Review by Psycho Penguin
"Not the greatest RPG by any means, but a fun and enlightening one nevertheless!"
Note: This is the update to the first review I ever did. If you want the original copy, email me.
I have always been a big fan of the Final Fantasy series. The type of game play the series provides, coupled with the fun factor, story line, and other elements, has made the series an all time great that will be remembered forever and ever. I guarantee you that a lot of people out there are Final Fantasy fans, and I also will guarantee that a lot of those fans will consider their favorite Final Fantasy game to be none other than Final Fantasy 2 for the Super Nintendo. I do not agree with these people, but let me tell you a little about the gam,e first.
Released in 1992 for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System, Final Fantasy 2 soon rose to the top of the sales charts nationwide, mainly because the game was the sequel to the original Final Fantasy.. or so everyone thought. This game was actually not the second game in the Final Fantasy series. It is actually part four, of course almost all of the Final Fantasy fans out there already know that. The game was released in America and called part 2, even though it was really part 4. And the version released here was a dumber version, so many people call this game ''Final Fantasy 4 (Easy)''. The reason for this is because Square Soft thought Americans were too dumb to play the ''real'' version of the game.
Now that I have gotten the history of the game out of the way, let me tell you why I do not agree with the people that call this the best Final Fantasy game. While I certainly respect their opinion, I feel that this is the worst Final Fantasy game released on the Super Nintendo, yes this includes Mystic Quest. However, being the worst is still not that bad, because I just happened to really like the other games, especially part six. This is still one of the better role playing games I have ever played, however.
The story of the game goes something like this: Cecil is the leader of the Red Wings. He is ordered by the king to capture a crystal from the wizards of Mysidia. Cecil does not want to do this, but he succumbs to the power of the king and decides to take the crystal. After seizing the crystal from the poor people of Mysidia, he is dejected. After Baigen gives the crystal to the king, Cecil gathers enough courage to talk back to the king. The king decides, being the freak that he is, to fire Cecil from his post as commander of the red wings. Cecil is thrown out of the castle and is ordered by the king to deliver a package to the kingdom of mist. so the adventure begins....
The graphics look very dated compared to games later released on the SNES, including Square Soft‘s own Final Fantasy 3 (6 in Japan) and Chrono Trigger. This is understandable considering the relative age of the title. Released in 1992, the game's graphics will disappoint some as they appear plain, especially after playing the likes of the above mentioned games. Fortunately, the graphics are very good, and of course, graphics aren't that important (at least in my opinion) to how good a game really is.
The graphics in the game are rather solid in terms of character and enemy design. The battles are well animated and look great, although certainly not to the quality of the later games in the series. I really did like the character designs in the game, however. There was a nice variety of them, and the designs were actually pretty impressive. I especially like the character designs like Cecil, a dark knight, and Rosa, a sort of nurse-like character. The character designs were great, and also the fact the portraits were great just made these character designs even better.
The backgrounds in the game are rather impressive, but I do have one small complaint about them. I’ll get to it in just a minute. First, let me talk about the good things found here. The backgrounds are well designed and very descriptive and varied. I really liked the design of the castles, as everything was featured in the background, from brick walls to waterfalls. I can really not describe how I feel about the backgrounds in the game, because they were just so colorful and wonderful, I really liked the backgrounds in the game.
The only complaint I have about them (told you I would get to it) is the fact that some of them were rather distracting, like the ones in the Crystal palaces and later on in the game, even the moon can be considered as distracting. However, they were not too distracting, I just wish they were a little less brighter, that is all. The world map graphics are rather solid, as they are just as descriptive as the backgrounds. Just think of the game’s graphics as an updated version of the graphics found in the original Final Fantasy and you will have a good feeling about how the graphics look.
Again, the music and sound effects seem dated, as they should be, then some of the newer role-playing games. However, it is also quite good. The music on the big whale and in the crystal palace is great. Unfortunately, like its predecessors, the same music appears far too often in different sections of the game. Also, the same music plays during every battle (like ff1). This is very disappointing. This game needs just a little bit more variety in the music, but the music that IS there is great nevertheless. Some of the music can also be classified as annoying, like the music that plays in that magic town. It sounds funny at first but soon gets annoying.
The sound effects in the game are pretty impressive, although I was not totally impressed by them. One of the things I have always been an advocate of when it comes to sound effects in role playing games is voice acting. This game does not feature voice acting, it is not the end of the world because I know the limitations of the Super Nintendo as a video game console. The rest of the sound effects in the game are actually pretty impressive, I really liked a lot of the sound effects in the game. I will not say that there is nothing new to be heard here, but overall I was really impressed with the sound effects.
