This game obviously takes “inspiration” on many of Capcom’s Monster Hunter formulas, but the guys from Shift were smart enough to know that a mere imitation would never beat the original, so they did many things differently and also added a lot of new elements you can’t find on any “Monhun”.Thus, God Eater was born. Ditching the medieval setting to adopt a post-apocalyptic scenario. It also had something very uncommon to the regular Hunting game, a very well-written plot with charismatic characters! Those choices were spot on and the game was a success!
3 years have passed since the first game (both in the game’s plot and in real life). Earth still resisting the mysterious creatures know as Aragami. The plot focus on a new unit known as Blood working on the giant tank-city Friar, where Dr. Rachel study the recently discovered “Blood Arts”, a special ability only found on God Eaters with strong will power. Rachel also promises that her research will lead into solutions to many problems faced by humanity, specially the recent menace of the mysterious “red rain”, which is believed to be the cause of a black plague.
Just like the first game, you create your own avatar to play the main character. This is not the same protagonist from the first God Eater. This time you play the role of a new recruit in the Blood unit. He had an abnormal reaction during the installation of his God Ark, which drew the attention of Dr. Rachel, as something very similar happened with Julius – the current leader of the unit. Later on, the protagonist awakens his own blood ability, which help develop other members’ abilities. Thanks to this new power, the main character proves to be a fundamental piece on this battle.This time around, you truly feel like your character is the protagonist, different from the first game, where Soma was the focus of nearly every main event. In this game, you can even choose dialog options to make your avatar more comunicative, even though it rarely changes anything in the event. The awesome graphics also help a lot, since it makes your character very expressive! Julius Visconti is the brave leader of the Blood unit. He has a pure heart and is very good at making friends. He treats everyone with respect and think of his unit as his own family, which is why he is willing to sacrifice anything for them.Nana Kazuki is a very innocent girl with the mind of a child. This is related to a terrible incident with her mother when she was little. Since she showed great potential to become a God Eater, she was adopted by Dr. Rachel and was trained during years to strengthen her body and overcome her trauma. She enters in the unit at the same time as the protagonist and the two become best friends.Romeo Leoni is already a veteran God Eater working for the Blood unit for some time. However, he is not very competent as a God Eater and tends to slow down the team. He still didn’t show any kind of blood ability and the newest members easily surpass him. This creates a strong inferiority complex on him.Gilbert McLane (insert Bruce Willis joke here) is transferred from many other units to the Blood unit since he had trouble dealing with other people. This is related to a big loss he had some years ago. But thanks to mysteriously finding himself feeling comfortable around the main character, the two become good friends.Ciel Alencon was raised to be a God Eater since a very young age, which made her suffer from “Sagara’s complex”, meaning she is totally clueless with anything not battle-related. However, when the protagonist saves her life during a hopeless situation, she learns that there are things beyond the army orders, by becoming friends with the main character, she awakes to her humanity.When you first land your eyes on Rachel Claudius, you know she is dangerous! Her words are almost entirely nonsense and she talks in a very creepy way. Just to make things even clearer, she is always wearing black clothes, like she is constantly mourning over someone…or something.Well, there are just too many characters to be introduced here, but the whole group is awesome! I didn’t find any character to hate here! Everyone has their strengths and roles in the story. I hope to find more characters like these on the next games I will play!
While many of the controls and mechanics still intact from the first game, there are many new elements that can take the whole playthrough to be fully explored. What I mean is that this game is deep! Even though I already finished it, there are a lot of things I didn’t even hear about. Bullet customization is already complicated as it is, but things get even more complex with the implementation of the Blood Bullets. There is now a way to create a reserve gauge to your bullets and boosters. There are new types of God Arks, like Spears, Hammers and Shotguns. Anyway, there is a lot to do and to try, which solves the difficulty problem from the first game, since now you have many ways to become stronger. However, the most interesting method to get the advantage during battles is to make your allies stronger, because it introduces a whole new system called character episodes, where you see events and receive special missions related to a specific ally, if everything goes right, not only will you acquire new abilities to your partners, but will also know more about those characters background! It’s something very similar to the “Social Link” system from the Persona series, and I love those!
Flight Unit! I love you! They were not only responsible for the 3D models creation, but they also animated the whole thing, and those guys made an impressive job! Everything moves so smoothly, the months are part of the 3D models! Who usually plays Japanese games, should know how this is rare these days! The lip-synch is nearly perfect, aside from some rare lags here and there. Many parts of the characters move independently, like clothes and hair. The textures are very clean and detailed, the colors are vivid and the designs are as interesting and unique as ever. To make things even better, everything runs at a very high frame rate! This is certainly the most beautiful graphics I’ve ever seen in a portable game!
While many tracks make a return from the first title, there are many new ones as well, some even have vocals. Everything combines to form a spectacular soundtrack! Like the music from the last game, there is a big variety in styles and genres, but it seems there is always mysticism as a recurring theme behind most of the tracks.The voice-acting is great! Since the characters from the first game also join the team, their respective seiyuu also reprise their roles, which means there is a cast of all-stars working to dub this game. It’s very difficult to find someone who is not voiced by an extremely famous person!
An interesting and debatable thing is how the title of the first game was changed during it’s U.S. localization, becoming GodS Eater. It was so sudden that the whole voice-over was already recorded without that weird plural. I don’t even know if this is grammatically correct! The reasons for this change is, presumably, to not offend those of the Christian faith. It is unknown if this sequel will also make the trip to the states, but it’s possible that the same change will happen to the title.Other weird change was about the military involvement in the plot, where nearly every notion about the army was removed from the game’s script, resulting on terms like “Captain” becoming “Leader” and “Commander” becoming “Chief”. This was most likely because of how young some of the characters were. This didn’t cause much of an impact in the game, since the characters used only casual clothes and didn’t really act as soldiers. However, in this sequel, the members of the Blood unit have military uniforms and have to behave more seriously around their superiors. I wonder how this would be treated in a localization.
This is, undoubtedly, my pic for this year’s best game, and I don’t even like this genre! Everything is so perfect! I certainly could switch to “Asshole mode” and do some nitpicking, but sincerely, this game deserves a better treatment! I hope this doesn’t take too long to reach the States, so more people could play this master piece.