TearRing Saga Series: Berwick Saga (ティアリングサーガシリーズ ベルウィックサーガ), subtitled Lazberia Chronicle Chapter 174 (ラズベリア年代記 第１７４章), is a game for the PlayStation 2 console. While it is officially the sequel to the original TearRing Saga: Utna Heroes Saga, the games are not significantly related by plot, and the Berwick Saga battle and skill systems borrow significantly less from Fire Emblem than the Utna Heroes Saga battle and skill system did; because of this, the two games barely resemble each other in terms of gameplay. A GameCube beta version was in development before being cancelled.
It has been over a decade since the beginning of the most recent in a long history of bloody wars between the Berwick League and their bitter enemy, the Raze Empire. The Berwick League, led by the Kingdom of Veria, quickly falls apart after the death of King Mordias IV of Veria, and more than half of the League's lands are swiftly occupied by the Raze Empire. Due to a relatively recent civil war among the nations of the Berwick League, several of its members decide to defect and assist the Raze Empire in its invasion.
Mordias's son and successor King Volcens flees with his court to the Duchy of Narvia, the land of his loyal vassal Duke Roswick, where he attempts to rebuild the Berwick League and prepare for a counterattack against the Raze Empire. Volcens calls across the land to all remaining loyal members of the League to join him in his fight. In answer to the king's call, Reese, the son of a nobleman in the frontier lands of the Kingdom of Veria, arrives in the Duchy of Narvia with a small company of knights. However, beset by enemies both external and internal, the revitalized Berwick League is in danger of falling apart once more.
Notable Differences from Fire Emblem
- The game's maps use a hexagonal grid as opposed to the square grids used in Fire Emblem and Utna Heroes Saga.
- There is no Luck or catch-all Skill statistic. Instead, there are Skill stats for every different weapon type.
- Most units have stat bracketing, which prevents them from getting too far away from their average expected statistics.
- Generally, units are unable to counterattack when they are hit by an attack.
- Attacks at a distance of one space are separated into range 0 and range 1, where the former is a regular melee attack, and the latter is considered a ranged attack. This distinction further restricts when defending units can counterattack.
- Units can become injured or crippled when they are attacked, which makes them vulnerable to being captured.
- Roughly half of all recruitable units start off as mercenaries, which need to be re-hired each chapter. Mercenaries can be recruited permanently by fulfilling certain unit-specific requirements, which often involve raising their hidden Happiness statistic through various actions.
- Most weapons and shields break based on a probability instead of having a static number of uses.
- Instead of there being a Staff weapon type, Dark and Light magic both have status ailment-related spells in addition to damage-dealing spells.
- Horses and wyverns count as equipment. They have their own HP and stat bonuses, and they can be healed and swapped around.
- Swords have two sub-categories: blades and maces, which can only be equipped by those who possess skill allowing them to do so. Blades are heavy but deal good damage, while maces are only used by certain clerical units and often have secondary effects.
- Spears also have two sub-categories: lances and pitchforks. Lances are rarer, can only be used by those with the Lance skill, can only be used when mounted, and cannot counterattack. Pitchforks are essentially novelty weapons, used by some enemies and only one playable character. Most spears of all categories also deal additional damage based on how many spaces the wielder moved before attacking.
- Bows and crossbows are treated as entirely different weapon types. Bows are all 1-2 range, while crossbows are 0-1 range, and they both require arrows as ammunition. Crossbows also have the subcategory of ballistae.
- The capital city of Narvia serves as a hub where the player can prepare units, organize items, acquire food bonuses, hire mercenaries, take on requests from townspeople, and do other various activities.
- See main article: List of characters in TearRing Saga: Berwick Saga.
- See main article: List of classes in TearRing Saga: Berwick Saga.
- See main article: List of items in TearRing Saga: Berwick Saga.
- The setting of Berwick Saga shares striking similarities to the Tellius Series of Fire Emblem, leading many fans to believe that they drew from the same set of notes written by Shouzou Kaga during his time at Intelligent Systems. Adding to this is the fact that Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance released a little over a month prior to Berwick Saga. A non-exhaustive list of parallels include:
- A powerful black-clad enemy knight: the Black Knight and Chaos
- A pair of divine swords, wielded by a player unit and their nemesis (the black-clad knight): Ragnell & Alondite by Ike and the Black Knight, Vritra & Vajra by Faye and Chaos
- The black-clad knight's protective blessing can only be neutralized by the other sword: Black Knight by Ragnell, Chaos by Vritra
- The black-clad knight was a former student of their nemesis's father: Black Knight to Greil, Chaos to Cowen
- Two warring deities, one "holy" and one "dark": Ashera & Yune, Veria & Raze
- The two gods were once the same being: Ashunera and Lazberia
- The office of the Apostle, who can hear the Goddess's voice
- The assassination of the previous Apostle by her own country's leader(s): Misaha and Silpha
- An Apostle who cannot hear the voice of the Goddess: Sanaki and Silpha
- The name of the current Apostle: Sanaki (サナキ Sanaki) and Sanacia (サナーキア Sanākia)
- The destruction of the previous world order by a great flood: caused by Ashunera in Tellius, caused by an earthquake in Lazberia
- Although the game was developed by Tirnanog (as stated in the 2006 edition of Famitsu Game Hakusho), Enterbrain, Inc. was listed as the game's developer in the game and side materials. Even Shouzou Kaga's name does not appear in the game's credits, despite his involvement in development (evidenced by his blog). It is speculated these measures were taken to avoid further legal complications, as Kaga and Tirnanog were mired in ongoing legal battles with Nintendo over Utna Heroes Saga during the development of Berwick Saga.
- The legal battle with Nintendo is also speculated to be the reason why Berwick Saga's gameplay makes many radical departures from Fire Emblem and Utna Heroes Saga.
- Berwick Saga had a limited edition release called the Premium Box (プレミアムボックス) edition containing a CD with a selection of tracks from Berwick Saga's soundtrack and a Berwick Saga-themed pocket watch.