Retro art style with the use of pixelated graphics, anti-hero protagonist, dirt digging, parodies of other videogames or animes, addictive gameplay… it was hard not to love the original Yuusha no Kuse ni Namaikida when it first came out late last year. Can the sequel, Yuusha no Kuse ni Namaikida or 2 (or2), stay fresh and provide enough content to warrant a purchase? The short answer is a resounding YES.
A little introduction for those unfamiliar with the series, of which its title I will translate as “Heroes don’t be arrogant”. The goal of the game is simple, you are the “God of Destruction” who must keep the “Evil King” from being abducted by those cocky RPG heroes. You will be given a pickax to dig dirts, uncover the creatures within, use them to fight off the heroes and breed stronger creatures. However, it’s definitely tougher than it sounds as there are tonnes of things to keep track of during the game but that’s where the fun really begins.
Or2 adds plenty of content based on the original games. While we only have few stages to dig on previously, it takes more than 30 stages across 8 different areas to complete the story mode this time. However, it’s still a perfect pick and play game in that it doesn’t takes long to clear an area or if you struggle to do so, retry is only four clicks away.
More stages mean an increase in the number of heroes too. They look extremely likable in the pixel arts and rank from absolute powerless to annoyingly strong, especially in the later areas. The heroes have different attack and magics too, some of them now know how to make save points, drop foods for use later or set up bombs, all these could make for a really frustrating experience sometimes but one that you’ll alway say “one more time” again and again. One complaint about this is it can be hard to keep track of their whereabouts, health or actions, especially when there are more than three of them in your dungeon, a clearer display or shortcut that can focus on them will be helpful.
Another reasons for the addictiveness is you always feel like you found a better strategy for your next retry and before you know it, three hours were spent trying to kill a hero that moves like bullets. Strategy is certainly at the heart of the game, there are probably dozens of ways to clear a stage and then there are elements of luck which lets you start the game with either tonnes of nutrient-saturated dirts or nothing but pure clean dirts. This, plus a reward system that grades you based on the time taken or digging made make sure that the game has plenty of replay value.
Another new feature that affect the gameplay in many ways is Mutation, which depends on your luck and skills, can makes the game either easier or harder. Creatures will now mutate in order to adapt to situations like extinction to their types, lack of food or under heavy attacks. I can imagine players purposely force a mutation to create a stronger type of army. This also eliminates some of the balance issues that first game had, where you can pretty much just mass produce a creature, keep them in a narrow “room” and most heroes simply can’t make it out alive.
Besides the Story Mode, there is Tutorial, which also include challenges like create a certain number of a creature in a set amount of time that can really test your skills. The third mode is “The Evil King’s Room”, a fans requested mode where you can just concentrate on creatures breeding without having to worry about the heroes invasion.
Graphics wise, besides the new creatures and heroes, the game looks exactly the same as the previous game, which probably is not to the taste of everyone but is still great looking and fit perfectly with the game’s mechanics for those who like it. Also worth mentioning the gorgeous Lego blocks style world map. There are some really nice new background musics to the game as well besides the absolutely spot on sound effects, which makes me really interested in the soundtrack now. Non Japanese speaker will certainly missed the jokes and parodies but the game is generally import friendly (check out the menu guide here).
Yuusha no Kuse ni Namaikida or 2 certainly makes the first game looks bare bones, the balance tweaks and new addition are enough for returning players to be evil again if you don’t hate it first time round. New players might find this a little daunting at first because the dungeon gets really busy very soon and it can be really frustrating if you are not used to the ecosystem in the dungeon and do not take advantage of the way creatures move. But it’s a very satisfying experience if you are willing to spend more time with it. PSPHyper gives Yuusha no Kuse ni Namaikida or 2 a devilishly addictive 4.5 out of 5.
Yuusha no Kuse ni Namaikida or 2 is available at Play-Asia for $36.90 (Asia version, contain brief English/Chinese manual)