I watched the video review over at IGN PS2, and they said not to get caught up in the “poppy” “bubble gummy” sugar coating, I will try not to. But that is a lot to ask.
The opening CGI is as breathtaking as any of the CGIs from FFX. We get to see Yuna singing? Yep, She has gone from High Summoner to pop icon. Well, no, not really. We (that would be Rikku and Paine) are presented with their first fight, against “Yuna.” We find out shortly after that it is really LaBlank using the Songstress Garment Grid. I like that we are thrown into a number of battles right off the bat.
Needless to say, I am frothing at the mouth over the story of FFX-2. I really enjoyed the story line of FFX. I have been waiting to play this game since the extra movie from FFX International hit the internet. X-2 is already getting interesting, and I am only on the first mission.
The battle system is a lot faster paced. It is still turn based, but is a little more real time, I do not know how to exactly describe it. I am not sure I like the new faster battles, it is different. You can hit enemies while they are attacking your party, that is nice. The Garment Grid thing is interesting, allowing Yuna to play Piane’s Warrior role, for example.
You can go to the Cabin portion of the Air Ship and go talk to a bar keep, named “barkeep” and buy/sell items. How convenient that is. Having the Air Ship at the beginning of the journey makes this game quite a bit different from FFX. It is no longer linear, there are a couple different things to accomplish at any given time.
IGN was right when they said the music was lacking. The lead music directors for FFX moved on to FFXI and what we are given for music in FFX-2 is lucklaster. The Fanfare music, is not very Fanfare-ish. The overall music is more techno then in FFX. It will take a little getting used to. I bought the 4 disc soundtrack for FFX because I liked it so much, I do not think I will be paying to import this soundtrack. The vocal tracks in FFX-2 don’t even compare to Suteki da ne (Isn’t it Beautiful). The music is such a big part of the Final Fantasy experience, I think it is a shame they do not have the same director for FFX-2 as they did for FFX.
The “platforming” elements consist of nothing more hitting the Circle button. If you do not do it fast enough you might drop into a chasm, or you might fall off balance and have to back up and try the jump again. Nothing revolutionary here, but it is a really nice breakup of the flat landscape. It adds more of a 3rd dimensional feel to the environments.
I was hoping to get something for my FFX save file. I did all that could be done in FFX, including finding all the legendary weapons. I think a nice touch would have been to start FFX-2 with all the Albed Primers, if you took the time to locate all of them in FFX. Something like that, something for the people who did more then just play the game for 40 hrs. to beat the final boss.
This game, like FFX, will most likely be my favorite game of the year.
OK, I have to get back to playing, I have to go find Wakka in some cave now.
Originally posted on Breaking Windows.