Magna Carta 2: An Anime Cliche If Ever There Was One

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Like most things in life, there are leaders and there are followers and the gaming industry is no exception. There are games that try to push the genre forward (or aspects of the genre at least).  Then there are games that lazily follow behind. It’s not that these game are horrible, far from it in fact. If this game came out years ago it would have probably gotten a great reception. Sadly MagnaCarta2 came out in 2009 and it just doesn’t measure up.

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token spikey-haired warrior...(check)

First off Magna Carta 2 is actually the third installment.  The first was a PC game in 2001, then came the 2005 Magna Carta: Tears of Blood For the PS2. The installment of the series follows a story set in the war-torn Lanzheim Continent and centers around a male character named Juto, who cannot remember his past (Like that’s never happened before… maybe his name should be Cloud and not Juto).

Leviathan 03

What anime game would be complete withough mech-like monsters to fight?

The game play mixes strategic turn-based and real-time elements and the player controls up to three party members. When you encounter an enemy the player has the option of switching from Movement Mode to Combat Mode and there is no loading screen when entering a fight (which is nice).  During a fight, players can switch control of party members and customize AI for those the player is not controlling.

You usual flame fighter

You usual flame throwing warrior...

As I said, years ago this game might have been refreshing because, as you may remember, both the Xbox and the 360 had a severe lack in RPGs especially Japanese RPGs.  But since then we’ve had games like Mass Effect, Fallout 3, Fable 2;  even Japanese RPG’s like Tales of Vesperia and Eternal Sonata.  Each brought something refreshing to the genre or the system.  So now the bar has been raised pretty high and pretty graphics just don’t cut it anymore.  Once you take that away it’s really hard for a game like Magna Carta  2 to compete.

Pros

The graphics and sound, while nothing to write home about, still live up to the standard one would expect for a “this” gen system.  Other than that there isn’t much to write home about this game. Character designs are pretty anime-influenced so if you like that kinda thing this may get some extra points from you.

Igton in the battle 03

The battle system has the interesting element of having to chain through your characters during battle so that you don’t run out of stamina. This keeps the game from being a button masher and forces you to make use of everyone.  Each character has two styles of attack. It’s a system that this game swagger jacked from Star Ocean (surprise). The weapons also have an enhancement system that works like…you guessed it, Materia (surprise again ).  But hey, if your going to take ideas from games you might as well go with ideas that worked right?

Cons

Though the graphics are nice, can we get some original designs please?! This game is not a JRPG. It was created by a Korean game company. But everything about the visuals just screams mediocre fantasy based anime. The amnesia hero, the country swept up in war, the sassy princess, the spikey haired teammates, all of these just make the clichés too many to count.

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Then there are the seemingly endless pages of text!  As I said years ago this wouldn’t have mattered so much. However, pesky developers like Bioware and others who insist on recording all dialogue for a more immersive experience, make games with this massive amount of text in this game feel like crime against gaming!

Here’s the Deal

Here is the deal: As far as games go…this is a Frankenstein …or rather a Godzilla of JRPG clichés. It’s not a total horror flick but the fact that it’s so boringly mediocre makes it in fact worse than a REALLY bad game.  RPG’s as a genre are constantly evolving. New systems of fighting, original stories, fresh and dimensional characters,  games that don’t try to improve on what’s come before will no doubt fall by the way side.  Magna Carta 2 recently released but because of lack of originality, it won’t be long before people will be saying Magna Carta who?

6/10

Nigel H.

~ by consolecreatures on November 14, 2009.

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