It’s been a while since we saw a big-name AAA RTS come out, but that’s exactly where Square Enix’s Diofield Chronicle is classified. It’s certainly a game unlike anything we have seen in recent days, with a lot of its own unique systems and spins on RTS battle mechanics. If you find yourself struggling to take on this new Square Enix title, don’t worry. We have five tips to help you get on your feet.
Don’t Always Move as a Group
The easiest way to move in the Diofield Chronicle is to move all four of your units at once. However, this is also an easy way to miss mission objectives and eventually die.
Instead, use shortcuts to move units one at a time. Even without advanced skills and abilities, this will give you a huge leg up on the opponent. For example, you can send in a tank to distract the opponent while the rest of your unit snakes behind them for an ambush, getting you that sweet back attack damage. You can pull off an injured unit to roam the map for health, TP, and EP pickups, all of which affect your whole party regardless of distance. You can move a character with a continuous AOE ability to just the right position to hit the entire enemy unit.
Most importantly, you can keep archers and mages well out of the line of fire. If you move them with the rest of your group they will form up, which puts them in melee range of the enemy. Instead, move them separately and they will safely stay in the back, while your tanks and fighters take the brunt of the damage.
Don’t Always Equip the Strongest Equipment
While it is tempting to try to max your stats with the best equipment available in the shop, that’s likely going to be a one-way ticket to mission failure. Why? Because the equipment you use determines your skills in battle. It would suck to equip a shiny new rod only to find out that now you don’t have access to your healing abilities.
This is doubly important when you consider how to spend your skill points, an extremely rare resource that is only doled out to you after completing certain mission objectives. These points upgrade the skills you use, and if you have dumped a ton of points into certain skills only for your new equipment to disable them, then you will find yourself in a bad place.
In general, you are going to have to prepare for an equipment upgrade. Stock up some SP and then use it on the new abilities the equipment grants you. That way when you make the equipment switch you head into battle at full power.
Try to Bring Movement Skills into Every Battle
When considering your equipment loadout, try to make sure every character you have has at least one movement skill. Why?
Well, one of the major mechanics of the game is the ability to get extra damage and crit rate for attacking the opponents from behind. Unfortunately, you won’t always be put into a position to pincer attack the enemy. At that point, you can still try to set up for a back attack, but you’ll be leaving yourself open to enemy back attacks as well.
So instead of brute forcing it by running through the enemy ranks, movement skills will do the job for you. Party skills take place in frozen time, so the enemy cannot attack you if you use a skill that moves you across the map. This way, you can meet the enemy force head-on with your force, and then use skills to essentially teleport behind the enemy ranks, getting easy bonus ambush damage and making short work of your foes.
Just Put Mages in the Back
Every unit in Diofield Chronicle is made up of two characters, one in the front and one in the back. The front character is the only character whose stats are considered by the game. The back character only lends their skills to the front character.
What does this mean? Well, this means that there’s really no particular reason to have mages out on the field at all. In fact, you can put them in the back of a unit with a tank up front and now you have an ultra tanky unit flinging massively damaging AOE spells everywhere. Of course, the tank may not have as high a technique stat as the mage, but you can buff that with accessories.
Similarly, if there is a weapon with an awesome skill on it that you want to use, but its stats are kind of horrible, then put it on a character in the back! That way you’ll use the stats of the character up front but use the awesome skills of the otherwise inferior weapon.
Do the Sidequests
Look, I’m not often one to tell you how to play a game, but Diofield Chronicle really expects you to do its sidequests. These quests have such massively good rewards. Some of them increase the ranking of your base, which will give party-wide buffs and open up new facilities for you to take advantage of. Some will actively add new characters to your roster. Some reward you with weapons and armor you can’t find anywhere else. If you see that blue sidequest icon, it’s worth doing it before pursuing the main mission.
Those are the five tips that we think are the most important for surviving this new RTS RPG. Got any you’d like to share? Leave them in the comments.