Final Fantasy X-2 Game Review

This is not to be confused with Final Fantasy XII.

Final Fantasy X-2 came out in Japan in 2003 and rest of the world in 2004 on the Playstaion 2. It is once again made by Square / Square Enix. Then it was remastered for the PS3 and PS Vita in 2013, and was ported to PS4 in 2015. And the PC version was released in 2016. The version I played was on the PS4.

Characters

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Yuna returns, but this time as an actual protagonist. She is more …. girly this time around. I guess threat of impending doom disappearing does make you more relaxed. Yuna is no longer a summoner, as all Aeons no longer exist. Now she is a Sphere Hunter with the Gullwings.

 

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Rikku returns as well. Now she is a Sphere Hunter along with Yuna in the Gullwing. Like before, she is bright and wants to help Yuna with everything. Still cheery and not that smart, she is exactly like how you remembered her. Although a lot more revealing.

 

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Paine is a newcomer to the series and is on the same group as Yuna and Rikku. She is very quiet and is usually straight to the point. Reminds me of Auron, which is good.

 

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Leblanc, Ormi, and Logos are rival Sphere Hunters. Well, they are Team Rocket of Spira.

 

Story

The story takes place 2 years after the events of Final Fantasy X, and little after FFX: Eternal Calm. Now that Yuna and co defeated Sin forever, there is newfound peace in Spira.

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Yuna joined the Gullwing with Rikku and Paine to be a Sphere Hunter, people who finds magic spheres. Yuna is also looking for clues to where the guy that looks like Tidus might be.

 

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After the fall of Yevon religion and their hate for technology, the Machina are making a return, with that, there is new generation of super weapons at the horizon, this being the Vegnagun.

 

Gameplay

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The gameplay is … kind of similar to the previous game. There is still the turn based JRPG mechanic Final Fantasy is known for. But instead of having the characters be stationary, now they move around and some skills need time to cast.

 

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Instead of the level sphere and the sphere grid from FFX, FFX-2 uses the dresspheres, they are like changing classes on the fly, similar to later day FFXIII.

 

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Rather than being a linear story like the previous FF games, FFX-2 changed it to ore of mission based game.

To complete the game with 100% story completion, you have to get out of your way to do a lot of random stuff. Some of these stuffs include doing PR work for an amusement park company, finding this guy a girl he can marry, and so on.

 

the Good

The core combat of the game is very similar to the original game, so it is very good. Final Fantasy X has one of the best turn based RPG combat system and this one does not derive far from it.

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Seeing how Spira has changed was probably the favorite part of the game. How the people have to deal with disappearance or lack of faith in what was once the dominant religion, the return of forbidden technology, and how peace has brought forth new industries as well as new political struggles. And how these changes affect Yuna, who brought the Calm to Spira. How the society went from hating machine to loving them was great chance of perspective, and how people treat summoners and religion were fascinating.

 

This is still a Final Fantasy game, meaning the designs are gorgeous. While I am not fan of every costumes, the Full Throttle ones are definitely something to look at. The Esper costumers were nice as well.

 

the Bad

Where do I start.

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If you are playing this, you have to know that there is a secret ending you can get. And the only way to get this ending is to 100% the story aspect of the game. See that number on the top right, that is the ever present reminder of the game’s completion rate. So what does that mean? It means go grab a guide because you will not be able to do this alone, probably could, but it will be much tougher than necessary. I guess what I want to say here is that I played with a guide and followed it to the tee, and that kind of sucked the fun out of it. I realize this is my fault and resulted from my play style, but I still think it merits a mention. With other FF games, I usually did not use a guide except to get the ultimate weapons. This one, I started it with a guide, and followed it to the bitter end.

But what I realized was, the more I played the game, the more I grew to resent it for existing. I ended the game with 976% completion, by the endgame, I couldn’t care less about the secret ending as it depended so much on how many shitty minigames and grinding you were willing to do. I wanted to get that ending then I realize how much garbage I had to swim through, and decided I could be doing something I like.

 

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The game felt like moving from one mini game to another, and is loosely held by the main combat. To 100 percent the story, you have to find sex partners for monkeys, catch a Chocobo, do PR for an amusement company, help a guy get married, eavesdrop on the whole world, dig in the desert, win the indie game tournament, and so many more stupid mini-games. The main combat is a string that holds together mini games. I don’t know whose brilliant idea it was to let so many of these terrible throw-aways manifest the game to this degree.

To emphasize how much this game loves its minigames, let me just tell you there is quasi music minigame you have to beat to reach the final boss of the game. This minigame was so dumb and wasn’t even actual music…. and it seemed so out of place. I just wanted this whole experience to end as soon as possible.

 

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Everything, from navigating menus to combat, feels slower than FFX, and that is not a good thing. There are these little animations that play every time you select something, and it slows the process down. I want my snappy menus and combat from the first game back!

 

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A lot of the assets are recycled from the last game. I guess it is inevitable as it is a sequel that takes place in the same universe, but I wish we saw more exotic places of Spira rather than just revisiting the previous areas. Sure there are new maps, but so much of the old was reused. And the world seems a lot more emptier than before…. why? Should’t there be more people out now that apocalypse has been diverted?

On that note, the general feel of the game feels cheaper to me. With so many things like character models, environments, and so on reused, you would think the production would be better. The songs are less memorable, the story is less interesting, and the there is very little this sequel brings to the table. Feels like a quick cash grab and the idea of FFX-3 makes me want to turn away and sigh.

Camera angles were horrible. Not only is it always fixed and constantly changing, the angles change so that you get disoriented and go the undesired direction, and sometimes the camera angle is hiding what is obviously unhidden items.

 

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I was actually excited about Paine, one of the few new characters to join the roster. Why did she join the Gullwings? Does she have a great back story? What is her goal? But the guessing was far more interesting as her story was rather bland. With name like Paine and dressing like her sword, her backstory was very lackluster.

 

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The low point of the story is definitely Chapter 4, the penultimate episode. The whole episode revolves around…… putting up a concert, I am serious.

 

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This game had very weird thing going on. Some of the characters were really well made, but sometimes their face looks freaky, especially Rikku. It’s going to that uncanny valley effect…. shudders. Also at times the voice acting is so bad I genuinely couldn’t tell if a character was being sarcastic or honest.

 

Verdict

  • Will I play it again? No. I only played this game to see the ending. And to add another FF title to my finished game collection. I did not hate it, but felt more like an obligation.
  • Do I recommend it? Nope. I was constantly frustrate at this game for making terrible decisions. I don’t know who in Square Enix thought this game was okay to proceed with.

 

Final Thoughts

I had every intention of liking and getting 100% in this game. But the more I played it, the more frustrated and uncaring I got for this title. I have to say, this was the worst Final Fantasy experience I had since FFXIII-2. There were so many padding and BS mini-games that made this one of the most annoying game to play. I really wanted to like this one, but I ended up hating it.

I saw the secret ending on YouTube… it is not worth 100 percenting this game for that. The game does not do a good job explaining how that happens. If anything, the whole game is about how mislead the characters were… and this ending negates the emotional impact of the original’s ending. No one wins, except Square Enix because they got my money.

Hope you liked this, I hope you don’t have to go through what I did.

Gihoon

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6 thoughts on “Final Fantasy X-2 Game Review

  1. I’ve got this waiting for when I finally finish my revisit of FFX and Eternal Calm (got them on a Steam sale). I’ve never played it through but I’m kind of interested to see Yuna in a different light. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. It’s a long way away given the pace I’m playing through this. That said, I do want to see what happens after the events in FFX even if it isn’t amazing it will be a bit different.

        Liked by 1 person

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