|RPG; PC (Via Steam/GoG); Game Arts; 2015 (original release 2000)|
|Frog, are you wielding the Masamune again?|
The story to Grandia II is a pretty cliche and stock one: Ancient God of Evil, about to be resurrected. yadda, yada, yadda. You've all heard this song and dance before, but what helps Grandia II work is that the cast of characters are so wonderful. While characters like Elena and party member Roan are okay, other characters like Mareg and Tio just play off of each other wonderfully, Millenia is treat, but no one can surpass Ryudo for the role of protagonist. He has a sarcastic quip regarding EVERYTHING and it is helped out by a clever writing staff who did the original localization as well as a really solid performance from every voice actor. Good voice acting might be a given for games these days, but back in 2000, it's still a crap shoot whether or not you have actual voice actors, or just a bunch of QC guys with a script in front of them. The only hindrance the story has is that it is a very cliche story and towards the end you have a lot of contrivances just dog pile on top of each other. I've always felt that story was Grandia's MAJOR weaknesses as each game has something wrong with their plot in one way or another. Grandia II is perhaps the BEST story in the series, but don't expect it to win you over unless you like a lot of cheese with your ham.
|WHY DON'T MORE GAMES COPY THIS!?|
However, this is a new edition of the game, and it does come with a few bonuses not found in the previous versions. For one, the graphics have been cleaned up a bit, it's no longer as muddy as the original Dreamcast was. For two, you have the option to play through the game with the Japanese voice track. And three, the game comes with an all new "Hard Mode" which gives normal enemies a small HP, Attack, and Defense boost and made bosses far more dangerous.
|"These guys where no real challenge."|
Grandia II is easily the best game in the series, and this version is a really solid way to enjoy the game. I've played Grandia II in it's original Dreamcast version and I can tell you that this is as true to the original as you can get without pulling that old thing out. On a decent rig, it runs like a dream....cast and besides one time it crashed I found no problems with the game. It might not have a lot for replay value, but it is one enjoyable ride. And it's only $20. Highly Recommended.
Until Next Time.