Octopath Traveler II Review: A Retro Throwback And Modern Innovation

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Written By Antoine Clerc-Renaud

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Octopath Traveler II is a highly anticipated sequel that has garnered attention from both fans of the original game and newcomers to the series. With improvements made to the gameplay mechanics, story and character development, and open world exploration, Octopath Traveler II offers a better experience for players who may have struggled with the first installment.

This retro throwback and modern innovation retains the core elements that made the original game so beloved, while also introducing new features that make it more approachable.

The combat system in Octopath Traveler II is particularly fun, combining elements from other Square Enix games to create a unique experience. The game’s writing is also strong, exploring the darker aspects of humanity without oversimplifying them. Overall, Octopath Traveler II is a game that combines nostalgia with modern innovation, offering a fresh take on the classic JRPG genre.

This article will explore the various improvements made to the game, including its gameplay mechanics, story and character development, and open world exploration, all while maintaining an objective and analytical tone.

Gameplay Improvements

The review notes that Octopath Traveler II improves upon the gameplay of its predecessor, with adjustments and tweaks that make it more approachable for players who struggled with the original game’s mechanics.

One of the major improvements is the pacing, which has been streamlined to reduce the amount of grinding required to progress through the game. The level gating system, which requires players to reach certain levels before they can access certain areas, has been adjusted to be less punishing, and the encounter rate has been reduced to prevent players from being overwhelmed by constant battles.

In addition to the improved pacing, the game’s mechanics have also been streamlined to make them more intuitive and easier to understand.

The path actions, which allow players to interact with NPCs and the environment, have been simplified to four main approaches: acquiring items, learning about a person, recruiting them, or knocking them unconscious.

The combat system has also been refined, with the addition of a mechanic inspired by the Bravely Default games that allows players to stock up actions and use them in quick succession for stronger attacks.

Overall, these improvements have made Octopath Traveler II a more enjoyable and accessible experience for both new and returning players.

Story and Character Development

Character development in the game is highlighted by the fact that there are over 80 hours of unique story content, with each of the eight protagonists having their own distinct storyline and personality. The game delves deep into the inner conflicts of each character, exploring their motivations, growth and development, and the impact of player choices on their stories. The game’s narrative is full of twists and turns, keeping players engaged and invested in the characters’ journeys.

The game also places a strong emphasis on character relationships, with each pair of protagonists having an ongoing side story that adds to the overall thematic depth and complexity of the game. The writing is well-crafted and the characters are multi-dimensional, with their flaws and strengths making them more relatable and human.

Overall, the character development in Octopath Traveler II is one of its strongest aspects, making the game a must-play for fans of RPGs that value a strong narrative and character-driven storytelling.

Open World Exploration

Open world exploration in Octopath Traveler II is a key aspect that offers players a vast and immersive world to discover and explore. The game’s world building details are impressive, with each region and town having its own unique culture, architecture, and inhabitants. The game’s open world is divided into several regions, each with its own distinct environment, ranging from lush forests and snowy mountains to deserts and sprawling cities.

Exploration mechanics in the game are well-designed, with various paths and hidden areas to discover that reward players with valuable items, equipment, and side quests. The game encourages players to revisit previously explored areas to uncover new secrets and progress through character side stories.

The game also features a fast travel system that allows players to quickly move between unlocked locations, making exploration more convenient and streamlined.

Overall, the open world exploration in Octopath Traveler II is a well-executed aspect of the game that adds depth and immersion to the player experience.

Combat System

The combat system in Octopath Traveler II is a standout feature that has been improved from the original game. It utilizes a combination of mechanics that rewards strategic planning and engagement with the gameplay.

The Bravely Default inspiration is evident in the game’s mechanic that lets players stock up actions and use them in quick succession to score more hits or stronger special attacks. This adds an extra layer of depth to combat and encourages players to think ahead and plan their moves carefully.

In addition, the game’s enemy break system is another key component of the combat system. It asks players to seek out and exploit enemy weaknesses in order to break their defenses and deal more damage. This encourages players to experiment with different strategies and party compositions, as well as pay attention to enemy patterns and behaviors.

Overall, the combat system in Octopath Traveler II is a satisfying and challenging experience that rewards players for their strategic thinking and engagement with the game’s mechanics.

Platform Availability

Octopath Traveler II is available on multiple gaming platforms, including Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, and PC. Players can enjoy the game’s vast open world, engaging combat system, and diverse aesthetics on their preferred platform.