The only thing I really didn’t like about the control in this game is the fact that you can’t jump. I mean, you could jump in Mystic Quest, even in the Game Boy games you could jump. I have always liked the role playing games which allowed you to jump, because it just seemed cooler that way. So I was kind of disappointed to see that you could not be allowed to jump in this game. Of course, this is a relatively minor gripe. The control is virtually perfect. Commands always enter on the first time, and movement around the world map is smooth and fluid.
The actual game itself is so much fun to play. The basic game play to the game is just like any other role-playing game, especially when compared to the other Final Fantasy games. You can definitely tell upon playing this game that this is a Final Fantasy game, because the game has all of the elements of a Final Fantasy game. Airships, battle system, maps, this game just screams Final Fantasy, and there is certainly nothing wrong with that, I mean how can you go wrong with the classic formula that has worked so well?
The battle system in the game is awesome, it is just like the battle system in the older games, but updated. You can now have up to five people in your party, and battles go by much quicker. You can equip weapons and armor which allow you to complete battles much easier than usually possible. Your characters are featured on the right hand side of the battle usually, and the enemies are usually featured on the left-hand side of the battle. Battles are turn based and use the ATP time system, which means that when the counter hits the end, it is that person’s turn. You can also skip over a person’s turn and come back to them when you want.
With all of this cool stuff, you would think that I would just break down and give this game a 10. However, I can only give it a 9. Why? Well, because the game just isn’t too much fun to play. Sure, it is a blast to play, and I enjoyed playing it very much. But it is not the perfect Final Fantasy game, and when compared to the other games in the series this game comes up just a tad short in my eyes. Like I have mentioned, I really did like this game, and am glad I got a chance to play through it, but for some reason I did not enjoy this game as much as I thought I would.
This brings me to the replay value of the game. What do you think my thoughts of the replay value of this game are? Well, I do think that this game is fairly addictive and has solid replay value. That much is true, because I did enjoy playing this game a lot. The game is not too long, it takes about 35 hours to complete, but you will want to keep on playing it until you complete it. You may even want to go back a second time in order to get all of the secrets. That is one of the highlights of this game in terms of replay value, the fact that the game has so many secrets. I completed this game three times, so you know it has solid replay value.
Like I mentioned in about the second paragraph of the review, this game was originally called Final Fantasy 4, and Square decided to make the game easier when it was ported to America. Therefore, they are slapping us in the faces and calling us dumb. This game is way too easy compared to the Japanese version. I got nearly 90 percent done with the game before seeing the words ''game over'' appear at the top of a screen during battle, and that was only because I came really unprepared into that battle. The fact of the matter is, this game is way too easy and non challenging, and that, my friends, is the sad truth.
Final Fantasy 2 is yet another masterpiece created by the gaming gods at Square Soft. The excellent control and game play more than make up for the outdated look and sounds of the game. I cannot stress how good of a game this is. This still isn't the best role-playing game ever produced in my opinion, but this is still a game that deserves your money. This game is fun, very fun! Despite the outdated graphics and sound, the objectives of the game are very well planned out. The character transformation in this game is great. If you like role-playing games, buy this game.
The big question is, is this game worth buying? After all, the game is quite expensive and hard to find nowadays. FuncoLand, for instance, is selling used copies of the game for 69.99. While I do not think the game is worth that kind of investment, if you can find it for under 40 bucks, the investment is definitely worth it. This really is a great role playing game, even general non-role playing game fans may find stuff to like about this game. I am not guaranteeing anything, of course, but I am pretty sure all kinds of video game players will enjoy this game.
-The very original storyline is well written and very captivating.
-The graphics may appear outdated but are rather solid.
-The music and sound effects in the game are above average.
-The control and gameplay in the game is awesome.
-The game does have above average replay value.
Not So Good Points
-Some of the music in the game gets annoying after a while.
-The sound effects could have been better.
-Certain aspects about the game just aren’t that fun.
-There is just something about the game that keeps it from legendary status.
I Run Down the Ratings… DaLadiesMan style!
Storyline – 9.3/10
Graphics – 9.2/10
Music – 9.1/10
Sound Effects – 8.8/10
Control – 9.2/10
Gameplay – 9.2/10
Replay Value – Above Average
Challenge – Below Average
Worth a Purchase? – Definitely
Overall – 9.1/10
The Last Line: I have finally updated my first review of all time, for one of my favorite role playing games on the Super Nintendo. I may have found this game to be not as fun as I expected, but I still enjoyed playing this game a lot. This game is well worth a purchase if you can find it for under 40 bucks. Every fan of the Final Fantasy series will like this game. And that is a Ladies Man guarantee!
Reviewer's Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Originally Posted: 11/10/00, Updated 07/16/01
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