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Video Game Vintage Title Battle Fantasia

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Battle Fantasia

Battle Fantasia

Battle Fantasia is a fighting video game developed by Arc System Works. Originally released in Japanese arcades in April 2007, the title was ported to the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 home consoles in Japan in May 2008, with a North American Xbox 360-exclusive version released in English in September 2008 by Aksys Games. It was later released in Europe in March 2009 for both systems by 505 Games. The game's development was headed by Emiko Iwasaki, who had previously served as illustrator for the company's Guilty Gear series, and utilizes three-dimensional character models restricted to two-dimensional battlefields. Battle Fantasia retains a number of features of its predecessor including fast-paced gameplay, colorful anime-style graphics, and over-the-top effects, yet was designed to be a more basic representation of the fighting genre.

The game is notable for its stylistic departure from many fighting games, and is set in a fantasy world depicted as a storybook, and borrows many superficial elements from role-playing games including damage represented as numbers and a text-heavy story mode, which involves a number of heroes answering the call to battle to stop an evil force from once again attempting to destroy the world. Battle Fantasia met with relatively low sales in Japan and received mostly average reviews from critics due the title's minimal marketing and lack of robust console features.

Battle Fantasia is a traditional versus fighting game where up to two players compete against each other in combat using a variety of characters each with their own special attacks and fighting styles. While the game uses three-dimensional graphics for characters, they are restricted to a two-dimensional battle area that only allows them to move back and forth or up into the air. Players face each other in best-of-three round battles that involve the use of normal attacks, throws, and special moves that often involve combinations of button presses and directional input, which can be strung together in long combo strings. The game features four main attack buttons - two punches and two kicks - as well as a fifth "Gachi" (ガチ lit. "elegance" or "grace") button used to parry incoming attacks. If a player times a Gachi command just as an opponent's attack lands, it negates all damage and allows the player to counterattack in a brief time frame. The button can also be used to push an opponent back when combined with a direction, as well as allow the player to recover faster from a knock-down.

As players deal and receive damage, they add to their MP Gauge located at the bottom of the screen, which can be stocked to a maximum of three levels. Players can expend MP to activate "Heat Up" mode to increase their strength and add additional effects to their attacks, with specific enhancements differing with each character. The gauge also allows characters to unleash powerful super moves which cause heavy damage but require spending one gauge level to activate, and can be strung together with special moves with proper timing resulting in a Super Cancel combination. Matches are won either when a player depletes their opponent's health bar, or when the time limit of each round runs out, resulting in a win for the player with the most remaining vitality. The amount of health is different for each character, and is represented by numerical hit points under each health bar.

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