Review by Uptown877
"One Heck of an RPG.........and more!"
When I first beat Golden Sun, I was jumping for joy. When I heard that the sequel to it was coming out, I was pissing my pants. Golden Sun is one of the biggest RPGs out today on the next-generation handhelds and consoles. With breathtaking graphics, sound, gameplay, and replay value. There is no reason why this game shouldn't be #1 for the GBA for a few weeks to come. A word of warning right now, this game is a lot longer then the 1st game. I already have 35+ hours on this game and have still not beaten it (close though ^_^) However this time may differ depending on how long you play and how well you do with puzzles and leveling. Oh yeah, and before I get started, dont EVER eat Dortios: Ranchero flavor while playing this game..........it just takes the fun out of it. On to the review.
Graphics 11 of 10
No, that's not a typo you see there, and allow me to explain why I mean it. When you are running around on the world map, the detail is exquisite and quite accurate so that you can never truly be lost when youre trying to figure out where to go next. The world is huge and Camelot did a good job making it easily accesible for the most part. When your in towns, the character models look the same like the first Golden Sun, however the buildings, NPCs, debris, and every other aspect of towns has been cleaned up. Psynergy used outside of battle looks extremely well done and crisp, including all the new puzzle psynergy added in this game. And now for in battle ^_^
Awesome is all I can say! The graphics are top notch for this handheld system and blows many PSX and old 16-32 bit games out of the water. Weapon unleashes are absolutely wonderful to watch, especially the more powerful ones you receive later on in the game. Summons are beautiful in every way you could have asked for them to be. Just go ahead and summon one of the highest level duel-summons and you will see what Im talking about. Attacking, evading, using psynergy in battle has all been refined and looks better then ever. Kudos and Woot Nannys to Camelot for progressing in this field of the game, but this is just the tip of the iceberg.......
Sound 10 of 10
(clears throat) Plug in your headphones, (for all you GBA users) turn the volume to MAX, and go deaf for all I care. The music in this game just plain and simple kicks some serious ass! With a fully orchestrated soundtrack Golden Sun: The Lost Ages blows away almost any other game soundtrack Ive seen thus far. Camelot seemed to know when to play a peaceful song such as in the village of Contigo, or to switch to a fast paced breathtaking peice while running through the Jupiter and Mars Lighthouse. Kudos once again for a great job on this part.
........come on turn the volume up!!!!!!!!
Gameplay/Controls 9 of 10
I have to admit that after playing this game for about 8 hours straight your thumbs begin to get bruised and sore, but thats just me. The game runs very smoothly, even during some of the high level summons and battle graphics as well as during the overworld map and dungeons. The controls are very much similar if not exact from the first Golden Sun game. However, sometimes you do not know which Psynergy to use in a certain puzzle or dungeon and some ledges are very hard to see that you can jump to and from throughout the game, however it should not be a problem for most people and most puzzles should only take a few minutes to figure out for each one. Great job here as well.
(stops to go play Golden Sun: The Lost Ages for a few more minutes) Oops where was I.......
Story 8 of 10
I must say that this was probably the weakest spot of the game, but not very much. The story overall is very well driven and forward to your parties intentions, but I feel that Camelot could have put more in to this section. We're going to light some lighthouses and restore alchemy, wheeeee!!! To me that just seemed a little boring, but I guess its all a matter of opinion. I'm not quite sure what it is missing but somethings in the game just feel like they aren't quite explained thoroughly enough for you to understand what is happening or going on. However, this part is still well done and Camelot deserves another pat on the back.
Fun Factor/Challenge and Replayability 9 of 10
This game is overall very fun and challenging at some points to get through. Some puzzles had me sitting there for a few minutes trying to figure out how the hell to get through this certain area. The game is very straightforward though, and you usually always have the psynergy you need to get through a dungeon so you don't have to worry about going all the way back to some other town to see if there was something you've missed. One thing I would have liked to see in this game is a little bit of humor or comedic mischief, however this game seems to take a serious atttiude on things which is fine with me.
The replay value on this game is somewhat high. You need to have transferred your Game Completed Data from the original Golden Sun if you want to collect all 72 djinn (thats 9 per person mind you) and get all the secret weapons and treasures in the game. However, if you use a walkthrough, import data, find all djinn and treasure, collect all the duel summons, and then beat the secret boss as well as the final boss, then you're pretty much done with the game. However, there is always a 2 player battle challenge waiting for you should you ever feel lucky.
Hope this review helps, I've said my piece. Now get out there and buy this game!
Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 04/28/03, Updated 04/28/03
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