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Video Game / Berserk: Millennium Falcon Hen Seima Senki no Shō

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He's a monster who eats other monsters.

Berserk: Millennium Falcon Hen Seima Senki no Shō (Berserk: Millennium Falcon Arc - Chapter of the Holy Demon War) is the 2004 PlayStation 2 sequel to the 1999 Sega Dreamcast video game Sword of the Berserk: Guts' Rage, making it the second Licensed Game created by Japanese developer Yuke's as part of the Berserk franchise. In terms of story timeline it picks up directly where the previous game left off and adapts the Chapter of the Holy Demon War, which occupies volumes 22-27 of the original manga.

LATE-ARRIVAL SPOILERS: This works page and summary contains Late Arrival Spoilers for Berserk if you haven't read up to volume 27 of the manga. Read it at your own risk, and turn back now if you aren't ready!

At the start of the Millennium Falcon Arc, our BFS-wielding Anti-Hero Guts has rescued his beloved Casca from the Tower of Conviction and vowed to never abandon her again. Despite this achievement, he is forced to face the fact that he himself can do nothing to help her recover her lost personality or memories, and that no place is safe for them because their Brands of Sacrifice attract demons at night. An encounter with Griffith on the Hill of Swords leaves Guts conflicted between pursuing his hated enemy and his resolve to escort Casca to safety, while underscoring that his struggle has only just begun. Seeking shelter from the snow, Guts enters with Casca and his Fairy Companion Puck into a stately abandoned mansion, where he encounters a Creepy Child named Charles. Cursing Guts for intruding into his world, Charles summons apparitions of the dead members of the Band of the Hawk, who accuse Guts of betraying Griffith and call his quest to avenge them wrong. Guts fights them off and leaves the mansion, which turns out to have been a bewitched ruin, but he hasn't seen the last of Charles or the ghosts of his past.

Puck suggests a journey to his magical homeland of Elfhelm where the branded two may find respite and perhaps a cure for Casca's condition, but that's easier said than done. With the strain of defending both himself and Casca night after night, and with the evil side of his personality, the Beast of Darkness, urging him to kill her so that he can devote himself to revenge on Griffith, Guts is about to break. Then, in his moment of weakness, help arrives in the form of three unlikely followers: Farnese, a noblewoman and repentant former Knight Templar; Serpico, her Servile Snarker manservant and bodyguard; and Isidro, a hot-heated Artful Dodger who dreams of becoming a Master Swordsman.

In the woods near Enoch village they meet the witch Flora, who offers to help Guts and his companions in exchange for helping her precociously gifted apprentice Schierke to save the village from rampaging trolls. On this mission, Guts is challenged to master the personalities and skills of his fractious party, and to defeat the monsters in his path without becoming an even bigger monster. And when he faces Charles again in the depths of Qliphoth, he may have to fight a version of Casca who doesn't want to be cured!

Seima Senki no Sho introduces higher quality graphics and larger levels compared to Sword of the Berserk, while refining its Hack and Slash gameplay against hordes of Mooks and tough bosses. Guts fights mainly using his Dragon Slayer, enabling the player to control the sword's trajectory for vertical, diagonal, and horizontal strikes. Combat moves include a basic attack, a strong attack which can be used as a finishing move, a block that serves as a counter when timed correctly, and a dash that can be combined with sword strokes. Guts' Super Mode is charged up by dealing and soaking up damage, and lets him go berserk on the enemy for a short time. The player also has access to Guts' arsenal, including the repeating crossbow, bombs, throwing knives, and the Arm Cannon. The most significant addition is the companion wheel, which enables Guts to use the abilities of his companions. Puck provides healing dust, Serpico freezes time, Isidro produces flame with his fire dagger, and Schierke casts defensive magic on Guts. Meanwhile, Guts collects experience points by killing monsters and by capturing little treasure guardians called Spriggans, which he can use to level up his abilities and party members.

Sadly for international Berserk fans, Seima Senki no Sho was only released in Japan and Korea, meaning that most gamers outside those countries can only play it on emulator using a translation patch. On the plus side, the game features voice acting by the original 1997 anime cast and has an original score by Susumu Hirasawa. The story unfolds through a combination of in-engine dialog and pre-rendered cinematic cut scenes.

