Content of the article: "Playing the often overlooked JRPG Lufia II: Rise Of Sinistrals for SNES, my thoughts."
I had the first lufia game for snes growing up, and I didn't really like it. It had way too many fetch quests, random encounters, and was just annoying to play. Because of this I never gave lufia 2 a chance.
Now almost 20 years later I'm finally giving it a shot. I'm about 10-15hrs in and it's legitimately a great turn based jrpg.
Lufia 2 takes everything wrong with the first game and fixes it. Random encounters are only on the world map and there's not that many. In dungeons you can see the enemies and when you touch them you go into battle. You could freeze them though by shooting arrows at them so many could be skipped. This makes it much less tedious
Battling in lufia 2 is turn based which is a bit out of vogue these days but I still find enjoyable. One thing that makes it unique is each character has a rage meter (called IP) and when this fills you can do a special attack based on your equipment. This adds another level of strategy as the strongest equipment isn't always the best strategically.
Turn based does get repetitive (it's just a bit dated these days) but nothing terrible. Having an emulator helps speed it up if you're trying to grind.
Story wise the game isn't anything to write home about. Think early Final fantasy (before 6). Nothing groundbreaking, typical good vs evil so far. Especially if you played the first you know the plot but evil powerful beings trying to take over the world you're the only one who can stop them blah blah blah.
This is where the game really shines. Dungeons are full of puzzles that I think rival Zelda games. You have items to use in the dungeon you need to help solve puzzles (your bombs, arrows, etc) and some are legitimately very very challenging and creative. I think this is where lufia 2 really shines.
Ancient cave (Dynamically generated dungeon:)
I haven't gotten to this point yet, but the game contains a dynamically generated dungeon that is 99 floors and like it's own self contained game. You get items you can only use in this dungeon and it apparently could take longer than the entire game I've heard. People love it for the challenge and replay value, not really my thing but I respect just how ahead of its time it is. These days rogue-like games are a dime a dozen but this was never really seen much during the snes days.
This apparently could be it's own game and the fact it's included as a side thing is pretty cool
Another rather involved side quest involves capsule monsters. You can almost think of it like Pokemon, where you get 7 of these guys and they evolve based on what you feed it. There's different types, each have their own levels and fight alongside you in battle as an NPC. You can't control their actions but can make them stronger, etc. Another cool side quest that you can ignore or get really involved in.
the music is pretty great in this game, similar to the first. It's a solid snes soundtrack with plenty of good songs. This is my favorite so far:
. The only annoying thing with the sound in the game is the sounds when there is dialogue that some old jrpgs used to do to represent talking. But it's minor in the scheme of things.
It's hard for me to give a fair assessment of this. I grew up in the nes era and that's my baseline, so my idea of difficult differs from modern. I think most new games are too easy. I found lufia 2 to be pretty similar to jrpgs of the time so I don't think it's too difficult. I've died a few times against some bosses but haven't gotten stuck yet or had to grind really. It's a matter of fine tuning your strategy.
Some of the puzzles are legitimately challenging, but I usually figure them out or use a walkthrough if I don't feel like wasting too much time. There's one in here that is optional but is actually notorious for being insanely difficult… Like often near the top of lists of most difficult puzzles. I probably won't bother with that.
Ancient cave (the Dynamically generated dungeon) is also apparently quite the challenge, and then there's a super optional boss as well if you really want a challenge.
I'm really enjoying lufia 2 so far. Like I've stated I'm not done with it yet so I guess my opinion could change but it's lauded as one of the hidden gems of RPGs. If you've never played a snes jrpg I recommend starting with something like Chrono trigger, final fantasy 3 (6 in japan), Mario rpg, secret of Mana, etc. Those are better games overall, but if you're a jrpg veteran this is a definite must play. I can't believe I've been putting this one off for so many years.
They apparently remade this game for one of the DS systems but they completely changed it so much it's like a different game (no longer turn based, no world map, etc). I never played so can't comment on the remake.
- I finished A Link to the Past yesterday
- WSIB – JRPG to Unwind at Night
- Wow…. just wow… Troll-thesda totally got me 🤣
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