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Valkyrie Profile: Covenant of the Plume is the third game in the Valkyrie Profile series for the Nintendo DS. It focuses on the journey of Wylfred, whose need to exact his vengeance by slaying the Valkyrie is great enough to attract Hel, Queen of the Underworld, with whom he makes a pact with for power. By order of the pact, Wylfred must sacrifice the lives of other humans, including women and children, to obtain the dark power necessary to slay the Valkyrie. In his journey, Wylfred learns whether or not taking the lives of others is justifiable for his cause.
(Disclaimer: All information below are the copyright of Square-Enix
- Wylfred - The halcyon days of Wylfred's youth perished beside his father one grim and fateful day. His family left indignant in the aftermath, his sister died for want of food, whereupon guilt consumed his mother's soul. On the valkyrie he swears revenge for the plague of sorrow that curses his name, and sets forth to battle with her feather in hand.
- Thyodor - Father of Wylfred felled defending a comrade in battle. The herosim that cost him his life earned him a place among Lenneth's einherjar.
- Ancel - Wylfred's bestfriend that follow him in the hopes that the payoff will distract his old friend from his revenge aganist the Valkyrie.
- Ailyth - Enigmatic maiden from the netherrealm summoned. She stands abidingly beside Wylfred in his quest, offering mysterious council along the way. In the end she is revealed as Garm, hound of Hel.
- Kristoff - The crown prince of Artolia. He was a weak political force, and generally left politics to his advisors. He forged a minor alliance with Crell Monferaigne.
- Langrey - The eldest prince of Artolia. He was born out of wedlock and as such was not considered the crown prince. Nevertheless his talent in politics has made many favor him over his brother. Kristoff views langrey as a cruel tyrantical person. He forged a minor alliance with Villnore.
- Lenneth Valkyrie - Valkyrie presiding Midgard at present. Sent forth by Odin, the Battle Maiden scours the killing fields for fallen warrior souls upon whom to bestow eternal heavenly glory. The Chooser of the Slain is revered as a savior to some, reviled as a death goddess by others.
- Freya -' The Goddess of Creation, Goddess of Fertility and the Giver of Life who stands ever faithful by Odin's side, and to whom the All-Father enters the consummation of his commands. Her power is astounding and whomever provokes her shall kneel down before her wrath.
Seven years before the game's beginning, a boy named Wylfred lives in the village of Tourque in Crell Monferaigne with his friends Tilte and Ancel as well as his sister, Elsie, and their mother, Margot. His father, Thyodor, is usually away doing battle to provide for his family. One day, a messenger arrives stating that Thyodor has fallen in battle, but has been taken as an Einherjar evidenced by the Valkyrie's plume left on his corpse. The messenger gives the feather to Wylfred, praising his father's exploits. Unfortunately, this leaves the family impoverished. Margot cannot find work, and Elsie soon dies of starvation. Margot curses the Valkyrie as a Death Goddess, bars her son from ever fighting, and then goes mad from grief. Caught in the delusion that she is living in the time before Wylfred's birth, she mistakes her son for Thyodor. Wylfred, left alone, takes up his mother's hatred and vows vengeance on the reaper of his father's soul. It is unclear if mortals believe that Lenneth simply spirits away those in legendary battles, or if they despise her call to the "glory of war" that draws away their loved ones. Over time, Wylfred's faith in justice and in the gods fade away, leaving him bitter and somewhat cynical.
Years later, Wylfred, now 17, leaves his mother with Tilte and seeks out Auwellyn Keep for mercenary work. He hopes that in proving himself in battle, he may also be chosen as an Einherjar, giving him an opportunity to exact revenge. Out of concern, Ancel follows in the hopes that the payoff will distract his old friend from his quest. After a successful battle, one of the demons lying down still lives and attacks Ancel while his back is turned. Wylfred leaps in the way, taking a mortal wound. While unconscious, an amused voice from an unknown source asks if he will do anything for revenge, and he says yes. The voice tells him that a covenant has formed between them. Wylfred then wakes up, to Ancel's delight, and realizes that the keepsake Valkyrie's feather moved to his hand. Offscreen, the voice converses with her ferocious, roaring pet, and agrees to grant its desire.
