Project X Zone 2: A brave but boring world.
Project X Zone 2 is the second crazy-rostered Strategy anime-style RPG on the Nintendo 3DS where you can play as characters from SEGA, Namco Bandai and Capcom. I had a copy of the first title which I loved starting, off but after a while I got bored as the game kept changing between characters and locations. This was fun in terms of dialogue and seeing crossovers, but as the story has a basic narrative – which I guess would be easier with so many characters from so many games in one – I was hoping that this second title would be a great improvement. Here are my thoughts.
When starting to play the game, it went straight into two characters I’d seen a lot in the previous title, which is good to see as they are keeping to a story of sorts. The problem is, while I continued playing, it just felt too similar to the first game; so similar in fact, it felt almost like a carbon copy with a tweak to the story – a few different characters and dialogue. I continued playing the game hoping that I would find something new but unfortunately this wasn’t the case. I know the fans of the first game would say “Well if it’s not broke…”
When it comes to the story, this game is made for fans of JRPG/Strategy RPG/Anime, plus fans of the characters involved, and if you are not within these demographics you may lose interest in playing very quickly. The story is pretty much a ‘Good Vs Evil’ match up between heroes and villains from most of the game worlds collided within a crossover title. It’s simple and effective for what the game is, but with an RPG type game I was hoping for more, especially when we are looking at a sequel.
Like the first title, this game suffers from going through a lot of characters scene by scene, which can get confusing. Once past the first few chapters you then see previous characters come and interact with the new. The dialogue can be fun with great comedy which helps the flow; but if you are a player who likes to skip these scenes and just go straight to the game, you may get lost as to what’s going on, which will confuse you and may put you off the game due to a lack of understanding.
On the subject of gameplay, this game is a tactical RPG (role-playing game) where you take turns with your character to move across a battlefield until you are within fighting reach of an opponent. At this point, the game screen changes from an isometric(ish) overworld-style to a 2D fighter-style where you execute moves and special moves to defeat your opponent. You can do this using several teamed up characters, with a possible side character to pull off extra attacks using a basic up attack, left attack and multiple button strikes to execute a special attack.
As this is a tactical RPG, when receiving attacks you can sacrifice XP or SP to defend or counter; this helps in the strategy element to keep your team alive as well as using health and item pick ups. Attacking when in the 2D plane works as so: standard attacks with a single button press or directional button press, a possible side character commanded using the R button, or if your power meter is full, you can pull off a joint attack where your two characters combine powers to do a very cool-looking, partially-animated super move. All of the moves look awesome and simple button commands keep the game from getting a bit tiresome.
You can level up to learn new attacks and buy and sell items and equipment at the shop, this keeps the game progressive but I didn’t find it enough to keep me playing.
Go to page 2 for more thoughts on the game plus conclusions.