If You Still Believe

Welcome to Valkyrie, a shrine dedicated to the character Rose from the video game The Legend of Dragoon, created as part of BAB's The Road to Hell is Paved With Good Intentions Challenge.

Don't worry, I am carrying out your will.
We took this world back together, I won't let them ruin it. Rose, Disc 3: Mountain of Mortal Dragon

Rose is – and has been, ever since I first played the game in 2011 – my favourite video game character, bar none. The fact that Rose left such a deep impression on me despite experiencing the game eleven years after its release (a long time as far as video games are concerned) is testament to The Legend of Dragoon's captivating story, and although the game has numerous heavy flaws, it is in Rose that all the elements that make it shine converge: It is Rose who stands at the center of the story (though it may not seem so at first), it is Rose who struggles and perseveres, it is her who suffers loss, who makes sacrifices, who lives through inconceivable loneliness and endures the harshest of fates; it is in Rose that the full depth and weight of the game's world and its long history unfold (undeniably the game's strongest element and nigh uncontested in its era), it is in Rose that the relationship between life and death most clearly manifests (which extends to gameplay elements), and it is in Rose that past and present, the game's strongest themes, meet and clash.

Just as The Legend of Dragoon is the chronicle of one lone woman's journey as she continues to fight a war that ought to have been decided long ago, this shrine is a tribute to a remarkable character and an even more remarkable woman.


Note that there are spoilers all across the site, though I've marked most of them. Forgive me for the somewhat tedious way I have designed the navigation; it is a choice made to preserve the mystery of the game's story, for it wouldn't do its storytelling and gradual unraveling of the past justice were I to write about Rose in chronological order of her story. The shrine is meant to be read in the presented order.

Also note that any screencaps on this shrine can be enlarged by clicking on them. It'd be lovely if you took a closer look at them and not just at the text; the game's graphics are gorgeous, and flavour text and citations are included as an additional layer of information.

The Stranger is an introduction to the game and the character, while The Warrior describes what Rose brings into battles; these two sections are safe to read if you're interested in checking out the game yourself, and the information contained within is mostly based on the game's first two discs. The sections that follow are all full of spoilers as they heavily reference the last two discs. If you wish to avoid them, do not even click on the main navigation links, especially the next one. The Survivor lays out the many elements of Rose's past that are scattered across the entire story, with heavy focus on the game's lore and worldbuilding; forgive me, again, if I stray somewhat from the character's story in order to convey the world's story, but neither is without the other, and, as mentioned above, it is together that they create an unforgettable experience.

The next section marks a turning point for Rose as well as for the shrine as the pages become more analytical. The Comrade explores the change within Rose from the angle of her present relationships, which are crucial to understand The Woman, the thematic journey Rose goes through over the course of the story. The Paragon is a collection of essays regarding elements of Rose's visual, technical and narrative design, exploring her roles within the context of the game and the context of JRPGs (you may spot some familiar faces under Kindred Spirits!), and how much it truly means for Rose to have been conceived as a female character.

The Memory is this shrine's media section, which includes both official and fan material alongside clear spoiler warnings where necessary. Lastly, The Legend is reserved for musings pertaining to this shrine as a labour of love.

The content is based on the English version of the game, as flawed as its translation may be in some parts.

The current layout was optimized for Chrome and desktop view.

If there's anything you'd like to say about this dedication, I'd be delighted about any feedback in my guestbook! Thanks a lot for your visit.

listed at: EmotionBAB
last update: April 2016