Review: Valiant Hearts: Coming Home - War written in Poetry and Narrative!

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Ten years after the first game, the sequel to the award-winning Valiant Hearts is finally out on consoles! Continuing the previous events and bringing back well-known characters, this game brings a poetic narrative-focused story about war.

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After ten years since the release of its predecessor, Valiant Hearts Coming Home finally came out for consoles on March 7, 2024. A year earlier, it had been released exclusively for mobiles through the Netflix gaming system.

The game is a direct sequel to Valiant Hearts: The Great War and in it, we will experience the story of six characters whose destinies are intertwined during the first World War.


For our Review we played its Nintendo Switch version, but the game can be purchased for PC, Playstation, Xbox, Android and iOS.

Welcome to the 369th Infantry Regiment!

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Continuing the previous game, Coming Home addresses the final years of the World War I, where we will play with five distinct characters, but linked by friendships, romances and coincidences during the war.

The game takes place when American army troops begin to take part in the war once and for all. As Germany sought to dominate the oceans and seas, the United States decided to intervene and began its recruitment phase to participate in the War.

With the dream of becoming heroes when going to and returning from war, thousands of African-Americans enlisted, however, with the prejudice of the time, many white soldiers refused to fight alongside them. As a result, infantries like the 369th regiment were formed, and through the game, we will learn more about their important participation in the war and the help they provided, mainly to France.


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Throughout the game, we control four of the main characters, with each one presenting a different gameplay.

The game follows a side-scrolling narrative, where each of the 19 phases spread across three chapters will have a different gameplay, according to the playable character at that moment.

Valiant Hearts is a short game, which doesn't present any difficulties as soon as it focuses on telling a story. Despite the light gameplay, minimalist art and dialogue, the work manages at all times to convey the weight and emotion of each scene, from moments of relaxation, where the protagonists are doing some leisure activity and even the most dramatic ones in the midst of gunfights, bombings and medical emergencies.

I finished the game in 3 hours and, depending on the skill and search for 100%, this time can take a little longer. It does not have a strong replay factor, so the main reason that may lead the player to want to replay it is the search for collectibles which may have been left behind in a first run.

Story told in another perspective

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Since its predecessor, Valiant Hears works with majesty in telling the story little known in schools and even in books about events, characters and curiosities about the World War I.

Unlike games like Battlefield, Call of Duty, the old Medal of Honor or even Brothers in Arms, where war was always seen limited to gunfights and bloody battles, Valiant Hearts brings the story with the character's interaction with the setting in simple but striking events and mainly facts unlocked with each advanced and collectible screen found.

Each collectible tells a story and explanation of its use or participation in the war and of the time. Curious facts such as the “Canary Girls”, medical advances, maps are explained and told in these items, which can be accessed through the menu.


The Characters

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Three new faces will be introduced in this sequence, as well as the return of three others from the first game. Each one will have phases with different gameplay, making the game dynamic and not boring.


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One of the first game's friends, Freddie returns in this sequel. A complete character who brings all the baggage from the previous plot, being someone strong, with great empathy and concern for his battalion, brother and those close to him.


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George is our faceless character, an airplane pilot who begins his mission after a forced landing. During its gameplay, we go through aerial missions and moments of stealth.


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Ernst is one of the characters more striking scenes and with internal conflicts and choices that placed him in situations that would be difficult for many, as he is a German with friendships with several people of different nationalities.


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Freddie's younger brother and the protagonist, who we will play for most of the game. He is one of the members of the Harlem Hellfighters, has the same courage, bravery and friendship as his brother, seeking to go to the War Front to find him and bring him home. During the journey, we will have different types of gameplay such as exploration searching for items, the tension of escaping from adversity and even some relaxing rhythmic challenges.


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The Belgian doctor, and a favorite for many, returns in this game as one of the best protagonists in history. Always putting her safety at risk to help others, she continues to help her friends and others injured in the war, witnessing traumatic moments and always seeking to save all people in need.

Her gameplay, in addition to being explorative like that of the other protagonists, has minigames where she must take care of the sick, removing shrapnel shards, cleaning wounds and even using bandages to cover them.


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Perhaps the face most people remember from the first game is Valiant Hearts' most charismatic and doggy companion: Walt.

He returns in this sequence, helping the protagonists during some phases, exactly as he did in the first game. When he participates during some sequences, we will give him orders to collect resources or advance in places that we initially don't have access to.

Harlem Hellfighters

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Something that Valiant Hearts does not spare in honoring is the squadron of the 369th infantry regiment, known as the Harlem Hellfighters. This division was made up of men who, due to the prejudice of white soldiers at the time, could not fight alongside them and ended up being sent to serve as support, mainly for French troops.

They were of essential importance in the war, in addition to sharing part of their culture with the French, such as introducing them to Jazz (many of the infantry soldiers were musicians), basketball and even baseball.

Throughout the game, we will be able to learn more about them in more interesting ways as, unfortunately, their achievements aren't much talked about in books.


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Valiant Hearts: Coming Home is a pleasurable experience, which honors the memory of so many important personalities in the outcome of the first World War. Its simple gameplay, with minimalist arts, manages to give lightness and beauty to such tragic, sad and bloody events in mankind's history.

Despite being a relatively short game with little reason to be replayed, it is essential for history lovers, especially those focused on the World Wars, bringing another point of view on these events, moving away from other games that seek to bring them with hectic battles and shootings - focusing instead on small puzzles, exploration and narrative.

Its soundtrack manages to be dense and complete, giving more weight to the striking moments, as well as its absence in certain parts where only silence and ambient sounds are enough to show the drama of that situation.

It is not necessary to have played the first game in the franchise, but I recommend it to make the most of the story and create a bond with the characters who return in this sequel.

I give an 8/10 to Valiant Hearts, which, like the previous one, made me laugh, tense up and even cry in its story. Coming Home shows that a simple game can tell a story as complex and complete as the events between 1914 and 1918.

Did you like our Review? Have you played this game before, or do you intend to purchase it soon? What other war-themed games would you like to see here?

Also check out our article about Brothers: A Tale of Two Sonslink outside website, recently remastered and also focused on a great narrative.