Romancing Saga 2 (ロマンシング サ・ガ2?) is the fifth game in the SaGa series, released originally in 1993 in Japan for the Super Famicom. Like the previous SaGa trilogy, the only storyline connection between the three is the presence of "The Bard" (AKA: Haolahn, mascot of the entire trilogy).
An i-mode (exclusive to Japan) version of the game was released on November 1, 2011.
A re-release (Japan exclusive) was released on the Wii's Virtual Console on March 23, 2010 with items from other SaGa games in addition to two new classes: Ninja and Diviner. A new battle formation and a bonus dungeon which can be bought as DLC with four variants was also made available.
A remake for iOS, Android, and PS Vita was released in Japan on March 24, 2016. On April 28, 2016, Square Enix confirmed that it would be released in North America with a trailer and a website. On May 19, 2016, the release date for the iOS and Android version was revealed, May 26th, 2016, priced at $17.99. The PS Vita English version was announced on Twitter by the series creator Akitoshi Kawazu. This marks the official debut of Romancing SaGa 2 overseas. The Windows, Nintendo Switch, Playstation 4, and Xbox One versions released worldwide on December 15, 2017.
In Romancing SaGa 2, the player plays as the Emperor or Empress of Varennes, a kindgom located in the northwest corner of the game's world. The player begins the game as King Leon and later plays as his various heirs down through the years. Leon hands his kingdom over to his son, Gerard. At the end of Gerard's reign and so on, the player is able to choose their own successor and pass on Gerard's abilities to them. At the end of each generation, the player will be given a choice of four heirs. Their identity is based on a combination of chance and anyone whom the player has assisted or allied within in a past generation.
The ultimate objective of the game is to defeat all Seven Heroes.
- "As demons from every dimension threatened to consume the land, Seven Heroes rose to banish the evils to whence they came.
Yet they vanished without a trace before they could revel in their victory.
Tales of the seven—Kzinssie, Subier, Dantarg, Noel, Bokhohn, Rocbouquet, and Wagnas—were told around the world, and many clung to the belief that they would reappear to bring order to the world. People raised their voice in prayer with each successive blight, seeking succor and salvation.
Peace eventually embrace the land without the intervention of the seven, and their story faded into faerie tales.
Nations rose and fell until only a select few remembered the Seven Heroes and their deeds of valor.
Yet eventually the peace was shattered and dusty tomes describing the Seven Heroes were unearthed. Though they did come as prophesized..."
- —The Legend of the Seven Heroes
- "Peace is but a distant tale in history.
Regimes lost control, and monsters run rampant in Varennes and in other lands.
As the world spirals into chaos, the Seven Heroes grace the lips of man.
An epic story that will span generations is about to begin."
- —Prelude to an Epic SaGa
The story begins in a tavern where a bard recites a poem telling the story of the ruler Leon and his sons, Victor and Gerard.
Leon and Gerard dispatch monsters in the sealed cave, effectively eliminating their presence from the cavern itself. The duo arrive back in Avalon and are greeted by Victor, Leon's oldest son and Gerard's brother. As Leon readies himself on his throne, he is approached by a seer. Gerard exits the room and roams about the town until he approaches his father in the throne room. The king talks about the seer's ramblings and tells Victor to look after Avalon as he and Gerard go off to dispatch more monsters.
After conquering the Watchman's Den, the duo come back to a razed Avalon, seeing a dying Victor repeatedly proclaiming that his Flowing Slash failed to work. The king is told of the events surrounding Victor's death, that of Kzinssie eliminating his son with the soulsteal technique. Following the king's return to his throne, he is briefed on the situation and how Kzinssie from Somon was responsible. He commands a soldier to find Orieve the seer and bring her to his throne. As the soldier leaves to get the seer, the king proclaims his vengeance.
Orieve and the king have a mysterious conversation about inheriting power while a sullen Gerard grieves by his bed, still in awe of Victor's defeat. Leon walks into the room and tells Gerard they are to avenge Victor, with the latter proclaiming his agreement.
Arriving at Somon, Gerard and Leon dispatch the many obstacles blocking their path to Kzinssie. While fighting Kzinssie in battle, the demon uses Soulsteal on Leon, rendering him unable to battle. On his deathbed, Leon tells Gerard that the seer taught him how to use inheritance magic. Gerard figures out that Leon used himself to figure out a way to counter Soulsteal and that through inheritance magic, Gerard can defeat Kzinssie with that ability. In his final moments, Leon wonders about the legend of the seven heroes and how they must be eradicated if they are as vile as Kzinssie. Leon asks Gerard if he is up to the task of saving the world, with the former stating that he is willing. With his last breath, Leon bestows upon Gerard the ability to counter Soulsteal while Leon's own body vanishes. After being chosen as Leon's heir, Gerard is bathed in a radiant gold light, thus signalling the effect of the inheritance magic.