Despite the Millennium Falcon reference in the title, this game has no association with the Star Wars franchise.

This game provides examples of:

  • Adaptational Modesty: While the blood and gore is left pretty much intact, the game cuts out most of the sexual material and nudity from the manga in order to better fit video game content standards. The flashback of the Eclipse leaves out the part with what Femto does to Casca, Guts' Near-Rape Experience with Casca under the Beast's influence is cut out in favor of just showing the part where he almost strangled her, Slan's appearance gets toned down with Barbie Doll Anatomy, and the infamous "troll rape" subplot is eliminated.
  • Action Commands: The Brand of Sacrifice flashing on the screen is a cue to perform an instakill move or special attack.
  • Attack Its Weak Point: The largest Golem at Flora's Mansion regenerates when damaged and can only be beaten by destroying the little clay figurine inside him. The first step is breaking open his torso in order to expose the figurine.
  • Backtracking: It is frequently necessary to go back the way you came from if you hit a dead end in the level, and some quests in particular levels such as the Enoch village forest require you to travel to new objectives that appear in areas you have already passed.
  • The Battle Didn't Count: In several cases such as Zodd, the Kelpie, and the Ogre, you can reduce the Boss' life meter to zero in the boss battle only for them to still be alive and dangerous in the following cutscene, sometimes leading to another stage of the boss battle in which its life meter is refilled. Averted at the end with Grunbeld, who collapses after you defeat his dragon form; this is a big change from the manga, in which Guts is unable to defeat Grunbeld's apostle form and only Flora's intervention allows the party to escape the rampaging dragon.
  • Big Creepy-Crawlies: Qliphoth is infested with giant and bizarre bugs as its main enemies.
  • Blade Lock: Sword-pushing complete with glaring between the crossed blades occurs in some of the counter moves against bosses, particularly with Zodd and the Band of the Hawk members.
  • Blood-Splattered Warrior: Guts can become covered in his enemies' blood as a result of wading through so much carnage.
  • Boss Banter: Every boss who's capable of speech and not just a dumb monster or construct will taunt the player during the controllable parts of their boss battles.
  • Boss Battle: Every stage has at least one boss battle. Examples include the giant Yeti (tutorial boss), Judeau/Pippin/Corkus (Charles' mansion), Nosferatu Zodd (Hill of Swords), the zombie captain (haunted mercenary camp), the giant golem (Flora's mansion), the ogre, and the kelpie (Enoch Village church). Qliphoth picks up the pace with the Band of the Hawk, Griffith, Charles, and Slan, while the end stage of Flora's mansion climaxes with Grunbeld and a rematch with Zodd.
  • Boss Corridor: The hallways in Charles' mansion are an ominous prelude to the first boss fight with the Band of the Hawk, especially since you have to run through the beautifully kept but eerily deserted corridors as Charles' voice warns you to turn back.
  • Boss Room: Most of the boss fights actually take place outdoors, but one of the Band of the Hawk fights takes place in the ballroom of Charles' mansions, and both the Band of the Hawk and Charles are fought in a large, empty circular chamber in Qliphoth.
  • Boss Vulnerability: Most bosses are vulnerable to all attacks all the time, and the main trick is to wear down their health bars while avoiding their attacks. Some specific ones are a bit more tricky and can't be damaged while they have their guard up. The Kelpie, for instance, has a shield made of water, and is usually only vulnerable while attacking. Charles is also capable of dodging normal attacks, and can only be damaged in the process of teleporting or after being stunned with throwing knives.
  • Broken Bridge: Only the three kids who visit Flora know where her mansion is, so you have to play hide and seek with them before you can proceed to the next area. The tunnels in Qliphoth have chasms and blockages that require boulders from other tunnels to be moved before the way becomes passable.
  • Call-Back: The game is full of references to events that happened earlier in the manga timeline:
    • The Band of the Hawk members' battle taunts and parting words reference interactions they had with Guts in the Golden Age Arc:
      • Pippin says "Drinking with you after the battle was beautiful," referring to when he offered Guts the cup of friendship on the night they celebrated his first raid.
      • Corkus says "You better watch your back in the future," reminiscent of when he told Guts who was leaving the Hawks that he should watch out for him if they met again on the battlefield.
