Bravely Second, Square Enix’s highlight anticipated sequel to Bravely Default, released last week in Japan, and the consumer reviews on Amazon Japan seem to indicate mixed feelings about the game.
Bravely Second is currently sitting at a 3-star rating (out of 5 stars,) which isn’t a bad score, but for the sake of comparison, other popular RPGs such as Bravely Default, Xenoblade Chronicles 3D, and Fire Emblem: Awakening are all sitting at 4 stars each. That having been said, as always, remember to take the following information with a grain of salt, as it comes from a wide variety of players with different perspectives.
“Battles, leveling up… and then more battles. That’s what makes this game fun, and I also had fun with the increased number of jobs and how it has widened the way you fight,” wrote one reviewer, who was rated the most popular among the positive reviews. “Again, by using the Consecutive Chance feature I was able to make decent profit at an early stage, and it made job leveling smoother, so that was nice.”
He goes onto mention that the composer has changed from Revo to ryo, and while he’s not a big fan of either of the two musicians, he had no complaints about the switch. As far as story goes, the reviewer states that he was pleased to see that not much has changed from the first game, and that Bravely Second has its dark moments like Bravely Default, with a cast that looks forward and never gives up in the face of adversity.
Another reviewer gave Bravely Second 5 stars for its battle system and the challenge behind the game, along with the fun that comes with combining all the different jobs and abilities together. However, he also had a few minor criticisms to share.
“On the other hand, the story, new characters, and music didn’t draw me in like the previous game (maybe I just got used to the first game). The new characters have a different feel to them, and it seems like there are many on the more serious side,” he wrote. “The music isn’t too memorable, and I don’t find myself humming the songs like I did in the first game.”
Moving on, one of the main complaints that many of the critical reviews have seem to be about the dialogue in Bravely Second. We previously reported that Bravely Second has new writers that handled the story, and it seems that this has led to some changes compared to the first game. The main complaint is about how there’s frequent use of Internet lingo, slang, and references to anime.
“There are plenty of frivolous conversations that are something like a parody that you’d see from NicoNico or 2chan,” one reviewer said about Bravely Second’s dialogue.
Another reviewer stated: “As a fan of the first game, yeah, there was a little discomfort early on. I thought to myself: ‘what is this, Neptunia?’ But after playing it and getting further, I didn’t mind such trivial matters. Most of the parody bits that [other reviewers] have been pointing out are mostly in the tutorials, and I don’t think it’s anything worth being that upset about; however, I could see it being a shock to fans of the first game, as they may view it as the worldview and mood being ruined.”
A third player stated: “I, too, felt that there was an unnecessary degree of meme parodies and slang. The first game also had a little bit of this, but I felt that this game has an unnecessary amount of it. In the end, I don’t think it’s so bad that it takes away from the game’s worth, though.”
Opinions regarding music, dialogue, story, and characters seem to vary from good to bad, but one thing just about everyone was able to agree on, is about the Square Enix Members issue.
“Register on the member’s site? What the heck is that about?” wrote a critical reviewer. “Just when I thought I could sit there and enjoy the game, it said that it was required to register on Square Enix’s Members website. This was probably the biggest instance of an unpleasant feeling I got from the game.”
This reviewer goes on to list a few things in the game that require a Square Enix Members account registered to the game. The first one, which bothered him the most, was the new version of Norende Village’s restoration, which is on the moon in Bravely Second. Unlike in Bravely Default, where you could go online to gather villagers to help out, you’ll need to register the Square Enix Members site before being able to do so in Bravely Second.
Some of the other things that also require the Members site are first-print bonus items, additional quests, and additional costumes. In other words, if you want any extra bonuses, the game kind of forces you into registering, which was never the case in Bravely Default.
While most of the complaints aren’t exactly about major problems, there do seem to be a bunch of minor nuisances that made some players feel like they took away from Bravely Second’s enjoyment. Overall, however, the game has still been received well, and it sold 100,000 copies in its first week. If word-of-mouth remains strong, it could go on to sell well in the months to come.