After about 20 hours spent over this game, I felt like writing my (first) impressions over it. Putting aside this porting came with video settings since the very beginning, I’ve personally experienced more issues with it than with Final Fantasy XIII, while it should actually be the opposite. Thankfully, the framerate dropped only occasionally (to me it happens for most during cut-scenes and in a few locations, while battles are always fluid except when “Ruinaga” is casted) and didn’t compromise the gameplay at all. Anyway, since this isn’t a true review, I’ll just go through what are the game’s pros and cons so far in my opinion.
+ A better story. Or at least, I think it’s more intriguing that FFXIII’s plot.
+ Immediate control over your party. Even though since there are only two playable characters I’m not sure this is a true “pro”.
+ More opened maps. The tunnel-like structure of its precursor has been replaced with opened maps and NPCs interaction has been improved as well.
+ Side-quests since the beginning.
+ Battle system improved. Overall it’s a simple copy-paste from the one of Final Fantasy XIII, but they added a few more stuffs within it and improved a few more aspects.
+ Summary. The game offers the possibility to go through Final Fantasy XIII’s story. If you haven’t played it and wish to learn the main facts which gave birth to this sequel, you can safely do it in-game.
+ Mini-games. They’re back. Some may like them, some may not. I like them, and that’s enough.
– The difficulty significantly dropped. This isn’t necessary a con, but for me, it is. I love challenges and I was a bit disappointed to discover this game is actually too easy.
– The jump button. It wasn’t necessary. You don’t have the control over where you can or cannot jump, you just have the illusion of doing it.
– Music arguably unfitting. Maybe it’s just me, but I’ve found the new OSTs for most unfitting. They’re nice, but that’s it. I’m playing Final Fantasy, not Devil May Cry.
– The characters. Noel is just Noel, Serah is just Serah and all the other characters pivot around them. So far, they haven’t changed at all. You get to know them more… but nothing else. They’re completely static.
– Locations. It’s hard to describe how I feel towards them, they’re good, but they look to me a bit generic. They’re all so dull and for most they’re not as well characterized as before. I’m not anymore in that specific, particular place, I’m just in another, undefined place. Oerba is still stunning though.
And this pretty much sums up Final Fantasy XIII-2 so far to me. Review probably incoming once I’ll finish it.