      • Judeau says "Don't let anything distract you from your real goal," recalling when he told Guts that he shouldn't leave the Band of the Hawk without Casca. While the battle's in progress he also says "You can only wield the sword, right?" which recalls Guts saying that about himself during his heart-to-hearts with Judea and Casca, and "What is lost with the sword should be regained with the sword", which is what Griffith said to Guts when he tried to leave the Hawks.
    • The boss battle with Charles' apparition of Griffith references Guts' duels with him in the Golden Age. Guts even says, "It reminds me of our first meeting." One of Griffith's special moves has him perform a Blade Run on the Dragon Slayer like when they first met, and the decisive move of the boss battle replicates the Single-Stroke Battle in the snow they had when Guts defeated Griffith and left the Band of the Hawk. And of course, the setting resembles the Hill of Swords where Guts encountered the real Griffith earlier in the game.
    • If Zodd gets his arm chopped off, he will use it as a club and then reattach it just like he did when Guts and Griffith first fought him in the Golden Age Arc.
  • Character Portrait: During in-engine dialogue scenes, a character's portrait will appear with their dialog box while they are speaking, regardless of whether or not their character model is on-screen.
  • Charged Attack: Pressing and holding triangle or strong attack makes Guts chamber a powerful horizontal strike, which gets more powerful the longer you hold the button down before releasing it. Upgrading the ability adds additional sword swings that make it into a combination.
  • Cognizant Limbs: Some bosses have appendages that can be individually severed to reduce their array of attacks, or at least targeted independently.
  • Colossus Climb: Guts has a couple special moves in the Orge fight where he climbs the creature's body to deliver an attack to its head or shoulders.
  • Counter-Attack: If the block button is pressed at the right time, Guts will hit back at the enemy. A perfect counter will have Guts avoid any damage and perform a Spin Attack that deals a lot of damage, while an imperfect block reduces the damage and causes Guts to perform a single retaliatory cut. Counters are very important for fighting certain bosses, and bosses can also counter Guts attacks, which is indicated by a sound effect and a flash or aura.
  • Creepy Centipedes: One type of Big Creepy-Crawlies in Qliphoth.
  • Cutscene: The story is delivered through a combination of pre-rendered cinematic cutscenes, in-engine cutscenes, and interactive gameplay.
  • Dash Attack: Hitting circle or dash causes Guts to lunge rapidly in one direction. This in itself does not deal damage, but it does when combined with a sword swing, and can be useful for hitting up to three scattered enemies in rapid succession.
  • Degraded Boss: The Ogre is first encountered as a very difficult Marathon Boss near the middle of the game. In Qliphoth you start to encounter slightly less enormous ogres as regular enemies which are much easier to kill.
  • Didn't Need Those Anyway!:
    • Downplayed in that cutting an arm off a Mook or boss will reduce their attacking ability, at least temporarily, but they'll still keep coming at you with what they have left.
    • Grunbeld's shield takes damage and is eventually destroyed during his boss fight, which does reduce his blocking ability.
    • Zodd can have one of his arms chopped off, although he can use it as a club and subsequently reattach it.
  • Dig Attack: The boss Snowlem, the evil trees, and the gelatinous monsters in Qliphoth can hurt the player by bursting out of the ground beneath them. Slan's tentacles in Qliphoth have the same ability.
  • Dual Wielding: One type of troll wears armor and wields a sword in each hand, indicating their elite status. Isidro, meanwhile, defeats an armored troll by using his falchion and fire dagger together.
  • Elite Mook: Typically there will be lots of puny regular Mooks who go down in one hit, and mixed in with them will be a smaller number of significantly tougher ones that require multiple hits or a critical attack to kill. On the plus side, they're worth 100xp compared to 5xp for the small fry.
  • Fetch Quest: The part where you have to play hide and seek with three impudent boys to make them tell you the way to Flora's mansion is basically just padding.
  • Final Boss: The hulking Dragon Knight Grunbeld is the biggest and toughest boss waiting at the end of the game. Zodd serves as the Post-Final Boss, being the last boss actually fought but a lot less difficult.
  • Fixed Camera: There's no looking around or toggling the camera; you'll always be looking down on Guts from a fixed distance and angle.
  • Flashback Nightmare: The game begins with a cutscene depicting Griffith's betrayal and the massacre of the Band of the Hawk in the Eclipse, which turns out to be a nightmare that Guts was having while sleeping against a tree.
