- Publisher: NIS America
- Release Date: Jan 20, 2009
Mar 22, 2012To me, Ar Tonelico II is the best of the trilogy, and I have very good reasons to say that. First things first though, I have the PAL version which means I had no big bugs (especially the game breaking bug near the end of the game). Basically, for what I heard, the PAL version is less buggy, so if I miss bugs it's because I haven't got many.
Anyway, this game is still one of the best Jrpgs I've ever played: the story it's complex but actually I really got into it, especially since this game has some political issues too, and honestly I always found hard to play games with political plots, and in here...I actually understood it. Not only that, the setting is interesting, since it's set on the second tower and it has its own story too, it has different issues comparing to the first tower; in general, the setting was immersive and the story was fitting. The characters are various, although the main protagonist does look uninvolving at first, but the best characters are probably the 3 Reyvateils: they are very different and their "cosmo" shows it, without mentioning that one of them is probably one of the most "original" I've ever seen (I won't spoiler though). And of course, cannot forget the music: this game has probably one great soundtrack to listen and to praise, and I hope I'm not the only one who mentions it (try out Replekia or Sublimation, just to mention a few). Also, the battle system got a huge improvement in my opinion: it's a lot fast paced and it's splitted into phases (attack and defense), which are actually different: in attack phase, you attack in order to improve the reyvateil casting power AND also to improve your attacks, since vanguard can not only do multiple attacks, but also do extra attacks (and they do massive damage too, although not as strong as a Reyvateil magic); in defense phase, you actually have to time your parries, or you get insane damage: that's honestly a nice idea, and all I can say is that the battle system is, in few words, improved over the first game to me, and I enjoyed to do the battles...but this system maybe it's too strong and, in fact, the bosses don't really need much strategy: just charge up, defend, unleashe over 1 million damage...
To be fair, the biggest flaws (EXCEPT the bugs that I NEVER had. Just in case nobody read it before) are the really REALLY worsened graphics, since the previous game had much more detailed characters, while in here they look blurry, and the kinda "lacking" 3d enviroment: I liked the fact they tried to innovate, but the 3d needed more work I believe. Also, unlike the first, the general terms like "third generation" or "Origins" aren't properly explained and, sadly, might confuse some people that never played the first game first (like me). Anyway, this game is great and huge, with 4 endings to achieve, synthesis system (the usual detail from any Gust's rpg) and a quite interesting "visual novel" style as well: I really enjoyed this game and, really, the only reason to not try it's either you don't like jrpgs or you want more enhancement rpgs (like Final Fantasy or Dragon Quest). It's definitely not for all tastes, but still worth a try.… Expand
Jun 18, 2013I somehow missed this game's release back when it came out, and now wondering how I missed it, seeing as I research games especially JRPGs.
Anyhow, as for my review: Great battle system. Great story. Great characters. IMO, great all the way around. And there is supposedly a glitch at the last Raki battle, only if she gets to do her special attack on her 3rd turn (your 3rd defense turn). But I had Cloche's fan club at 78, and when I used Replakia, I finished Raki off by the 2nd turn. So? I had no glitch!
If I had had problems with this glitch, I'd have given this game a 6 or 7, but I give it a 10), because I experienced no glitch.
The battle system kinda sorta reminded me of Valkyrie Profile, in that each character has their own button assigned to them. But this actually went even BEYOND that with what you could do.
I love this game, waaay better than the newer PS3 one. I still have to play the first one, Melody of Elemia. I'll review that too when I am done.… Expand
Jul 13, 2011Well let's get a few things out of the way. 1) if you didn't like the first one you won't like this one. 2) I am not marking this game down on the bad localization since it wasn't made by the people who made the game, not mention the infamous one can be avoided and the rest don't really hamper much. 3) This game has innuendo, and while some complain about if you can handle a bus ride home during high school you can handle this. Now that's out of the way this game is an improvement of basically everything in the first game. I enjoyed the Characters a lot in this game and like last game their development is fabulous. The concept of chatting with shop owners was a nice little perk which makes the whole world feel more alive. Once again the mind diving returns longer and more detailed than the last. Though this time around you can't go through everybody's full mind dive experience in one game, which is a nice touch unless your a huge fan of polygamy. And the combat is vastly improved and you don't get a bunch of magic you will never use. As for combat you can block attacks instead of just standing there and getting hit with doom lasers and such. While it's still easy and not really hard it's surprisingly fun to block attacks and then annihilate them with killers dolls formed by singing, or unleashing the closest thing I've ever seen to a Death Star. While the story is the same old "We got to save the world" thing every JRPG goes through the ending gave me a nice fuzzy feeling.… Expand
Mar 20, 2013I can appreciate a good old Gust game once in a while, perhaps not to the point where I can suffer through 2 of them back to back but these games have a certain charm to them that I just can't find in any other games. Be it the cheesy dialogue that can only come from the mind of a japanese developper, the use of adorable sprites wich Gust are known for in almost all of their PS2 titles, the recurring sound effects and environments, all of these things contribute to a smile forming on my mug when I play these games, and Ar Tonelico II was no different. After having played and thoroughly enjoyed the first game in the series, I had very high hopes for this one, and it mostly did not disappoint. The soundtrack is typical Gust, beautiful and sweet, the hymns alone are worth buying the soundtrack for (or if you're lucky and got the collector's edition you already have it). The story, while cheesy is memorable and will keep you interested for the most part, overall there is nothing fundamentally wrong with this game, game play has been dumbed down, which saddened me somewhat and combat has been easy in any Gust game to date, no point in complaining about that now. I do however have one major complaint, the localization... oooh boy did NISA screw up with this game, I would go as far to say that if I were the translator for this game, I would be utterly ashamed of myself. I have seen typos in games before, it happens to the best, but some of the text in this game is littered with mistakes, ranging from typos to mixing up genders to even grammatical errors that would make a 12 year old cringe. Suffice to say that in a game relying mostly on text for dialogue, this becomes very annoying rather quickly, and while not game breaking whatsoever, I must say that the localization for this game feels incredibly unprofessional if not downright a complete mess, wich is strange for a game coming from a company wich has delivered amazing localizations so far. Overall I would recommend this game to die hard RPGamers, casual gamers might find this game just a tad too japanese for their tastes, but it is still worth a try at the very least. Though I will warn you, if you're someone who can't stand spelling errors, stay far away from this title, you will not live through it.… Expand
Oct 1, 2014One of the best JRPG ever released. Assuming of course you don't mind some dating sim elements.
But those dating sim elements are a strength to this game, not a weakness. While the first AR was pretty bland with the 'Diving' (outside some superb music) AT2 heroines have quite the depth. Their topics are well presented. No party is wrong. They have their motives and it's up to find out them. What differs is you can only go with one heroine.
But what got me hooked THRICE for a 40 hour+ journey was the combat. It's the best combat system in JPRGs. Period. You have the vanguard who melees, you tell the back row of Reyvateils to cast a nuke and then what? Enemy turn. And you get to block every. single. attack they make. Be it a lvl1 slime or the biggest baddy. The better you block, the less you and your reyvateil take damage. But if you block too late trying to get the perfect block... She takes the full hit.
And I haven't even mentioned the music and VA. I played the JP version so can't comment on NA version, but the JP version was the best OST I've ever heard.
My favourite JRPG of all time.… Expand
It's become a cautious recommendation of a game that would've otherwise been a huge recommendation. As it stands, Ar Tonelico II is still a brilliant RPG -- albeit one with some borderline creepy bits and plenty of giggle-worthy dialogue -- but in this case, buyers most definitely should beware.