SUMMON NIGHT: SWORDCRAFT STORY 2 / Bandai / GBA
Swordcraft Story 2 really feels like playing the original GBA game over again - not only because it uses the same engine with basically no gameplay revisions, but also because all the characters seem like they just re-used archetypes from the first game and gave them a new look! The plot structure is even really similar - apprentice Craftknight with Great Destiny/Special Powers Inside has to save the world from Sleeping Demon Menace inside the Giant Labrynth In His Hometown when Evil And Arrogant Sorceror Breaks His Seal.
So this involves running about smashing random crates and barrels so you can find raw materials with which to build new and better weapons. Combat is exactly the same as that of the previous game, sort of a simplified version of the early Namco "Tales Of ..." games. You have one of a selection of familiars, who pop into battle and cast spells for you, and serve to be tl;dr outside of battle. The tone is very kiddie-Pokemon with only the odd (very tame) dirty joke thrown in for some color here and there. The two major thematic differences are that the intriguing Steampunk/Waterworld setting of the previous game is dropped in favor of a more generic fantasy/forest setting, and that there's more out-of-town areas that you go explore than there were in the first game. They also added a very simple fishing mini-game that is basically just stopping a series of sliding bars at the right time.
Blaire and his kinky fetishes
Unfortunately the game is just so samey I can't see how I can give it anything but the Meh rating the first GBA game got. It really is nearly the same experience all over again. The main thing the game needed was some tweaking and tune-up to make the battles less of a boring hack-fest and more exciting and varied, but they're really no different at all in this one. As with the original, it's really not a bad game, but it's hard to get excited about or stick with to the end.
* Gameplay Video