Review by Skye7707

"Bowie is here! Best RTS on the genesis!"

~ Introduction ~

Yay! This is the first game I see as the perfect RTS game. You can walk wherever you want do battles when you want, explore things and so much more.

~ Game Play ~ 10/10

This game isn't a sequel of Shining Force story wise but the battles are the same. You control 12 characters, mages, swordsmen, robots, birds, cannons, thieves and so many more classes. The battles take place mostly in the overworld but some battles will be in cities or caves, there's one dark cave battle. That one is not easy but if you played the game a couple of times you'll be able to beat the battle in a few minutes. You control one character at a time, it's like Final Fantasy X - Turn Based Battles TBB. When your character has its turn you'll see a field highlighted, that's the area you can walk. Depending on the ground, soil, mountains, stone, pavement, ... your defence and attack will change. If you're in the mountains your attack will decrease and your defence will rise. This has no effect on birdmen because they fly, they have a higher walk area too. After you've done a battle you can go back to the city and save in a church, no need to heal because after each battle you'll regain strength, only those who were defeated in battle need to be cured by a pastor.

When you're lvl 20 you are able to promote to another class. When you've done this your status will slightly decrease but you'll level up much faster again because you're back level 1. Trust me if you do not promote you'll have a hard time beating some hard battles! You can equip items like swords, shields and rings, but you have to watch out for cursed equipment. They are a lot stronger but will curse you. Sometimes you'll be stunned in battle and won't be able to move so that's no profit. Just sell the evil things to a merchant, they're willing to give a lot of money.

If you can't win a battle, there is one way to win it. Train. The best way is to egress from a battle when only the last enemy lives. So you can do that battle over and over again. Another way for mages like Sarah before she's promoted to a Mater Monk her defence and attack are very weak so just heal all characters, it doesn't matter if your hp is full, she'll gain experience points anyway. To level up you need 100 EXP, yep even if you're level 95 or something like that, the lvl up system is made like this: When you fight against an enemy that's a lot stronger than you, you'll get 48 or 50 experience. If it's like you, you get 20 to 40 EXP, if it's a lot weaker than you, you'll get 1 to 18 EXP. So you won't be able to train fast if you have a high level. Sarah and the other healing mages can always use their heal ability which gives them 10 EXP each time they heal someone.

New in Shining Force II is the caravan. You'll get it when you beat Talos, some 90 feet tall robot that only can be defeated by the Achiles Sword. The caravan is a mobile character and item storage. You'll be able to enter it in the overworld and withdraw or deposit items and switch characters.

~ Story ~ 10/10

Like all Shining Force games the story is excellent!
You're Bowie a student of Astral, a wise assistant of the king. On a night there was evil in the air, storms, rain and all that stuff. This happened because Slade the thief stole the Jewel of Light and the Jewel of Darkness. Because the jewels weren't on the place they belonged Zeon awoke and began to create devils. The next day you go to school and Astrals has been taken to the castle by a soldier because the king is acting funny. Sarah wouldn't be Sarah if she didn't want to take a look, so our three friends, Bowie, Chester and Sarah go to the castle gate and think of something to get past the security. When you're in the castle you'll see that the king is possessed by a gizmo, a devil cloud like monster. Astral can take it away from the king but the gizmo flees to the tower. You decide to defeat the evil beast. Here you'll held your first battle. Here's a little thing what the story about SFII is, do not read it if you never played it because it's 100% spoilers.

The king of Galam will kidnap princess Elis because he's possessed by a demon too. You try to stop him but you couldn't. There's an earthquake and whole Grans City is destroyed, you travel with a ship to Parmecia and built a city with the wood of the ship. After a while you'll meet Peter from Mt. Volcano and bla bla bla Elis is saved, the end. After the final battle wait a few minutes and you'll get an extra battle with only bosses.

~ Graphics & Music ~ 10/10

Nice for the genesis. There are cool areas like volcanoes, caves and cool city. There are several characters and townies that look different, your character changes sprites too, all this is the same like "BowieOnline". The MMORPG game of Shining Force II. Cool music too, sometimes it's dramatic and sometimes very happy music, when you go one-on-one in a battle the music changes.

~ Play Time & Replay Value ~ 10/10

There are several chapters. I think it will take some time to complete but when you did you can play on a higher difficulty and after that try to do some solo plays.

~ Overall ~ 10/10

Best RTS ever!

Rent or Buy - Get this game!

Reviewer's Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

Originally Posted: 07/14/04

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