Let's get this out of the way: Tactics Ogre: Knight Of Lodis is an excellent game. Mike nailed most of the important points about this game. If I may, I would draw a parallel to another GBA game, Golden Sun. Like Golden Sun, Knight Of Lodis is a modern reinvention of 16-bit play mechanics. It is essentially an SNES game that never was, pulled through time to appear on a modern handheld. And also like Golden Sun, it is a well-conceived and well-executed piece of gaming nostalgia, providing the user with many hours of strategy role-playing fun.
The aesthetics and design of the piece are remarkable in their quality and consistency, with the music being a particular high point for myself. The real strength of the aesthetics of Knight Of Lodis is not their quality, but their consistency. The developers have done a beautiful job in creating a world that, though lo-fi, is more coherent than some modern 3D games that confuse fidelity with quality. The design of the game is also well-done, with the class system having less dead-ends than similar games as well as providing a more focused sense of character.
Yet for all it does well, the whole of the game feels like it is less than the sum of its parts. This is not to say that the game is not enjoyable, but the player is unlikely to feel especially excited by the game, precisely because it does not do anything new. Those who have never been exposed to an SRPG will have a treat in store because this is a fantastic game, but likely those players who are interested in Knight Of Lodis are the same players who have played many SRPGs. For them, this is the same old thing. Sure, there are new game mechanics, but nothing that changes the nature of how SRPGs usually work, nothing that quickly separates this game from its peers. The plot, although well done, is also fairly clichd, adding to the experience of dj vu one experiences when playing this game.
But this just means that the game is not perfect. Instead, it remains an outstanding example of its genre, especially on a handheld, bogged down only by a few flaws (already brought up by Mike) and the fact that it doesn't offer anything new to the experienced RPG gamer. Along with Golden Sun, Knight Of Lodis is a blast to the past for those who remember the 16-bit era and an enjoyable history lesson for those who missed it the first time around.