Review by joemax45
Magna Carta 2 is best kept xbox secret!!!
Throughout my xbox experience I have repeatedly found myself perusing the shelves of my local gamestore searching for a good role playing game to no avail. I play a variety of games, but my favorites have always been rpgs and while I didn't know it, I was waiting for Magna Carta 2. Currently I am well into the second disc, but I felt the need to share my joy with the world! For me, a good rpg has interesting characters, great story, and a fun battle system, as well, of course, as plenty of those glorious "level up" moments. Does Magna Carta 2 deliver? Heck yeah! So lets break it down and check out each of these aspects of the game.
Characters: Ok, so I know amnesia/mysterious past has been done before, but there is a reason so many games use that concept. ITS FUN! I love the way the story slowly unraveled revealing more and more about each of these characters and their individuality. Not only do all the characters have strong personality, but their design is also fascinating. You have your tank characters, mages, ranged fighters, and everything in between. What did I love most about the characters? You know how every rpg has that really annoying kid character that says stupid crap the whole game and then is equally useless in battle? Not here. In MC2 you will find times when you are trying to decide which of them you want to use! With so many cool special moves it keeps the game fast paced to switch them all around. Bottom line: Cool and interesting characters that are all equally useful in battle means lots of varied fun!
Story: I kind of broke this down a bit when I mentioned that it revisits some familiar role playing themes, but I am also happy to say that each of these themes is rehashed out in a new way. What can I say? Im still a sucker for Cloudesque storylines so I was pleased with this one big time. And the plot secrets don't just involve one of the characters, but rather all of your characters. Again, consistency in the story through these various and cool characters really made me feel like it was a nice interconnected storytelling process. I can say that the only place for improvement would have been to tell the story through cut scenes more often then just the character/text box method. But there are several cutscenes and each of them are very cool. Bottom line: Familiar story told through traditional means sparks up at a few points with awesome cutscenes and jawdropping secrets.
Battle system: Ok, so this is in my opinion the most important aspect of any game. If the fighting in a game is not fun, and I find myself avoiding enemies then I take that as an important sign that a game is not successful. But with MC2 I found myself always searching out the little baddies so I could demolish them and take their cash, experience and sometimes even their souls. This game is absolutely FILLED with bosses and minibosses as well as other enemies to fight. How does the fighting work exactly? It all revolves around your stamina bar. Each attack or special move uses stamina, and if all your stamina is spent then you either chain to another character for a special combo or just wait until it refills. If you use so much stamina that you "overheat" then a chain/combo with a second character can cause a "chain break" that instantly refills all stamina. Also to be noted is the huge increase in attack power when in overheat modes. I like this system because it keeps the game from just being another button masher, and yet keeps the pace up unlike some totally turn based rpgs. What you end up with is a fast paced battle system that requires some timing and strategy, as well as regular use of all those cool characters. Other awesome stuff about the battle system? Each character has TWO styles to fight with (for example, the main character Juto can equip either a one handed sword or a huge two handed sword. very cool.). The other two things I loved about this battle system are the skill system which reminded me of Star Ocean, and a weapon enhancement system that is like materia for a sword that only enhances weapon stats. Bottom line: Gain levels, spend skill points, enhance weapons, kill huge bosses, perform sweet special moves and if you've got skills do it in a nice chain break combo.
Conclusion:I say that this is not only a good game, but is the best kept secret on xbox. Why MC2 is not getting more attention idk, but I can tell you its a heck of a lot better than that square enix crap that has been rolling out. Right now on xbox, MC2 is the cream of the rpg crop. Check it out!!
Buy or rent?
I say rent first if you are unsure (I always try to if possible) but I recommend buying because it is a forty plus hour game with easy replay value.
final score: 9/10
Product Release: Magna Carta 2 (US, 10/13/09)
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