Not fully understanding, Wylfred and Ancel are called to fight again, only this time without support. They are outnumbered and outmatched. The voice reappears to Wylfred and tells him to invoke the Plume upon his friend. Doing as he is told, Wylfred's incantation causes Ancel's strength to explode, allowing him to kill all monsters easily. After the battle, however, Ancel dies. Wylfred realized that by using the plume, he has just killed his friend. The voice appears again, revealing itself as Hel, the goddess of Niflheim, and tells him that when the "Destiny Plume" is stained black with cruel sins of war, the Angel Slayer weapon will be forged and he will be able to kill the Valkyrie. Hel then delivers a woman in a dress to Wylfred named Ailyth, who is to act as a contact between them by informing Wylfred of happenings worldwide and communicating Sin quotas and deadlines. From this point on, the plot is divided into Chapters, where an arc of events are contained within a Chapter. The overall plot is unaffected by individual arcs, which diverge depending on the usage of the Destiny Plume.
Wylfred abandons the keep for the woods in guilt, where he is ambushed by Cheripha, a skilled court assassin of Artolia who deserted to travel the world after seeing too much death, who mistakened him as a tracker. The attack exposes her to real trackers, and Wylfred is accused of being an accomplice and confronted. Unlike the others, one tracker continually pleads for Cheripha's return while she refuses. After the duo win the battle, he reveals himself as Lockswell, her father. When his wife's clan was slaughtered for treason, his skills as a court mage allowed him and his daughter to survive under the condition that they join the despised Assassin's Guild. Cheripha forgives her father for being so distant to her. Upon exiting Artolian land, the young woman decides to follow Wylfred to shake him out of his cynicism, and Lockswell chooses to follow his daughter. From here on, Wylfred takes occasional journeys to see his sick mother while lying to Tilte about Ancel's absence.
An unusually coordinated rebellion against Artolia's government by starving peasants then begins in Camille, led by Artolian poorwoman Natalia (who is fighting for justice and freedom) and noble Villnorian knight Earnest (who sympathizes with his partner). Eventually, Villnore is revealed to be supporting the troops so that the divided kingdom will be easy to invade. The princes counter with a mercenary suppression force containing Wylfred's Auwellyn captain Heugoe (suicidal after being betrayed by his son) and the sociopathic twins Mischka and Mireille (Natalia's abandoned children). On the third side, Darius (Earnest's best friend who is suicidal from having to kill him) and Gwendal (a greedy mercenary) are to kill the rebel leaders from within as ordered by Villnore to cause chaos. If Wylfred joins the double agents, both Natalia and Earnest are betrayed and killed. Otherwise, Darius commits suicide and Natalia then realizes Villnore's treachery, surrendering herself to prevent any more loss of life and/or to preserve her homeland. Earnest then rushes in to save her once the rebels are all killed off. Joining the rebels instead forces Wylfred to kill Heugoe to save both Earnest and Natalia. Joining the suppression force allies Wylfred with Heugoe, Mischka and Mireille, the latter two killing the rebel leaders after the attempted rescue. Darius, Natalia, Gwendal and Earnest will join out of loyalty, Heugoe because he sees his need for death in Wylfred and Mischka and Mireille because they are curious about his cause.
Here, the story branches off depending on Wylfred's plume usage. Two uses merits the bad path, one use leads to the normal path and no uses at all brings the player to the best path. Too many uses alerts the gods, and Freya will attack Wylfred in an impossible-to-win battle. Future usage also allows movement between paths.
The next saga speaks of Rosea and Lieselotte, former court magicians who were banished as suspects for the death of Lord Cennair, the archimagus of Artolia. Rosea is now a saintess who goes around healing the wounded and rescuing villages from monsters. Lieselotte's role varies. On the bad path, Rosea is accompanied by Duwain, Thyodor's best friend and the messenger who gave Wylfred the Valkyrie's feather. A coward whose need to return home to heal his wife made Thyodor defend him, he was too late for both of his loved ones before he was redeemed by Rosea. Meanwhile, Lieselotte tries to kill Prince Langrey, who unleashes monsters to find her. Rosea, Duwain and Wylfred kill the monsters and find Lieselotte, who explains the death of one prince would avert a tragic war and desires for their help towards peace. Offended by this mindset, Rosea gives in to anger and kills her former colleague with a dagger. Her following self-horror and Duwain's disappointment cause them to decide Wylfred's path of deicide is proper for their likes. On the normal path, Lieselotte burns Rosea to death out of hatred and convinces Wylfred of her side of the story involving the incident. On the best path, Rosea is charged by the former Artolian court advisor Rouienbourg with delivering a letter to Kristoff. Meanwhile Ushio, the archimagus' adopted son is chasing her for his master's death. Wylfred meets both while defending villages from monsters, and Rosea convinces Ushio that Lieselotte might be guilty. Lieselotte, with a mission to intercept Rosea's letter, burns her and the letter while she is stabbed by Rosea in hate. Ushio becomes uncertain of his vengeance and goes with Wylfred because he can't stand being along with himself anymore.
