SNES Box - Front SNES box front
SNES Box - Back SNES box back

Ogre Battle: March of the Black Queen is a strategy/RPG by Quest, released for the SNES in 1994. There are several unique qualities about the game that separates it from other 8-bit/16-bit US strategy RPGs. Battles take place on a beautiful mode 7 overhead-view map. You control a vast army of up to 45 characters! Each character has multiple possible job classes they can be promoted to. Every choice you make and every action you execute determines which ending you'll get and what secrets you can uncover. Best of all, you can summon God-like powers with magical tarot cards given to you each time you arrive at a town.

OGRE BATTLE MotBQ for Saturn & PSX

PlayStation 1 Case - Front PSX case front
PlayStation 1 Case - Back PSX case back

In 1996, Ogre Battle: March of the Black Queen was re-released for the Sega Saturn and Sony Playstation. This release offers many improvements. Firstly, the choices for battle speeds are faster. Special items now appear at random. The mode 7 tilt can be turned off. When you kill a unit it shows immediately how it affects your Ali and Cha. In the original game, there were items you might never find, even if you found every buried treasure. While it's still random, the rarity of the good items decreased dramatically, and it's far easier to find what you need for the fire crest, or to make vampires, or to create liches, and so on. The graphics have been improved some, too.

Unfortunately, only the PSX version was officially released here. The Saturn version remains Japan-only. From what I've heard, versus both versions, the only difference is that the Saturn version offers five more maps. Note that this website is dedicated only to the SNES version.

Thousands of years ago, a great war was fought. This war, called the Ogre Battle, was to decide whether men or demons would rule the earth. Through the help of 13 White Wizards and 3 High Knights, mankind won the Ogre Battle. The white wizards then sealed the demons in the Underworld. However, one of the wizards had fallen to the thralls of black magic and infused his power into the Black Diamond, an artifact capable of destroying the demon seal. In response, the remaining white wizards created the Zodiac Stones, jewels that were imbued with their power, to aid against the dread artifact. Eventually, the Black Diamond was captured by the forces of good and hidden away by the angels of the sky. For many years, peace reigned between the four kingdoms established on the earth. The gods decided to leave the men to themselves, thinking the world to be safe once again. However, it was not to be. An evil magician called Rashidi had coaxed the Black Diamond from one of the angels, and with it enticed Empress Endora of Zetegenia to attack the kingdoms and bring the continent under her rule. The other kingdoms were unprepared and fell easily to the Empire's armies and Rashidi's magic. Within a year, the Zetegenian Continent came into existence. However, in the former kingdom of Zenobia, a small rebellion, consisting of some of the former Knights of Zenobia, began the first step in removing the evils of the Empire from the land. This is where you, as leader of the Rebellion, take your place. You must fight against the Empire, but that is not all. You must also decide who shall fight with you and for what reason you fight. Thus begins the battle for freedom, the second Ogre Battle.

Your soldiers consist of knights, wizards, healers, bird men, gladiators, beast men, dragons, undead creatures, giants, angels, demons, and more. You put together units of five and send them across a huge map to liberate towns and combat enemies. You can have up to 9 units, although it is not recommended to have that many. You do not control your units once they encounter the enemy. During the attack sequence, attacks are based on a character's class and their position in the unit. Occasionally your characters will level up, and eventually, you gain the option to promote them to a better job class. However, their stats and alignment determine the job classes they can upgrade to. All of the choices you make affect the way the people view you and whether or not certain characters will join your army, so don't go around beating up people a lot weaker than you unless you want to get a bad reputation. Use your Tarot cards wisely!

Ogre Battle MotBQ is truly one of the most entertaining and addictive war strategy/RPGs I've ever played. It's so much fun putting together your army and watching them kick ass in battle. The battle system is unlike any other SNES RPG. Due to its complexity, playing the game for the first time can be tough, and learning how to 'properly' play it won't happen overnight. I remember the first time I played Ogre Battle (via emulation). I played the first 5 minutes of the first battle and said to myself "Hmm... NOPE!", and deleted it. Three months later on a lonely Friday night, I decided to give the game a second chance, and BAM I got obsessively addicted to it for several weeks.

The challenge will give you such a rush of thrill and excitement! Ogre Battle does have its annoyances. Battles later in the game take like hours to beat - unless you increase your emulator's frameskip. It almost feels like the enemy is bombarding you with an endless amount of units. Also, this ain't Shining Force, your popularity meter declines to zero if you kill everyone. For the life of me, I can never beat the game with my popularity meter being anything besides zero. But don't fret, you could always cheat! The bottom of my Tips & Strategy section has a ZSNES cheat file that gives you infinite gold and always has max reputation. Anyway, if you're a fan of strategy/RPGs, then Ogre Battle will most definitely become one of your favorites.