Radiata Stories (ラジアータストーリーズ) is an RPG for the Playstation 2, developed by tri-Ace and released by SQUARE ENIX worldwide in 2005. The game features an engaging story, a storybook-like world design, real-time battle sequences, and a cast of nearly 200 unique characters. Both SQUARE ENIX and tri-Ace are critically acclaimed for their previous RPG collaborations, the Star Ocean series and Valkyrie Profile. If you're familiar with these games, you're sure to notice several references to them throughout Radiata Stories.
Radiata Stories takes place in a world shared between humans, elves, dwarves, and goblins. Racial tensions and a hunger for power are on the verge of causing a war to erupt between the Radiata Kingdom and its surrounding peers, and the fate of the world soon lands in the hands of our protagonist -- a headstrong boy of 16 named Jack Russell -- who sets off to join the Radiata army in hopes of becoming a great warrior like his legendary father. Jack's adventure introduces him to many friends and foes as he finds himself in not only a battle of races, but amidst an ancient war between good and evil.
One of the most interesting features of Radiata Stories is the party system. There are nearly 200 characters in the game -- over 170 of which can be recruited to join your party. Some can be befriended easily, whereas with others you may need to grant a request, defeat them in a battle, or have certain people in your party in order to gain their assistance. All of the characters have a unique personal history, special skills and attributes in battle, and follow a daily schedule in tune with the game's clock system. Although Jack is the only player-controlled character in the game, you can command your party members to do certain things during battle once he gains leadership status. With over 170 differently skilled people to choose from, you're able to form your ideal fighting team exactly as you see fit!
Radiata Stories was released in Japan on January 27th, 2005. The events of the game were also recounted as a light novel series, as well as two manga serials (The Epic of Jack and The Song of Ridley). An english version of the game was released in North America the following September, but none of the paper publications have yet to be licensed.
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