There will be story-related spoilers. The first part will be less spoilish and on overall thoughts, and the second part will be more on the characters and story. There will be a large blank space in-between the two parts.
I'll probably also make another post on the characters later.
Without a doubt, the path to collecting cards in this game is much harder than the previous. However, I think this is actually normal. Because the previous game abused a mechanic to win games in 1-turn in order to quickly collect cards. They made sure you couldn't abuse this, by limiting the handicap you can put on yourself and your allies. Also, in this game, you earn points to buy booster packs to get cards. Giving yourself handicap will lower the amount of points you get. So you have to work to get what you want.
|Card completion message|
Story-wise, it is a completely new game, not a remake. So the story is definitely new. I'd say it wasn't bad. The side-quests sometimes had forced developments to get you to fight (because if everyone could just talk things out, you wouldn't have a game), but well, you'll just have to give that to the game. Also, the length is pretty good. There are plenty of quests in the main story, even more side-stories for each main story, and a lot of challenge quests, which have no side-stories and is a flat 10-map run with handicap enemies of all kinds.
66 story quests, 70 challenge quests .
There's definitely enough to satisfy you. Including the start-dash version, I used over 80 hours to get to this point.
The music is as great as ever, from the usual Itou Kenji, though there is no longer 1 BGM per map. At least from what I have noticed, but it seems there aren't that many BGM. Of course, I have not compared, so I'm not too sure. At least feels that way. Of course, the BGM themselves are high quality.
However, one complaint that can't really be helped is the AI. Of course, with so much freedom, it is hard to make an AI that is overly smart. In the first place, that'd be painful because it would be so hard to defeat. But the biggest problem is that you have a lot of team matches in the game, especially the challenge quests. And the AI can sometimes be SO STUPID, it is almost like 1 vs 3. Of course, the AI isn't just blindlessly acting. They try at all times to increase their overall Gain (Magic, assets, whatever you call them). They also try to match monsters to their terrain. All of this makes sense, but because the computer cannot think flexibly, they constantly make bad moves. Without going into detail, you won't care when the AI acts stupidly against you, but when they are on your side, you're gonna have to babysit them a bit.
Anyways, I suggest playing the game if you can. In the first place, there aren't many, if any, games that are like this game, so there really isn't a choice. Board game + card game = Culdcept, so... buy it. It's cheap too, compared to other games.
And yes, there is DLC, though mostly just visual-type DLC, such as avatar and dice skins. Nothing that affects the balance, so feel free to buy just what you want. I personally got the Miko set and Megane set. I didn't need the male businessman avatar in the Megane set though!
Spoilers after the large blank...
While some people would find the set avatar being used in the story mode as weird, there actually ends up being a good reason. The player is called on from another word to take the protagonist's place, after the protagonist dies from trying to solve the big problem. So your avatar is forced into the skin of another guy, which is why you are set as him.
The biggest surprise of the story is the heroine. People were all confused when the girl who seemed to be the heroine suddenly died in the start dash version. Was she gonna be revived or something? Nope, the true heroine that stayed with the protagonist to the end was Yuma, not Alicia. I'm sure a good number of us actually prefer that.
|Yuma (left), Alicia (right)|
Heck, practically none of the characters ended up the way people expected. For instance, your entire Resistance group gets killed off. Easily. Tennet dies off-screen.
Nighthawk, who seemed to be the Ryvern of Revolt, actually was a pretty good guy that had clear beliefs that lived to them. He even stayed with you most of the way through Part 2 of the story. There was even a scene where he's eating in your sister's house. Wow. He's also relatively challenging to face, because both his AI and book is well-balanced.
And of course, since the official website only introduced the characters of Part 1 (and not even all of them), ALL characters in Part 2 and Part 3 of the story were a surprise.
And man, the protagonist is one heck of a lucky guy. To think he has a sister (wow, anime siblings with similar hair color?!)
And a female knight character as a childhood friend
And yeah, I know that the protagonist isn't really the same person and only looks like him, but close enough.
Oh, and you even have another girl who likes the protagonist enough to keep his corpse enclosed in crystal inside her room. Hieee......
And Alicia, though not the heroine, at least gets to reappear in her original form. Gen? Tennet? No one cares.
I guess you can say the "big baddies"were a bit lame. You can also say they are meant to be that way, which is fine, but one thing is that the 1st big baddy and the 2nd big baddy were the same type of character. Act calm... calm.............. AND NOW I AM LAUGHING EVILLY BWAHAHAHAHA!
As for other characters, Hypno... Your hat...
I liked the Gyaru-speech pattern, gothic lolita-fashion, psychotic twin loli sisters. You see crazy gothic lolis fairly often in anime, but I don't recall the last time I saw one that talked like a gyaru.
I wish they had more appearance time, but there is no reason to, after all. I also wish Rietta from the previous game appeared. Maybe as a DLC?! Please?!
Anyways, time to get 4 of every card.