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Valkyrie Profile 2 - PS2


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This game is quickly turning for me into one of those I love it and I hate it type of experiences. The story and presentation are fantastic. The combat system is also great - but this is also where the problem comes into play.


The game has a learning curve / difficulty level that I'm finding rather hard to understand. Okay, I get the combat isn't going to work trying to button mash and after a few hours I really was able to get into the swing of things. However, I'm only a short way into the game (chapter 3 I think) and at the point where earlier areas are a cakewalk but any of the newer areas I have access to I get my ass absolutely handed to me. The three areas I can explore but clearly have no business in are the forbidden forest (which seems to be an optional quest and clearly I am not e for it), the mines (perhaps another optional area) and a water shrine - an area where I can barely limp along however I get to the leaders and they tend to bust out healing potions that bring them back to full strength whenever I make a bit of progress.


So for anybody who has spent some time with the game - do you have any tips to get somebody started. Should I stick with a basic 4-party group and not swap out the other characters? Should I be trying to level up my Einherjars so that I can release them? Are using the right sealstones in an area really that much of a make it or break it concept? At this point I've been trying to find the sealstones and restoring them back to the earth vein. And with many of those - I don't know what the effect even means - The one in the mines (which costs 20,000 crystals to restore) has an effect of "turn to fire" - turn what to fire? - just for an example. This is all added to a skill system which is really nicely done - but also not exactly that intuitive.


Please, discuss. I'd be very interested to see if anybody else is playing the game and what your thoughts are.

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Okay, so after spending some more time with the game this morning, I'm back to getting my groove on in the areas that were causing me much pain before. I'm not really sure what I did differently but I did revist one of the dungeons to power level a bit and after that - went back to the forest that was kicking my butt. I'm not sure if I just got luckier with some of the enemies, or what exactly - but was still able to get through the area. Then it was off to the water temple - and while the map is still a bit confusing - the boss battle was quite a bit of fun. I just have to wonder if I'm going to be back to hitting a brick wall continuing forward, but time will certainly tell. Oh, and for the record, I've decided (at this point) to just stick with the main cast of characters. We'll see if leveling up the "extras" later proves to be valuable / requried.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Okay - so at just about the 60 hour mark, this game has been offically completed. Now that I've played through the full game, it has one hell of a learning curve, but once you figure out the mechanics and start to really get how things work, it really is quite a fantastic game. The combat system in the game is a great change of pace from most rpgs and the variety in the enemies and dungeons means that you can't simply get the "best" equipment at the time and stick with it - you'll be swapping weapons and even more importantly accessories throughout the game depending on the situation you find yourself in. Also - no random battles as that's important to some of you out there. Plus when you finish the game it gives you an option to start all over at a higher difficultly level (apparantly you can do this 50 times with the game getting progessively harder on each play through - why anyone would want to do such a thing is beyond me - but there you go). Also, since the word "Square" is on the box - I'll mention that the cutscenes are a beauty to look at (including the in-game stuff) and not heavily overdone. I do, however recommend turning off the full animation for the limit breaks (um, soul crushes -my bad) as while they're a lot of fun to watch for a while, they do get old. But the fact that you CAN turn them off is rather nice. Now that the main game is complete - it's time to head off to the final optional dungeon which is actually designed for parties that have completed the main quest and want to "test their mettle". Based on the 1st floor (of 5) that I've played - they're not kidding. But the rewards do seem quite nice for the effort. Also, since I find myself playing games (at least the longer ones) for the story as well as the gameplay - this one does deliver.


Bottom line - if you like JRPGS - and you like a game to challenge you. And you like a nice long meaty quest - go find this one now before it becomes as overtly expensive on Ebay like the 1st one did :)

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