Friday, December 21, 2012

Alphadia 2 [Kemco & EXE Create] - $6.99

Well, it’s time once again; Kemco has released yet another top-of-the-pack Turn-Based RPG in the AppStore. Fans of Kemco know that just about every RPG that this studio has published carries with it some fantastic old-school gameplay, rivaled only by a few select developers, and able to hold their own up against the monster that is Final Fantasy. So, what has Kemco brought to the table this time around? How about a sequel to one of their previous games, the EXE-Create developed title; Alphadia 2. 

Alphadia 2, as you surely must have expected, jumps into the world of the original Alphadia, only 200 years after the events in the original. If you’re familiar with the original, you will be running into some familiar faces, as some of the characters from the original were designed clones, they are still around 200 years later. The Schwarzschild Empire is also still playing a roll and the Lightning Guild an even bigger one, and Energi is still a force that drives battles, assassination plots and wars. 
This time around, you’ll be following the story of Leon, a young Energi Guild member, Milfy, a researcher for The Guild who’s also connected to Leon’s past, Enah, who’s from the first Alphadia title, and Guildmistress along with others who will join your party along the way. 

All available members of your unit will always follow along with you, but you are only able to have a party of 4 enter battles. However, since other members follow along, you’re also able to switch out members for others if you so desire. Alphadia 2’s customization is almost exactly like the originals. Each of your characters will have a main element in which they’re proficient in, but you’re also able to level up other elements by equipping your characters with rings which you’re able to attach elements to. Once you equip your character with an elemental ring, they will start learning skills based in that element. Aside from that, Weapons and Armor are the only other items that you’ll have control over, and stats are increased on their own by leveling up your characters. 

If you remember playing through the original Alphadia, one of things that probably stuck out above everything else was the amount of battles you encountered. Thankfully, the grind has been lowered in the sequel, and progression through the story flows a lot quicker because of this. Also, leveling up of characters and skills has also been tweaked so that you’re not required to enter as many battles as you were in the original in order to gain skills and become stronger. However, gaining of currency is something that you might find yourself needing to grind for if you’re interested in always having the strongest gear, though this is by no means necessary in order to play through the game. 

Graphically, Alphadia 2 follows the same look as the original, but adds a bit of polish on top of it. It still retains it’s retro feeling throughout, and environments are again maze-like in structure. Though, as mentioned, with the number of random battles that you’ll be thrown into, getting through buildings, castles and dungeons is done at a much quicker pace. 
The menus are fairly different than the original’s, with more polish and easier navigation. The battles are also easier to get through since you’re able to use the d-pad and action button to select actions instead of having to reach up into the screen to tap on the action you want to perform. Along with the Auto battle option, Alphadia 2’s user interface has been restructured to allow for quicker and easier selection throughout the game, which is a great inclusion, and pretty much takes care of what you would expect a sequel to take care of.

Like all other Kemco titles, the translation is near perfect, with only minor grammatical errors here and there, allowing for players to fully understand the story and plot. This also helps players to become fully immersed in the story and characters, who, like previous titles, will grow on you fairly quickly. 
With Alphadia 2 launching at a special price of $2.99 instead of it’s original $6.99, it’s a great RPG to pick up for fans of the genre. If you’ve yet to be exposed to Kemco, Alphadia 2 would be a great jumping off point, and one that you don’t need to know the ins and outs of the previous Alphadia in order to fully enjoy. The only negative thing I can say about Alphadia 2 is that the game is not Universal, which means that iPad owners will have to play in 2X, but with the iPad 3 and 4’s ability to smooth out the graphics of 2X gameplay, this is becoming less and less of an issue. Alphadia 2 is optimized for the widescreen of the iPhone/iPod 5 as well. Kemco has proven, once again, that they are capable of being named along with Square Enix , Quest, Beam and others in the old-school RPG category. 


I'm running out of time to play all these games!

Ha... Thanks! And a happy new year to you too! Hope you had a great Christmas...


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