These games renewed my love for 2D RPGs, a genre I haven't touched since SNES. The soundtracks are definately a standout which you can hear in the trailer. All combat is in real time and remarkably fun. It works on a bump system so depending on what angle and direction you hit the enemy determines a sucessful hit. The story is pretty simple and the hero is a bland, enthusiastic young kid but the gameplay easily supports the game's few negatives. And after you're done the achievements are a lot of fun to go back and solve.
Ys I: The leveling system is so perfect in the first game. Every level makes you feel more powerful and that you've achieved something. The maps are serpentine but not too frustrating. The areas feel distinct and the art is just beautiful. The boss battles are really quite wonderful and the final boss was easily the hardest part of the game for me. It involved so much genuine strategy and forethought that finishing the game felt so darn satisfying.
Ys II: Very similar to the first game in music, art, maps, story, and combat but with the introduction of magic. One spell basically dresses you in a kangaroo onesie so you can talk to enemies. Every enemy. I honestly felt bad for killing hoardes of enemies that just wanted to go home but were there because I was their badguy. The biggest negative would have to be the final boss. They were a joke and the easiest boss in the game due to the items they give you beforehand. The third boss gets a special mention because they may be the most horrifying thing I have ever seen in 16-bit. Ys II is just more of a good thing and is immensely fun.
Posted: January 1st, 2014