Announced at PSX in December 2015, Ni no Kuni fans have been awaiting the sequel for over 2 years. A follow-up to 2013's Wrath of the White Witch, Revenant Kingdom aims to take the series in a decidedly different direction, while retaining the charm, beauty, and heart of the original.
March 23rd, 2018 on PS4 and PC (Steam)
PS4 Pro Enhancements, PC System Requirements?:
Ni no Kuni II will support Dynamic 4K/60 FPS with HDR on PS4 Pro. (source)
PC System Requirements
There is a season pass for Ni no Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom although the details of it are quite sparse at the moment. Priced at $20, it is said to include "two unspecified "large" DLC drops down the line, and extra items." The game page on the PSN store says that the DLC are expansions that "add hours of additional gameplay." The Season Pass is included with the Collector's and Digital Deluxe (aka Prince on Steam) editions. (source)
Set some time after the events of the original Ni no Kuni, we find ourselves in control of Evan, the would-be boy king of Ding Dong Dell. Events are quickly set in motion that find Evan without a kingdom, mourning the loss of a loved one and determined to establish a kingdom of his own once again where everyone can live "happily ever after."
To guide him and help him in this endeavor is Roland, a newly arrived visitor to Ni No Kuni from our world. Luckily for Evan, Roland just so happens to be a President!
Evan and Roland encounter other friends throughout their journey, leading to a unique cast of characters to accompany them on this 30-40 hour adventure. The review embargo lifted yesterday and Ni no Kuni II boasts a solid 86 cumulative score after 44 reviews.
Here is a sampling of those reviews:
Easy Allies: 95 - "Some may argue Revenant Kingdom clocks in a bit on the short side at around 30 hours to finish the story, but it's a nice departure from the trend of top-rated JRPG's that last 60 hours or beyond. Ni no Kuni II is a brilliant follow-up that outdoes and improves upon its predecessor in just about every category. This is one fairy tale that most certainly earns its happily ever after."
Playstation Universe: 95 - "Ni no Kuni 2 is pure greatness. Everything it does it does at the highest level. RPG fans owe it to themselves to experience this gem. Easily one of the best games of this generation."
GamesRadar: 90 - "Ni no Kuni II is the RPG adventure that's like shooting sunshine right into your veins. So clear your calendar, because Level-5 is about to fill it with monsters, magic and city management."
Game Informer: 80 - "Building your kingdom is satisfying and engaging, even with the weak narrative hooks. The cycle of rewards became an obsession, and had me staying up late to recruit just one more ally, or complete just one more upgrade. Combat could be tighter, and other supporting elements could use some polish - but like any kingdom, this experience isn't about individual contributions. It's about how those contributions come together, and the fun of this experience as a whole outweighs its flaws."
IGN: 78 - "Ni no Kuni 2 distinguishes itself from its predecessor by layering fast-paced, real-time combat and an engaging kingdom building system atop more traditional RPG systems and quests. It's a shame it delivers so few truly memorable character and restricts so much of its storytelling to text on screen, but by the end of Ni no Kuni 2 the broader themes certainly resonate and the 40+ hour journey has been well worth it."
Level-5 dramatically changed the combat from the Pokemon-inspired Familiar system used in the original in favor of a real-time combat system usually found in an action RPG. In Revenant Kingdom, you do NOT gotta catch them all! The video below summarizes the key aspects of it nicely.
One of Evan's main drives is to build a kingdom of his own, welcoming to all. This is the basis of the kingdom building mechanic in Revenant Kingdom. As you progress through your journey, you are encouraged to build up your kingdom in order to beef up your army of Higgledies, upgrade weapons and armor of party members (aside from equipment you can buy/find in the world and other towns) and a number of other things. Kotaku has a nice video showing some gameplay of this mode.
Perhaps one of Revenant Kingdoms most controversial modes is Skirmish Mode. Reviewers seemed to either hate it or "not mind it" based on the reviews I read. Essentially, you lead hordes of minions to combat enemy hordes, raze enemy structures and overtake new lands. Skirmish mode does not feel like a mandatory task to complete as they are presented to you throughout your journey, until they do become mandatory at one point in order to progress. One reviewer had been skipping them and didn't like the small grind he had to do since his armies were under-leveled for the task at that point. So my best advice would be to not neglect these missions as they are given to you. Here is a video that outlines some of the key points of Skirmishing.
Well that about covers everything I know about the game so far. I'm very eager to dive into this world once again on Friday. 2013's Wrath of the White Witch was one of my favorite games of last gen and one of my favorite JRPG's ever. I'm optimistic that Level-5 can repeat the magic.
Courtesy of Colonel Mustard from ResetEra
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