Following this, war tensions are increasing. Valmur of House Haughn is pressured on all sides to support a prince and end the threat of war, or at least give an advantage to one side and shorten it. On the best path, his best friend, replacement archimagus Fauxnel, recruits Wylfred to fight off monsters attacking Artolia. Valmur tells him that he will abstain to give Fauxnel more time to end the conflict with compromise. Because of this, Fauxnel has Valmur assassinated despite Wylfred's efforts to save him. The Plume, now with enough sin to see the dead, allows him to watch the Valkyrie giving Valmur the choice of becoming an Einherjar after death and his forgiving Fauxnel. Angered, Wylfred storms the mage's manor and defeats him. Fauxnel admits it was really him who killed both Valmur and Cennair so he could achieve vengeance and redeem his disgraced House. Wylfred sympathizes with him, and they agree to work together. On the other paths, Wylfred witnesses how House Haughn is conflicted on what decision to make on the war. Either the parents or the children will be killed despite efforts to save them, and the anguish causes the survivors of the families to follow Wylfred's path of bloodshed.
The final chapter starts, detailing the war between the princes Langrey and Kristoff. On the best path, Rouienbourg is alerted by Fauxnel. He blames himself for abandoning the princes without guidance at a young age, and sends Wylfred across monster filled wilderness to deliver messages to them asking for a diplomatic council. Despite successful delivery, the princes begin the mobilization while Roienbourg waits. Despairing, Roienbourg leads Wylfred and his troops against both princes and captures them, severely cutting down death tolls. Roienbourg, however, has been suffering from illness, and chooses to die by Langrey's blow instead of waiting to die. Langrey commits suicide in prison, while Kristoff stays there unaware. Wylfred leaves in contemplation. On the other paths, Wylfred will ally himself with one of the princes to defeat the other prince and Rouienbourg's troops.
After all five chapters are completed, the climax of the story is met. On both bad and normal paths, Wylfred's toll of sin finally allows the Destiny Plume to become the Angel Slayer. He encounters the Valkyrie, who has been sent to stop him from carrying out his revenge. All of those he betrayed and sacrificed have become Einherjar and fight against him. Upon defeating the Valkyrie, his blackened soul is taken to Niflheim to be devoured by the demon hound Garm or his father takes his son's place, leaving Wylfred to contemplate his sins until his time comes. In the best path, Wylfred tells Ailyth that he has learned that sinning will not truly redeem his father and will go to Niflheim quietly. Ailyth responds by getting angry for the first time, as she was the one that conspired to create the war behind the scenes so that Wylfred could have his revenge. She reveals herself as Garm in disguise and attempts to devour him, but Wylfred, furious that she would deliberately cause such death and suffering, begins to fight back. After penetrating her defenses and striking her directly, Ancel appears as an Einherjar, saying that Lenneth had allowed him to fight beside his old friend for the last time. Together, Wylfred, Ancel and all the other characters defeat Garm. Dying, Ailyth merely laughs and says that they will meet again. Wylfred then apologizes to Ancel for killing him and is forgiven. Ancel tells him to live a wonderful life and, before he leaves, gives Wylfred a message from Thyodor saying to "fix the music box for me." Wylfred returns home, finally admitting to Tilte that Ancel is dead. It is recalled that before he left for his last battle, Thyodor promised to fix Elsie's music box on his return, and that he told Wylfred to fix it should he die. At his house, Wylfred repairs the music box and allows it to play for the first time in seven years. Hearing the music gives Margot the strength to regain her sanity, and she resolves to live in the present with her son. Tilte, Wylfred and his mother live happily in Tourque for years to come. Wylfred promises to travel again one day, and Tilte promises that she and Margot will always be there to welcome him back home.
Asgard: the Godsrealm- Home to the Aesir, and to Odin, their king. In the heavens above Midgard it soars, a vast paradise of rolling hills, tranquil streams, and ornate places. Recently, however, the pastoral landscape has been made to bear the scars of the conflict between the Aesir and the Vanir.
Midgard: the Realm of Mortals- World upon which mankind dwells. The civilization of Midgard have embraced the arcane arts, and the degree to which magic is known far exceeds that of technology. The dire storms in the heavens seem to rain down upon the world below, sending scores of soldiers to their graves while sentencing their families to starvation.
Niflheim: the Netherealm- Realm of the dead that summons the souls of Midgard's slain. The laws and forces of the netherealm vary greatly from the godsrealm, and even almighty Odin dares not meddle in its affairs. Hel sends forth sentinels to keep watch over the realm of gods and men, and though her motives remain unknown, her scorn for the Aesir is certain.