Review by ACrescent

"Golden Sun2 is probably the best GBA game on the market! I don't think I've ever played an RPG game that was this much fun."

Storyline 8/10
Sure, it uses the common theme of ''Save the world beofre it's too late'', but hey. It works. They made the storyline complex enough to keep you guessing, but simple enough to understand throughly without having to play the game over and over and over... There are a few things that are a little repetitive that you could have predicted (if you've played the first game) but that doesn't take away from the mystery.

Gameplay 8/10
THe controls of GS2 are some of the best I've seen yet. Very easy to use. Of course, it's a little hard to break the habit of hitting START every time you want to use Psynergy. This game uses the A and SELECT button, which is unique in it's own way.
Unlike GS1, GS2 doesn't directly guide you in any particular direction. You could talk to the townsfolk (of any town) as amny times as you like, but they'll never tell you where anything is, how to get it, or what they know about it. They'll just say little things that concern them and once in a while, if you're lucky, you may see a display of their abilities.
One of the most captivating things that I've noticed about GS2 is the vast array of dungeons. THe puzzles are easy for the most part, but when they're hard, they're brain crunching. I've spent an hour just staring at my screen trying to figure some of these puzzles out.
If you're more of an Action gamer, this isn't your kind of game. The battle screens are boring unless you just recieved a new kind of Psynergy, Djinni, weapon, or encountered the ''boss'' of the area. Even then it's not very interesting.
I think the thing that everyone hates about GS1&2 is the cut scenes. In MegaMan Battle Network, the cut scenes are about the same length (2-3min) as GS1&2, but when you hit the START button, you can skip them. The first time through the game, the cut scenes are fun, but when you're playing for the third and fourth time, they're just annoying.

Graphics 9/10
Sometimes I wonder whether Camelot only made Golden Sun because they had a surplus of incredible graphics that needed to be put to use. The special effects are incredible and show more promise than some of the old N64, and PS1.
The sprite sheets have to competition. Most GBA games have been outlining their sprites in black and cel shading them. (i.e. Sonic Advance, PKMN Ruby, MMBN1&2, etc.) The coloring on these Sprites actually match their black-lineless backgrounds.
The animation could use some work, but it's OK as it is. THe battle screen holds some pretty interesting surprises. I particularly enjoy the fact that the characters and monsters move constantly, even when their not attaking.
The only real complaint I have are the ---... Nevermind. That's about three (maybe less for fast people) hours into the game and I don't want to spoil it. The sprite's aren't up to the Character's standards because they're lacking in 3/4 view poses. Maybe it's just me.

Audio 8/10
The best I've heard for GBA, but sometimes the fact they keep repeating themselves in small areas with no monster encounters bothers me. And the ''evil'' music gets on my nerves during cut scenes.

Replayability 10/10
I'd play this game until I was sick of it! (which is usually after the third complete runthrough) Then I'd put it away and forget about it for a while, and play another game. When I got sick of that one, I'd go back to playing this one. It's just that good.

Buy or Rent?
Definately Buy. Once you start playing, you're hooked and if you keep renewing your rental, you'll eventually have spent as much or more than you would have on the game. And besides, who wants to rent a game for any reason but to preview it?

Overall 9/10
Like I said before, this is the best GBA game I have ever played. I would reccomend it to anyone 10 years or older.
And yes, I'm taking off a whole point for the cut scenes. =P

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 04/16/03, Updated 04/16/03

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