A Return to the World of Ivalice
Once again we return to the most used world in the Final Fantasy universe, Ivalice. Previously used in the last two Final Fantasy Tactics, as well as Final Fantasy XII, the Ivalice of Final Fantasy Tactics Advance 2 is the true world of Ivalice, unlike Final Fantasy Tactics Advance’s imagined Ivalice. When a young boy decides to open up an ancient book and write his name in it, he is transported to the parallel world of Ivalice where he falls from one adventure into the other. The only way for him to return home is to write the stories about those adventures in this mysterious book that got him there in the first place. How convenient.
Final Fantasy Lite
It’s the last day of school before the summer vacation for all the students, except for the main character, Luso. He gets to clean up the library first. But as he is straightening up the stacks of books, he discovers an ancient, medieval style book, which he promptly opens and writes his name in. This triggers a magical transportation of Luso to the world of Ivalice, where he makes a pact with a clan and then joins them on a series of exciting adventures throughout this world. It just so happens that this is the precise thing that Luso has to do in order to be transported back to his world.
Obviously this storyline leaves a fair amount to be desired, but Final Fantasy games have a history of taking more than sixty hours easily, only to complete just the main story line, leaving you little to no time to stop and smell the flowers or get lost into side quests. With a mere fifty hours under my belt I have more than enough time to take the storyline to Final Fantasy style epic proportions. As the main story line is slowly building up, the numerous side quests are offering a wide variety of diversion ranging from another clan’s vengeance against a giant spherical chicken, to defeating the five kings of the mageclan Cinquleur. The development and stories of those native to Ivalice, both party members and NPC’s, is also highly interesting, and holds your interest throughout the game.
The gameplay for FFTA2 is very similar to FFTA and Final Fantasy Tactics on the Playstation, which is a good thing. It is still a turn-based tactical RPG, utilizing a square grid for movement and targeting. However, what makes FFTA2 different from its predecessors is where the game truly shines.
The biggest change, without a doubt, is how the judges and the laws are handled; in FFTA, laws were laws, if you broke one you would be penalized, and possibly even thrown in prison. In FFTA2, laws are more of a reward system. After you finish choosing your units for a battle, you get to choose a clan privilege that gives you an edge over your opponent. This can be anything as subtle as a slight boost in the amount of damage you deal or increasing your speed slightly, to something as obvious as a Regenga buff, allowing all of your units to continuously recover health throughout the fight.
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