Community Review: Review: Dark Cloud 2
Truly an RPG to remember.......step into the world that is dark cloud 2.
Dark Cloud 2 brings a new meaning to the word “sequel”. The original Dark Cloud was a good game, but lacking in some areas. When Dark Cloud 2 came out I rented it to see if I liked it enough to buy it. Later that day, I was literally at Gamestop buying a copy of the game. Just a few hours of playing this game made me fall in love with it! They have improved on everything from the first game, and I mean everything! After reading this review, I guarantee that you will want to try this game out!
The story is better this time around, and I could actually understand it! Basically, you are a boy named Max who loves machines and inventing things. One day, you go to the circus, trouble stirs, and now you're on an adventure to save the world! Ok, sounds a little lame, huh? Don't worry, more and more stuff is explained later in the game, as the story moves on. In your adventure, you team up with Monica, a girl from 100 years in the future. Monica is in your time to save her world from being over run by evil creatures, which is the current situation in Max's time. You end up traveling all over the land, meeting amazing people and trying to restore peace in the world. Aside from all of that, Max is searching for his mother, who disappeared one day. I liked the story a lot, except some of the cut scenes dragged on forever and ever.
Gameplay is 90% of the game. If its not fun to play, then why would you want to play it? Lucky for us, Dark Cloud 2 introduces some amazing elements into the RPG world that no game has done before. First of all, the weapon system in Dark Cloud 2 is very complex and in-depth. You build up your weapons by synthesizing them with other items such as crystals and gems. There are 10 areas that you can build up your weapons in: attack, durability, flame, chill, lightning, cyclone, smash, exorcism, beast, and scale, and each will affect your weapons differently. Both characters have two types of weapons, right handed melee weapons and left handed projectile weapons. Monica can also transform into different monsters in the game them with badges that you will acquire and fight with them. For Max, he can hop in his robot called the “Ridepod” and fight with it. You can upgrade the Ridepod throughout the game and customize it however you want! Another cool element of Dark Cloud 2 was the fact that you can invent weapons and other items using Max's camera. Max can take pictures of various objects and monsters throughout the game and he can use them as ideas for an invention. You can combine three ideas to make a new invention! The more ideas you find, the more items you can make! The dungeons are as good as ever! The idea is still basically the same: you progress through each floor of the dungeon, killing monsters along the way, until you reach the boss, but now there are places in the dungeons where certain events will happen. The bosses are a little harder in this game, and there is certainly more of them! The greatest part about the boss battles, and all of the battles that you will partake in, is that you can switch to the other character at any time you want. This can be helpful if one character is about to die, or if you just want to use the other person for awhile. Georama mode is back and better than ever! In Dark Cloud 2 you find “geostones” in the dungeons that let you build different things out of your materials and place them in the lands that you travel to in order to create a lively town and to restore the future. Yes, you can travel to the future to see how your town developed! You can also paint houses in the sequel, which lets you customize even more! In Dark Cloud 2, you can collect different townspeople from your hometown, Palm Brinks, and place them in your georamas! The fishing mode is also back, but with a twist. You can raise your fish in an aquarium and race them in a competition called the “Finny Frenzy”! There is also a golf-like feature in Dark Cloud 2 called “spheda” in which you with a ball-like thing into a “time distortion” in order to receive cool items. With all of these cool new features, Dark Cloud 2 is literally one of the most innovative games ever!
I am a big fan of cel-shading and Level-5 have made the characters in Dark Cloud 2 beautiful with it. For one thing, you can actually see different emotions on the character's faces because of the cel-shading. Also, I felt that cel-shading made this game a lot clearer and easier to see what was going on, but that's just my personal preference. The actual environment is not cel-shaded, it is more like what you would see in a typical game these days. But that doesn't really matter because this game looks great in both areas. Another thing that I loved about the graphics in Dark Cloud 2 was how the sky looked. Level-5 have made it so that you can see the shadows cast by the sun. You can see the stunning sunsets. You can even see the atmosphere of the moon! But the best part of all was the cut scenes! There is so much detail in them that they almost look real! I really loved the graphics in this game; A+.
The soundtrack to this game was great! The music matches the place that you are in perfectly. For example, in the Rainbow Butterfly Wood dungeon, the music is really outdoor-like and you can hear little chirps from the birds. And in the futuristic Luna Lab, the music is very scientific and electronic, and you can hear the whirring of different gizmos as you frolic about the town. The music that plays as you walk around Palm Brinks is my favorite in the game. It is very lively and matches the town very well! As for the voices of the characters, I have no complaints. They were done very well and the voices matched the characters just right. The extra sound effects were also very pleasant. They were kept to a minimum, which I think is a good thing. The background music and voices are all you really need, anyway.
Here is the only weak part of the game, controls. I felt that Dark Cloud 2 was somewhat hard to use until you got used to it. At first, I would keep on pressing the wrong button and ending up dead. This is because if you accidentally pressed the square button while in combat, you would most likely go to the first-person camera view, and would be slaughtered by enemies while open to attack. Another bad point with the controls is that in the menus, triangle is no longer the “go back” button. Instead, it is the select button (along with X). This really ticked me off sometimes when I would accidentally use an item when I wanted to go back a screen. The only good thing to say about these controls is that X is still the main button. Gotta' love that X!
Final Verdict: BUY IT
Dark Cloud 2 has terrific replay value. Once you beat the game, you can always build up all of your weapons to their final evolutions, practice spheda, enter fishing/finny frenzy competitions, collect more ideas, or whatever else you want to do. There is also a surprise after you beat the last boss, which make your game last 15+ hours longer if you choose to pursue it! The entire game took me over about 80 hours.
Let us know what you think and as always dont be a jimmy.
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