However, the question remains, which platform offers the best experience for Octopath Traveler II?

The Nintendo Switch version of the game is the original platform and has been optimized for the console’s unique features. It offers the option to play in handheld mode, which enhances the game’s retro throwback feel, and the Joy-Con’s motion controls can be used for some actions.

On the other hand, the PC version offers higher resolution graphics, faster load times, and the potential for mods and customizations. Moreover, players can use a controller or keyboard and mouse to play the game.

Cross-platform play is not possible for Octopath Traveler II, meaning players cannot play with friends on different platforms. However, the game does offer cross-save functionality, allowing players to transfer their progress between platforms.

Ultimately, the choice of platform depends on the player’s preferences and priorities.

Octopath Traveler II: Octopath Traveler II is a highly anticipated sequel that has garnered attention from both fans of the original game and newcomers to the series. With improvements made to the gameplay mechanics, story and character development, and open world exploration, Octopath Traveler II offers a better experience for players who may have struggled with the first installment. ACR

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von 10
2023-06-16T17:41:53-0400

Frequently Asked Questions

How does Octopath Traveler II improve upon the original game’s formula and make it more approachable for new players?

Octopath Traveler II improves upon the original game‘s formula by implementing improved accessibility and streamlined progression. The game is designed to be more approachable for new players without sacrificing the depth and complexity that made the original game so compelling.

The path actions have been simplified to four approaches, making it easier for players to understand and utilize them. The lack of interaction between playable characters in the original game has been addressed by pairing off each of the eight protagonists with another and giving each pair an ongoing side story.

The encounter rate is high, but each character’s stories and field maps have a recommended level, preventing players from getting overwhelmed. Despite the level gating, the combat system is fun and utilizes a mechanic inspired by the Bravely Default games, allowing players to stock up actions and use them in quick succession to score more hits or stronger special attacks.

Overall, Octopath Traveler II improves upon the original game’s formula by making it more accessible, streamlined, and enjoyable for both new and returning players.

Does the game’s level gating and lack of passive EXP share lead to any frustrating grinding sessions?

The level gating system in Octopath Traveler II can be frustrating at times, as each character’s story and field map has a recommended level that must be met before progressing. This can lead to grinding sessions if players have not been frequently rotating their party members.

Additionally, the lack of passive exp share for characters not in the active party can make solo progression difficult, forcing players to switch out characters frequently to ensure they are all at an appropriate level.

While these mechanics can be frustrating, they also add a layer of strategy to the gameplay and encourage players to explore different party compositions.

How does the game’s combat system utilize mechanics from other Square Enix games, and how does it compare to the original Octopath Traveler?

The combat system in Octopath Traveler II utilizes mechanics from other Square Enix games, such as the Bravely Default series, and improves upon the original game’s system.

The mechanic of storing up actions and using them in quick succession to score more hits or stronger special attacks adds depth to the gameplay.

Additionally, the enemy break system encourages players to seek out and exploit weaknesses.

The in-depth job system also adds to the strategic elements of combat.

Overall, the combat system is a significant improvement from the original game, providing a fun and engaging experience for players.

How does the game handle its eight individual characters and storylines, and is there a unified goal for the player to work towards?

In Octopath Traveler II, the game handles its eight individual characters and storylines by providing a unique character progression system and branching paths for each character.

The player can choose to play through each character’s story in any order they desire, with each storyline offering a unique perspective on the world and its inhabitants.

There is no unified goal for the player to work towards, as the game is designed to be open-ended and allow for player freedom. However, each character’s story does contribute to the overall understanding of the game’s world and lore, making it worthwhile to explore all eight storylines.

The game’s emphasis on character development and individual storylines helps to create a more immersive world, and the branching paths allow for a more personalized gameplay experience.

When it comes to Octopath Traveler II, there are some significant differences between the game’s versions on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, and PC.

While the game is available on all four platforms, the Switch version is in a much better state and offers one of the favorite open worlds explored in a game.

However, the PlayStation 5 version provides the best graphics with its higher resolution and frame rate, making it the recommended platform for players who prioritize graphics.

On the other hand, the PlayStation 4 and PC versions offer a more stable performance and faster load times.

Ultimately, the recommended platform for playing Octopath Traveler II depends on the player’s priorities, whether it’s graphics, performance, or open world exploration.

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