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Terra and Lightning's RPG Roundup

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Thursday, June 6, 2013

Episode 3: Phantasy Star II — Retro RPG Russian Roulette

Phantasy Star II
Platform: Sega Genesis
Japanese Release Date:  March 21, 1989
U.S. Release Date: March 1990 (before the original Final Fantasy!)
Difficulty: Freaking Hard 
Current Amazon Price: Sonic Ultimate Genesis: $14.96 for PS3 & Xbox 360
Current iTunes App Price: $2.99
Lightning's Review:

 Epic box art! Ummm...I didn't know Rolf was 70!

The Good
  • Do you think games these days are too easy? Then look no further! According to my not-so-comprehensive internet research, this game has been cited as one of the hardest RPGs ever to grace the planet. I do not disagree with this assessment. When you win a tough battle or find your way through a labyrinth of hell, you will feel that you have accomplished something, dammit.    
  • For reasons that I do not completely understand, the battles are oddly addictive. They require a good amount of strategy regarding choosing the right party members and knowing which attacks will be effective in particular situations. Don’t let its outward simplicity fool you!

The Bad
  • For such a challenging game, the final boss is lame-o. However, the boss before right before that is a huge douchebag, which makes me scratch my head a little. I fully admit to flipping the TV screen off when Dark Force was defeated. 
  • I put the game’s difficulty as a good; on the flip side, it can also be a bad thing. The battles can be hard, and you need some badass cartography skills to get through the long, meandering dungeons. Or GameFAQs. Even the great guides at GameFAQs, however, can be of little help at times.  

The Ugly
  • ‘80s shoulder pads! Monsters called Rabbitguts! (It’s as gross as it sounds.) A translation where you sometimes have no idea who is saying what! All of this and more awaits you! 

No verdant plains in the background, folks! Or lush forests! Just…Tron. 

     The Lowdown: Not for the faint of heart. If this is your first RPG, then this may scare   you off forever. However, if you like retro RPGs and are up for a challenge, then I say go for it. Winning this game is something you can BRAG ABOUT. 

     Podcast Credits:
     J. Arthur Keenes Band --"Videogame Theme." Creative Commons.

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