Arc the Lad II
|Arc the Lad II|
|Developer(s)||Sony Computer Entertainment, Arc Entertainment|
|Series||Arc the Lad|
|Release||Arc the Lad II|
Arc the Lad Collection
|Genre(s)||Tactical role-playing game|
Arc the Lad II is a tactical role-playing video game developed by ARC Entertainment for the PlayStation and is the second game in the Arc the Lad series. It was released in 1996 in Japan, and released in North America on April 18, 2002, as part of Arc the Lad Collection. The Japanese version was published by Sony Computer Entertainment, while the North American release was published by Working Designs.
The story continues from the first game, although the focus shifts from Arc to Elc. It expands from the gameplay of the first installment, with a larger world and a more diverse cast. An anime was made based on this game.
Unlike the original game, the countries of the world can be viewed in detail on a bird's eye scale. Most travel is initially restricted to the game's plot, but players eventually gain global access by airship, either by the Hein or the Silver Noah. Players are no longer under restricted turn-based movement while going through dungeon/field areas. The battles vary from random encounters to automatic entries to a section.
Just as in the first game, the characters do battle against monsters and enemies in strategy-based combat. However, rather than fighting with every party member in each battle, the player now has to select between 1 and 6 characters per battle, depending on the battle's requirements. The player can recruit monsters into the party with the option of upgrading them and other characters at a later time.
In most cities in Arc the Lad II, there are hunter guilds where the player can take on local jobs. These jobs include fetch quests, monster hunting and deliveries. Most jobs include a degree of battle. Also in the guilds are bulletins about rare marked monsters that can be found in certain dungeon/field areas. Some jobs only become available after completing related jobs or certain plot points.
Critics cited Arc the Lad II as the best of the original trilogy. David Smith of IGN praised the game's expansion over the first game, writing that "Arc II grafts a bigger world map, more detailed dungeons, more complex character development, a far larger cast, and most of all a longer quest onto a combat system that remains pretty familiar." Alex Makar of Gaming Age noted that the addition of the Hunter's Guild to the gameplay added an element of nonlinearity, allowing the player to complete many side-quests (or "jobs") and giving "the player a lot of flexibility in how they want to progress through the storyline." He also commented on the cast, saying that the characters were more likeable and had more personality, and that the "story is also a lot darker than it is in Arc 1, and has some pretty angst and melancholy ridden overtones."
Smith's major complaint with the game was its graphical representation, saying that the game looks almost identical to the first game. In contrast, Bethany Massimilla of Cnet.com called the character sprites "more vibrantly colored and better detailed", although she admitted that the "dungeons remain largely monotonous".
- Smith, David (2002). "Arc the Lad Collection review". IGN. Retrieved 2009-12-16.
- "Arc the Lad II for PlayStation". GameRankings. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 2018-07-17.
- Makar, Alex (2002). "Arc the Lad Collection". Gaming Age. Archived from the original on 2008-04-06. Retrieved 2012-01-01.
- Massimilla, Bethany (2004). "Arc the Lad Collection (PlayStation)". Cnet.com. Retrieved 2009-12-16.