Friday, October 24, 2014

Nerdicus SNES Review #45: Breath of Fire 2

Title : Breath of Fire 2

Publisher : Capcom

Developer : Capcom

Genre : RPG

Players : 1 Player

Release Date : 1994

Estimated Value (as of today's date) : $60-$70

There shouldn't be any surprise that there was a sequel released for Breath of Fire that we reviewed last week. In fact, there were quite a few Breath of Fire games released over the last twenty years, but this is the only direct sequel to the original. If I may speak freely, the series sort of went down hill after the SNES releases.

Okay, I take that back. It's not that the games went downhill, it's just that they were entirely different from the original. I get that they were attempting new things with RPG's (especially during the PS era), but there was something about the first two games that really hold that special little place in my heart. 

I'm a sucker for the classic RPG, so of course Breath of Fire 2, much like the first game, is more my cup of tea. And what a delicious cup of tea it is. Tea filled to the brim with an epic cast of characters that seem to be almost exactly like the original, just different anthromorphs. Instead of a fox, we get some bull dog. Instead of an ox, we got some giant stallion of a horse. We still have more fish though. Capcom likes their fish.

You'll star as Ryu again, on another quest to discover his missing family members, and of course save the world. Hey, this is a 16-bit RPG. What do you expect? You'll need to REALLY love RPG's to really appreciate the first two games in the series, so if you're aching for some more dragons, magic, and villains who love to tell you their plans as they are about to kill you...much like James Bond.

Ever notice that? RPG's are a lot like James Bond, bet you never heard that comparison before. EH - let's get this game going. Here goes BREATH OF FIRE 2.

There are going to be a lot of times when you play through this game when you'll think to yourself, "Wait, am I just playing a rehashed version of the first Breath of Fire?" Well, you sort of are. As I posted above, the characters are REALLY similar, and hell, even the plot is almost exactly the same. The major difference, is that there seems to be a little bit of a falling off in terms of the translation. Something was obviously amiss. 

Perhaps they needed to get Squaresoft involved again to help with the translation, because some of the text boxes in this game made absolutely no sense. Shoddy language aside, the story is still pretty good. If you understand what the hell they're talking about.

Breath of Fire 2 follows the standard fare of level grinding in order to get yourself past the next part of the game. Much like the first game, you'll find yourself leveling for hours just to beat a boss. Now, I don't really have an issue with this. There's something cathartic about leveling. It's mindless fun. For me....other people...not so much.

Combat systems remains pretty much the same from the first game, with standard attacks, spells, special abilities, and of course the talent of transforming your main character into a massive Dragon. Cue nerdy squees.

In terms of the game progression, you'll go through the same series of events as the first game. Each area, you'll discover a new character, complete a few character based side quests while continuing on your main quest. Rinse and repeat. Don't expect anything revolutionary here. I warned you, it's a STANDARD RPG.

Visually, Breath of Fire 2 is a bit of a step up from the first game with tighter graphics, better animations and a lot better character designs. The overworld appears to be the same, but there was something about the color scheme in these games. They just make you feel good. All those bright colors. Capcom loves their colors. Just like their fish..and dogs...and anthromorphs..and robots..okay enough.

The soundtrack is just as good as the first game, and really brings the world to life. You shouldn't really expect less from an RPG, as music is probably THE most important thing to a GOOD RPG right behind the story. I can care less about graphics, if the music is spot on. Probably part of the reason why I find myself turning to 8-bit and 16-bit RPG's more than modern ones.

I really need to write an article about my favorite FInal Fantasy songs..perhaps a top ten list?

To finish up with Breath of Fire 2, let's just say if you liked the first game, you are going to love the follow up just as much. It's a true sequel, and offers much to be discovered in this brilliantly created world. Still, I'll be taking points off for the really horrible translation of this game, and poor UI. Shameful! But still...awesome.

Final Score (out of 5) :

Until next time, keep on gaming!



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