Lunar 2: Eternal Blue Complete
Here it is, the Playstation remake of Lunar: Eternal Blue. This game takes place over 1000 years after the events of the first Lunar. (Why 1000 years? Why does every game have things take place 1000 years later?!? Why can't it be 900 years, or 632 years?!? Come on people be a little more original .... Okay back to the review ....) In Lunar 2 you play as Hiro, an adventurous youth raised by his Grandfather Gwynn, and Ruby, a flying pink furball who thinks she's a red dragon. Of course, along the way many more adventurers join to help save the Silver Star (What kind of a game only has 1 character?). The game starts with Hiro exploring the Dragon Ruins, which his grandfather told him to stay away from. At the same time Lucia is awakening on the frozen Blue Star.
Gameplay : 9/10
Lunar 2 uses the same basic game engine as Lunar 1. Outside of combat is a top-down view of the world, and inside of combat is a semi top-down/side-view combat. You can see the monsters outside of combat and if they catch you (or you catch them) you get into a fight. Hiro can dash to try and avoid the monsters, but he can only dash for a limited period of time (apparently he's very out of shape).
The game has a simple easy to use menu interface, that makes it quick and easy to do what you want. One problem I have is that when you but weapons in the shop, it doesn't tell you what your new stats will be if you buy the weapon. At least it's nice enough to tell you if the weapon is better or worse than what you have equipped.
Combat is turn-based with each character and monster getting to move once per turn. To attack an enemy you actually have to move your character next to the enemy, and each character has a limited amount of movement per turn. One thing I don't like is that Hiro's sword attacks seem to be more powerful than anything else (especially once you get Triple Sword), but it's not as bad as in the first Lunar.
The magic system is kind of interesting. Most spells have two levels, you first get the level 1 version, and then later once you level up some more, you get the second, more powerful, version. Personally I like the way the original Sega CD version did it better, you got magic experience points at the end of battle, and you could choose what spells to level up (using magic XP). But at least in this version you can save anywhere for free, in the original you had to use magic XP to save (What a horrible idea that was).
Overall I really like how the game plays, it makes it easy to do what you want, and explore the game. The combats are fairly quick and don't detract from the story. In addition you can always avoid most combats.
Difficulty : 7/10
This game really isn't too tough, although it can be harder than the original Lunar. Some of the bosses can be tricky, but with good strategies the game isn't very hard. Some of the "epilogue" dungeons are pretty difficult though. Having the game be easy really helps enjoy the story though.
Replayability : 9/10
There is so much stuff to do and places to explore in Lunar 2, that you're bound to miss some stuff the first time. It's definitely worth playing through again to find what you missed. You should also be careful the first time through, make sure to explore everywhere. Going back to places you've already been can have some interesting surprises.
There is a ton of dialogue in this game, if you rush through you'll miss most of it. You don't want to rush through the game and missing all the exciting text, and dumb jokes (well some aren't too dumb).
Of course the biggest reason to replay the game is to find all the Bromides (Pictures of the female character of the game, and we all know that this is the real reason people play the game).
Story : 10/10
I really like the story of this game. The game revolves around Lucia from the Blue Star. When you first meet Lucia she is naive when it comes to dealing with other people, but through the game she learns about human emotions, and discovers what it means to be human. The story is really pretty basic and simple but that simplicity helps it deal with Lucia becoming more human,
Of course you can't have a game without a big bad ugly dude trying to destroy the planet. That's what Zophar is for. In the beginning Zophar zaps Lucia's powers, and you must regain her powers, and find Althena so that you can stop Zophar from destroying the Silver Star. Along the way you'll get help from the 4 dragons, as well as an unexpected guest from the past. All leading to the final confrontation with Zophar.
Lunar 2 doesn't exactly have the flashiest of graphics, but I like them. The graphics have been upgraded from the Sega CD version, but still don't quite live up to other Playstation games. All the characters and monsters have a lot of really neat animations, overall the game has well-done 2-d graphics. For those who like 2-d graphics they'll be fine. If you're looking for fancy 3-d graphics, then look elsewhere.
The anime cutscenes are really nice though. Lunar 2 has over an hour of anime scenes which really help advance the story, and look really awesome. I personally like the style used in this game.
Sound : 9/10
Lunar 2 has good music that really helps sets the mood. I really enjoy the two song tracks ("Eternal Blue" and "Lucia's Theme"), unfortunately there isn't an intro that plays "Lucia's Theme", like the intro to Lunar : Silver Star Story. I personally like the song tracks from the first Lunar better ("Fighting Through the Darkness", the intro to the original Lunar; The Silver Star is my favorite) The game comes with a music CD that has most of the music from the game, which I think is a very nice bonus.
Overall Rating : 9/10
This is really one of my favorite games. I've always loved the Lunar series since I first played Lunar: The Silver Star for the Sega CD. For anyone who enjoys old school RPGs, I definitely recommend this game, for those who don't like old school RPGs, you should get the game anyway because I said so.
I should take time and mention the extras that come with game too. You get the three game disks (of course), you also get a making of Lunar 2 CD, which is worth watching once. There is a music CD, which I like a lot. You also get a real Lucia's Pendant, and some character stands (what these are for is beyond me).
As a final note, be sure to buy the official strategy guide, I get paid when you do (okay so I really don't). It's a hard cover guide, that has 300 pages of characters, monsters, a complete walkthrough, and lot's more. It contains some really neat manga made for Lunar 2, which is really funny. And, last but certainly not least, it contains the locations of all the Bromides, and stickers of al the Bromides.