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Breath of Fire II (Game Boy Advance) artwork

Breath of Fire II (Game Boy Advance) review

"I was fortunate enough to find this copy for rent for my SNES as a wee lad, and much time was spent, and what a good time it was. "

I was fortunate enough to find this copy for rent for my SNES as a wee lad, and much time was spent, and what a good time it was.

Unfortunately, I never managed to buy it, and the store that rented it went out of business. I had a copy of BoF1, but my heart yearned for The goodness that only a sequel can, and at one point, did bring.

When this was announced for the GBA, I was jumping for joy (literally. It was scary. I lost a couple friends on that one.) I picked up the game and have been playing it ever since. Is it worth the time? Well......yes and no. But I'll get into that later.

Being a SNES port, this game lacks the modern graphics that are standard by today's youth, but as a fan of more cartoony graphics or anime style, the game does quite nicely. Graphics only need to serve the purpose of the game, not carry the game entirely.

The character designs are nice and well thought, And a good range of different characters (which is standard for a BoF title itself.) There are 9 playable, (8 normal and 1 hidden) And yes, you will use them all at one point. Its necessary to keep their levels high (its okay if you're lacking 1 or 3 levels for a character that you haven't used in a while...) But the game won't let you use a character when he comes into the party, then store him away, never to even be seen again. All of the characters have unique field and combat abilities of varying worth, but you will use all of them before the game's done. A good character system that hasn't been seen in much detail since the FFVI days.

The game does well in sound. As well as can be expected for a SNES game, and better than can be expected for a GBA game. The music is all good, I haven't found a tune I don't like, and the sound affects are far from annoying. The music sets the scenes well ( the dungeon music makes you feel uneasy, the town music making you feel relaxed.)

The storyline is strong, something thats not seen in many rpg's lately. It starts off strong, and from as far as I've gotten, remains just as involving. A fair portion of it is spent in ''fetch'' missions, someone has a problem so you help them out, but that never really gets dull, as the problems make it to where you genuinely care about these characters. And often, you're decently rewarded for these times, whether it be with a lot of money, a good weapon or item, or even a new character.

The battles are never dull. True, the random battles get a bit frequent at times, but this is made up for by battles that can be very quick. If you're strong enough, most ''annoying'' battles can be passed with a simple Auto-Battle command. Other times, serious thought and strategy is needed, as ALL of the characters stats and abilities come to affect his or her performance in the battles. You aren't really forced to take a certian set of characters into any one scene (save for ryu, which is just the main character or the character that is the scenario's focus), which will help in making the player feel comfortable with the characters that he or she likes.

And get this, AT the moment, I'm actually voluntarily building up character levels, even with the characters I don't like...It's that fun.

The game takes a while, but isn't so annoyingly long that you quit half way through and don't pick it up again for a while. (It litterally took me like...2 years to beat FFVII)

The game gets into some of the nice things that make a BoF game fun. It involves Uniting with the Shaman System to upgrade and tweak your characters, Fun decisions with the dragon morphing, Plus all the little side games, such as Hunting or fishing. Plus, sometimes the urge to just get out and explore takes over, and you end up finding items or skills you aren't supposed to yet, or fighting enemies that are a bit out of your league.

And while I''m on that subject, The enemies are a blast to just explore and find. Rare is the enemy thats just an ''updated version'' of an older one (although they do exist). The detail put into the graphics and animations of both the enemies and characters is amazing, especially for such a game as this one.

For BoF2 SNES veterans, the added ability to run and to quicksave are god-like.

But, as with all good games, this one has its flaws. They're minor, but they ARE there. The translation is..ugh. Sentences are gone incomplete, punctuation is terrible, and sometimes I've had to restart, because the choices for questions weren't programmed into the right places, and I accidentally picked the wrong one.

And my biggest beef with this game: the 30 dollar price tag. If you have th money, by all means, get it. Save it for later if you beat it, cause this is one of those games that you need to come back and relive every couple years or so. However, With the vast sea of choices for your gaming buck nowdays, you could settle with just a rental for this one. It might be best, cause there's not much replay in this game. Like I said, A bi-annual playing is okay, but its not something that you'd be dying to go back through and finish again instantly after you've conqured the last boss.

But still, this isn't a game that should be passed by, by any means. I intend to go through and play BoF1 when I finish this, and after that, play through (and actually finish) BoF3 and 4.

If you're a fan of the RPG Genre, new or veteran, get this game. Its a solid play that will hold your attention for a good 25-30 hours...

nf's avatar
Community review by nf (Date unavailable)

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