Magna Carta 2 is a breath taking game with an interesting and twisting story that draws players in. You play as Juto, a man who has lost his memory. The game opens with Juto awakening on a boat being hoisted onto shore. As the first few moments of game play unfold, you learn that Juto is on Highwind Island, which is currently under the control of the Southern forces. They are excavating a mysterious weapon known as the Guardian. They hope to use this weapon to oppose the Northern army and their monster weapons known as Sentinels. The peaceful island is quickly entrenched in a power struggle as both sides seek to gain control of this power, Juto and his unknown past and powers dragged in along for the ride
The game play is pretty much your standard role playing game affair, there are the magic users and the more physical types, such as Juto. Players are free to cycle through and control any number of characters that join your party, each offering their unique abilities. What is different to the game is how the characters power up their moves for their special attacks. As you battle, you build up what is known as Kan. It is the source of power in Magna Carta. Each character has a specific type of Kan that they need to build up adding to this is that some areas will start you off instantly with a certain number of Kan, making it much more ideal for some characters and much less for others. It becomes a game of balancing your party to make up for your weaknesses and play somewhat strategically. Adding to the need to play strategically is the stamina system built into Magna Carta. As you fight, your character drains his or her stamina until it enters what is known as over drive. Over-drive allows you to deal out more damage for a limited amount of time. After over-drive you enter into over-heat which is more or less a cool down period where you character is unable to preform any tasks. This is done to encourage over drive to be used sparingly, forcing players to weigh the risks and the advantages of this.
The graphics are quite nice and visually appealing. Cut scenes that play more like movies are amazing and well done. The characters are all well voiced. Juto is a likable character, even if he spends most of the early parts of the game whining. Game play in general can be fun and intense at times, especially during some of the harder boss fights. While the game forces strategic play, it doesn’t really take away from what the game has to offer players, in many ways adding to the over all experience. Dialogue between characters is spontaneous and funny most of the time. Cut scenes for the special moves look awesome, adding to the rpg experience.
The story seems extremely forced and parts of it are rather random and don’t make much sense. Dialogue while it has its good moments, tends to drag on forever as characters dance around what ever point they are trying to make. The over-drive and over heat system is among one of the most annoying systems out there. You spend half your fights charging, attacking and then abruptly backing away so you don’t over heat. It makes it hard for the characters who have to gain the physical type of Kan. Gaining enough on a consistent enough basis to use their power is nearly impossible. Boss fights tend to be rather ridiculous as the majority of the bosses seem to have the ability to heal themselves which drags the fight on forever.
Whim rating: 3.5/5
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