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Lunar 2: Eternal Blue Complete - Review

Greater Than the Sum of Its Parts...

By: Red Raven


Review Breakdown
   Battle System 6
   Interface 7
   Music/Sound 7
   Originality 6
   Plot 9
   Localization 10
   Replay Value 7
   Visuals 5
   Difficulty Very Hard
   Time to Complete

25-40 hours

 
Overall
number
Criteria

Title Screen

   Ahhh, Lunar. It's good to know that games that look like they could have been released on the SNES can still be one of the best RPG series on the Playstation. Following in the footsteps of the original Lunar, Lunar 2 features average graphics, but above average story telling, voice acting, and simple fun. Not to mention that Working Designs keeps pushing the limits of "going the extra mile" with even more extras than the first game. A very worthy sequel overall.

   If you're a veteran of the first Lunar game, then you're going to be right at home with the combat system, since it's the same as last time. The turn-based combat system has a small factor of positioning, meaning that just because you want to attack an enemy doesn't mean you always will, especially if it's on the other side of the battlefield. Lunar 2 also features no random battles, thus all enemies can be seen and avoided. Avoiding enemies is harder than usual however, as you can only run in short bursts. Besides that, everything is pretty much the same.

   Speaking of difficulty, looks can deceive. This is one of the hardest games on the market, ranking right up there with Star Ocean 2 and Vagrant Story. Typical battles will quickly deplete your MP and healing items, leaving you to face the dreaded Game Over screen many times over the course of the game.

Graphics definitely blow you away...right back to the SNES.
Graphics definitely blow you away...right back to the SNES.  
This difficulty does not hinder it, it actual brings about strategy as you try to kill the many hard bosses different ways. It also helps that you may save absolutely anywhere, at anytime in this game. A very nice feature that I hope to see future games adopt.

   The original Lunar featured a main music melody and that melody was subtly in every other song. That's not the case with Lunar 2, at least if it did, it's hard to recognize. But for the most part the music is light-hearted and fits the scenes nicely. The battle voices return but thankfully Working Designs made the option of turning those off.

   Speaking of voices, they seem a lot better made than in the last game. In addition to having full speech during the many anime sequences, there's also voice acting during important scenes throughout the game. But speaking about the anime sequences, they do seem of slightly less quality than the previous Lunar, being very grainy at times.

   The plot though, is just as enduring and heart-warming as last time. In Lunar 2, 1000 years have passed since the events of the first game and things are pretty peaceful. The player assume the role of Hiro, a young adventurer seeking...well...adventure, along with his loud-mouthed pet red dragon, Ruby. They meet up one day with Lucia, a beautiful woman who claims to be from the Blue Star, in some mysterious ruins, and the story blooms from there. While being a little predictable at times, by the end of the second disk you'll be receiving one surprise after another. But the greatest things about Lunar are the characters themselves. There's a lot of great interaction between them and other NPCs, and of course WD did another outstanding job with the localization. They remain the only company capable of making talking to regular townspeople really worthwhile.


Fear the anorexic dragon.
Fear the anorexic dragon.  

While Lunar: Eternal Blue Complete cannot visually compare with some of the newer RPGs out on the market, those newer RPGs cannot hold a candle to fabulous plot, dialogue, and simple extras that this game provides. While Lunar 2 can be beaten in less than 30 hours, it features a fabulous 10-hour epilogue that features even more dungeons and even a second ending, not to mention more of those racy bromides. With all these things combined, Lunar: EBC proves the old adage true: "The whole is greater than the sum of its parts".

Enjoy.







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