  • Flunky Boss: Fighting a boss and his mooks at the same time is the rule in this game, not the exception. Zodd for instance is one of the few bosses where the whole fight is strictly mano-a-mano.
  • Giant Spider: Qliphoth features enemies resembling giant brains walking around on spider legs.
  • Golem: Flora's golems are animated figures made out of mud, and Guts fights a lot of them when he first comes to the Spirit Mansion. The big one regenerates and can only be beaten by destroying the little clay figurine inside him. Flora uses them to safeguard her home as well as to carry out domestic chores.
  • Healer Signs On Early: Naturally Puck, your first party member, is the one who provides healing so that the game isn't unwinnable at the start.
  • Heal Thyself: In Qliphoth, Puck gives Guts a bag of elf dust to use as a healing item when he splits off from the rest of the group.
  • Heavily Armored Mook: Some of the trolls wear armor, which increases the number of hits they can take. It doesn't seem to slow them down, either.
  • Insurmountable Waist-Height Fence: Small rocks, short fences, and various other impediments mark the arbitrary boundaries of the levels.
  • Interface Screw: One of Charles' magic attacks mixes up your direction control.
  • Invisible Wall: While the paths are often framed by obstacles such as ledges or boulders, some boundaries simply stop you with an invisible wall as you're walking through a meadow in order to keep you inside the level.
  • Invulnerable Attack: Guts cannot take damage or be interrupted while performing a finishing move or a perfect counter.
  • Kiai: Guts screams out a kiai each time that he swings his sword
  • King Mook: The big Snowlem and the big Golem are basically enlarged boss versions of the standard mook in their area.
  • Last Episode Theme Reprise: The final boss fight with Zodd features the game's theme song, Sign.
  • Level Goal: Sometimes the end of a level is simply marked by a green barrier that you run into to activate the next loading screen.
  • Level Grinding: You have to kill hundreds of basic monsters to earn enough XP to level up an ability.
  • Life Meter: Guts' life meter is a transparent globe or window with red liquid, possibly blood, sloshing around inside it. The level of the liquid falls as you lose hit points, and when it runs out you get a game over.
    • Bosses have more typical rectangular hit point bars.
  • Lightning Bruiser:
    • Guts himself, who can run circles around larger bosses, cuts through everything with his BFS, and survives multiple hits from huge monsters. Then he puts on the Berserker Armor, which enables him to furiously dash and somersault while hitting hitting hard enough with his sword to chip Grunbeld's nearly impenetrable armor.
    • Zodd is a terrifying example who is very agile and ferocious even in his giant beast form.
  • Marathon Boss: The Ogre has to be beaten in a prolonged fight consisting of three separate stages, which alternate with another multi-stage boss, the Kelpie. Qliphoth contains boss fights with the Band of the Hawk, Griffith, Charles, and Slan all one after the other, and the final stage has a grueling multi-stage fight with Grunbeld immediately followed by a rematch with Zodd.
  • The Maze: Qliphoth consists of level corridors that fork in different directions, with a portal to the next room at the end of each passage. It's a tricky maze where only the doors along a predetermined path lead to the next room, and it is possible to keep track of which ones did and didn't work. Picking the wrong portal sends you back to the start. The subsequent network of tunnels in which Casca and Farnese are found is also devilishly confusing.
  • Meaningful Echo: During the fight with the Band of the Hawk in Qliphoth, Judeau repeats the line that Griffith said to Guts when he demanded to duel him for the right to leave the Hawks: "What is lost with the sword should be regained with the sword".
  • Mighty Glacier: Some enemies are very big, which makes them slow but very tough and powerful:
    • The Orge is slow and clumsy, but has a ludicrous number of hit points and monstrous strength.
  • Monsters Everywhere: Almost without exception, there will be monsters popping out of the ground and dropping out of the trees anywhere you go within the entire level. They also respawn endlessly.
  • Multiple Life Bars: Bosses have two life meters, the first of which is green and has to be depleted in order to deal damage to the second one, which is yellow.
  • Multi-Stage Battle:
    • Zodd is first fought in his sword-wielding humanoid form, and then in his Apostle form.
    • The fight with the Ogre and the Kelpie takes place in stages which reflect the increasing damage to the town center, culminating in the final stage with the Ogre where the town is being flooded by Schierke's magic and both player and boss are being swept about by the currents.
