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A DYsent Sequel
By: Jeremy, the Duke of Otterland
Two years after Nihon Falcom released the very first ports of the original Ys, they followed it up with a sequel, entitled Ancient Ys Vanished: The Final Chapter, an ironic title in retrospect. The game, like other installments of the series, would never reach American shores, and features solid gameplay like its predecessor, despite having a story deficit, as well.
As with the first Ys, the second features real-time battles forcing you to charge into your foes rather than hack and slash them. This time, Adol is much faster, and charging into enemies half a square upward, downward, leftward, or rightward will always yield the best results against even the most powerful foes, with little, if no, damage taken. Some spots throughout the game are narrow, though, so assaulting foes in this disposition can be a bit of a challenge, sometimes. However, this installment introduces magic, such as the Return spell, which can allow Adol to revisit any significant location heís already visited. Thereís also the Fire spell, which can make the gameís boss battles much easier.
Interaction with the second Ys is decent, moving along, with a conservative menu system and the ability to save anywhere. However, the game, like its predecessor, is essentially one titanic labyrinth with a few towns in between, so getting lost can be quite easy, although that Return spell I mentioned can be a bit of a help.
One of the second Ysí weak spots, though, is originality, the most glaring part being the recycled field graphics, not to mention characters, namely the protagonist Adol Christine, although some new aspects, such as the magic system, do appear in the sequel.
Equally weak is the storyline, although it does show strong links to its rather shallow predecessor. Once more, this installment follows the very obscure quest of Adol Christine, who is now in the land of Ys, and must stop evil before itís too late. How clichť.
The music, though, is just as strong as it was in the original Ys, with innumerable upbeat tunes, the best being the town themes. The sound effects, though, are as primitive as ever.
As Iíve said before, the second Ys title recycles the firstís nice field graphics, though the anime stills found throughout the title are much better, despite containing high discoloring.
The second Ys is just as easy as the first, with only some minor tough spots, and is as short as its predecessor is, beatable in one sitting in around the same timeframe, from four to eight hours.
While a solid sequel, the second Ys title unfortunately contains some flaws, especially its lack of story, preventing it from being a masterpiece. Nonetheless, if you enjoyed the first, youíll be right at home.
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