her to become a lawyer to fight for their rights; unfortunately, Cheiron's work affected her sense of morality and she is frequently conflicted between compassion and her desire for justice. Originally named Sagitta Weinberg, her name was changed to Cheiron in the English voice track disc.

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Subaru Kujou

  • Age: Unknown
  • Birthday: 5/9/????
  • Hieght: 4'9
  • Weight: 80lb
  • Place of Origin: Kyoto, Japan

One of the two original members of the Star Division, Subaru is the most enigmatic member of the Revue. Her history, age, and actual gender are unknown to the whole team, but there is no denying that Subaru is by far the most talented actress and pilot on the Revue at the time during which Shinjiro joins. Idolized by all, Subaru's ego is nonetheless far from arrogant, though she has little tolerance for those she sees as useless to the team.

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Diana Caprice

  • Age: 19
  • Birthday: 1/12/1909
  • Hieght: 5'4
  • Weight- 99lb
  • Place of Origin: Massachusetts

A kind but frail doctor that spends much of her time in Central Park, Diana first meets Shinjiro in the park not longer after his arrival in New York.

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Rosarita Aries (Rikaritta Aries)

  • Age: 11
  • Birthday: 4/2/1917
  • Hieght: 4'00
  • Weight: 50lb
  • Place of Origin: Mexico

Rosarita is a prodigious young gunslinger and bounty hunter from the frontier. With nothing but her revolvers, pet weasel, and ravenous appetite, Rosarita arrives in New York searching for her next job/meal, but is recruited to the team early on for both her childish appeal and incredible marksmanship. Originally named Rikaritta, she has her name changed to Rosarita in the English voice disc, presumably to more clearly reflect a Mexican background.

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Soundtrack

Disc 1:

No.Track NameLength
1Surface Warrior (Opening Vers.)1:49
2Surface Warrior (Title Background Vers.)2:58
3Little Lip Theater3:39
4Coffee Break3:23
5Neon Lit Town4:25
6Welcome to Broadway2:43
7Excited3:20
8Closed Heat3:31
9Whoa!3:05
10Thoughts, Overflowing3:18
11Warmth4:29
12Another Clear Day in Manhattan3:34
13Sword Flash3:29
14State of Emergency2:46
15Prelude to Battle3:22
16Ahab, Take Off!2:27
17New York Floral Assault Group, Ready Go!!4:24
18Assault4:56
19Those Fighting on the Flight Deck3:30
20Gang of Destruction3:58

Disc 2:

No.Track NameLength
1The Destroyed and Undestroyed2:45
2Strategy2:22
3Orchids2:12
4Sixth Heaven2:05
5It's Showtime!3:45
6The Whole World Under Conquest3:33
7Victory Is in My Hands1:20
8Surface Warrior (Final Battle Vers.)2:34
9Loving New York4:17
10Kiss Me Sweet4:16
11My Dream1:29
12Downtown Heart2:07
13Bounty Hunter Rika1:33
14One Day I Looked Up at the Blue Sky1:59
15Shining Constellation1:32
16Silver Wind0:46
17Here Is Paradise2:13
18Movie - Cherry Blossoms Fluttering about the Imperial Capital0:41
19Movie - Hopeful New World1:02
20Movie - New York Is in Tumult!0:51
21Movie - Musical (Cleopatra)0:51
22Movie - Trash Chute0:39
23Movie - Star, Sortie!0:59
24Movie - Ahab, Take Off!1:36
25Movie - Change! Flight Form!!0:34
26Movie - Sagitta, Special Attack!0:35
27Movie - Rika Is Bounty Hunting!0:47
28Movie - To a Shining Future0:36
29Movie - Bonds0:51
30Movie - Shoot-out on the Brooklyn Bridge0:49
31Movie - Nobunaga, Departure for the Front1:13
32Movie - Sixth Sky1:01
33Movie - Mainland Anti-aircraft Machine [C.A.R.P.]1:23
34Movie - Together with My Hopes1:09
35Movie - The Skyscraper is the Color of Cherry Blossoms1:18
36Over the Rainbow Sunshine6:21

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