    • Guts takes three rounds to defeat Grunbeld: the first time he's going against Grunbeld's human form without armor of his own, and barely gets through it; the second time he's clad in the Berserker Armor, and manages to put Grunbeld on the back foot; and finally he has to defeat Grunbeld's gigantic crystaline dragon form.
  • One-Hit Kill: When the Brand of Sacrifice flashes in the middle of the screen, Guts can either perform an instant kill on a regular enemy or do a special move that deals a lot of damage to a boss.
  • Party in My Pocket: Guts is the only member of the party visible on the screen in combat, and the others are assumed to just be waiting in Hammerspace until Guts summons them to use their ability. This is particularly true of Casca and Farnese, who are noncombatants and really shouldn't be left anywhere unprotected. Party members' character models only appear in cutscenes and in the village square when the party temporarily splits up.
  • Recurring Boss: The player fights the Band of the Hawk multiple times throughout the story, and there are non-consecutive fights with Charles in Qliphoth. Zodd is fought at both the beginning and end of the game.
  • RPG Elements: Although not an actual RPG, there are a few gameplay elements borrowed from the RPG genre such as earning experience points by killing enemies and leveling up abilities or party members.
  • Save Point: A glowing magic circle on the ground marks a point where Guts can enter the menu that lets the player save the game, level up characters, and access the Berserk database.
  • Sequential Boss:
    • The Ogre and the Kelpie both have more than one stage to their boss fight, and after you beat one boss' stage you alternate back to fighting the other without so much as a breather.
    • Qliphoth tops that by having you fight the Band of the Hawk, Griffith, Charles' human and Apostle forms, and Slan consecutively.
    • Lastly, there's Grunbeld's multi-stage boss fight followed by a rematch with Zodd.
  • Snowlems: The main Mooks and the tutorial boss in the early areas are evil spirits using bodies out made of snow, based on the ones that Guts fights in episode 187, "Winter Journey (1)".
  • Spin Attack: Some of Guts' moves, such as a perfect counter or what he does while in Berserk mode, have him spin around several times, cutting any enemies nearby.
  • Suicidal Overconfidence: It doesn't matter how many one-hit Mooks you kill, the rest will keep throwing themselves at you with no regard for self-preservation.
  • Super Mode: "Berserk Mode" causes the screen to turn red while Guts temporarily becomes a furious tornado of BFS mayhem.
  • Sword Plant: As he steps forward to challenge the Ogre, Guts dramatically plants his sword in front of him as if to emphasize that he's going to stand his ground.
  • Undying Loyalty: Through Charles' powers, Guts sees apparitions of his comrades from the original Band of the Hawk: Judeau, Corkus, Pippin, and eventually Casca as she was before she went insane. During the first encounter Guts is told that while they find their deaths unfortunate, they do not hate Griffith for it. Instead, they want to think that their lives had meaning because they died for Griffith's sake. They reject Guts' statement that he is fighting to avenge them, saying that they are still Hawks even after death, and that they will fight to prevent him from seeking revenge on Griffith.
  • Video Game Tutorial: When you start a new game, Puck offers to explain combat to you. The player practices various moves on hordes of snow goons, and passes the tutorial by defeating their boss.
  • Visible Silence: When a character is at a loss for words during a dialog sequence, their silence will appear as "..."
  • Whack-a-Monster: The big snow monster burrows under the snow and pops up unexpectedly, so that you can only damage it when it appears above ground. The same is true for Slan's tentacles.
  • When Trees Attack: A recurring enemy are demon-possessed trees based on one from the Lost Children chapter, which are rooted in one place but hide under the ground until approached, whereupon they pop up and attack using their branches.
  • Wolfpack Boss: The Band of the Hawk including Judeau, Pippin, Corkus, and Casca have the power of one boss divided between them, though they become stronger each time they're fought. Individually they can be focused down relatively quickly for bosses; the challenge is that they've got you surrounded and fight as a team, so that turning your attention to one tends to open your back to the others.
  • Your Mind Makes It Real: Whether because Charles gave them physical form, or because they came out of Guts' heart, the Band of the Hawk can hurt Guts for real even though they are supposed to be illusions.