Gerard exits his father's room and is greeted by his father's soldiers, with the latter stating that goblins have began plundering Avalon. Gerard asks about the current situation while Hector, a former vassal of his father decides to spurn Gerard's request for assistance. Gerard decides to undergo the task of dispatching the goblins alongside those who wish to join him. After defeating the goblin horde that's descended upon Avalon, Gerard sits on the throne, accepting an apology from Hector who regrets assuming nothings about his current lord. Gerard is given the decision to either attack a nearby goblin outpost and secure Avalon's safety or to depart towards Somon and eliminate Kzinssie.
After eliminating the goblin king and routing all the enemies in the goblin outpost, Gerard heads straight for Somon to eliminate Kzinssie. As Gerard and his companions defeat the demon, Kzinssie mentions that he will bide his time and sleep. As Kzinssie perishes, Gerard is able to satisfy his vengeance but he wonders if Kzinssie will someday revive. Eliminating Kzinssie allows Avalon to retake Somon, allowing passage to the North and South Varennes.
One year later, Gerard sits on the throne wearing golden armor and discusses the current situation with an officer.
- See also: Beginner Tips
- Main article: Glimmer
The skill system in Romancing SaGa 2 was the first of the series to utilize a "glimmer" system. This system would become one of the cornerstones to how later games in the series would handle learning skills.
In this game, using a weapon gives you the random chance to glimmer a new skill in battle. The requirements can be somewhat stringent and counter-intuitive at times. However, not all characters can glimmer all skills. The list of skills available for glimmering to a particular character is dependent upon their glimmer type.
Characters are able to learn up to eight skills. Skills will need to be forgotten by the character in order to learn new skills. During battle, a glimmer is denoted by a lightbulb appearing before an attack. This indicates that a new move was learned. Learned skills can be forgotten.
Skills from previous generations may be re-learned from the Skill Dojo in Avalon Castle.
Ward moves can also be learned and can be glimmered by characters. These moves allow characters to anticipate and evade special moves performed by the enemy. Ward icons will be displayed next to the skill name instead of the weapon. Ward moves do not consume any combat resources.
Skill System Resources
- Main article: List of Romancing SaGa 2 spellsSpells in Romancing SaGa 2 can be used to attack monsters or heal allies.
Spells are derived from different attributes of magic available in the game:
- Powerful Pyrology - Powerful, offensive magic that uses intense flames. Spells available with this magic include Fireball, Self-immolation, Flame Whip and more.
- Soothing Hydrology - Magic that heals HP, cures ailments, and boosts defense. Spells available with this magic include Life Water, Physic Water, Mist Cover and more.
- Augmentive Terrology - Magic that buffs or debuffs targets. Spells available with this magic include Gilden Strength, Entangle, Earth Heal and more.
- Spatial Aerology - Magic that can cause indirect damage or absorb hits. Spells available with this magic include Blades of Wind, Air Screen, HP Absorb and more.
- Mysterious Cosmology - Boundless magic that uses the vast heavens. Spells available with this magic include Lightball, Moonlight, Sunlight and more.
Each attribute of magic has its own counterpart. Opposing attributes include Pyrology and Hydrology, Terrology and Aerology, Cosmology and a hidden 6th school of magic. Spells of one kind of magic and its counterpart cannot be learned at the same time. If a Pyrology spell is learned, a Hydrology spell cannot be learned until the Pyrology spell is forgotten and vice-versa.
There are also certain spells that combine two attributes and other spells that pertain to ancient magic.
Romancing SaGa 2 functions off of a successional system, where after certain events, time moves forward, leading to a new generation of characters. This allows the players the chance to try a new set of characters and explore new storylines.
There are three conditions for Succession which will cause the current player's emperor to be succeeded by a new character:
- Emperor's LP is reduced to 0 - When the emperor dies after LP is reduced to 0, one of the remaining party members will be the heir.
- Party is defeated in battle - When the entire party is defeated in battle, four random characters will be available to become heir.
- Many years have passed - When a long period of time passes due to an event, four random characters will be available to become heir.
The availability of certain Heirs will be dependent on how the previous emperor left the throne.
Following the Succession procedure, a list of candidates for Succession will be made available to the player. After selecting an Heir, the inheritance ceremony will take place in the throne room. The new emperor will not have any allies so allies will need to be recruited.
Upon completing the Succession, the Heir will inherit the HP, MP and SP of the previous emperor if those values are higher than the stats of the Heir. If the Heir's values for those stats are higher, the Heir's values will be retained instead. Other stats will use the heir's values.
The previous emperor's equipment can be found in the castle's storeroom.
- Main article: Formation System (Romancing SaGa 2)'Romancing SaGa 2 features a formation system where players can augment their party further through learning new formations. There are 16 total formations in the original SNES version (1 being inaccessible without a gameshark), and 18 in the remake on iOS, Android, Vita. The original inaccessible one on the SNES was brought back and implemented with 2 additional formations added.
The equipment system in the game allows each character to equip up to 4 weapons/items and 3 pieces of armor (with a 4th possible one for fixed equipment for certain characters).
- See also: List of Romancing SaGa II weapons
There are eight types of weapons available within the game:
- Sword - A one-handed blade that is long and sharp. Lightweight and easy to handle, swords can typically lash out multiple quick attacks. It is in the same category as a Great Sword.
- Great Sword - Generally a large two-handed blade. The sheer size of these swords allows for skills that can dish out massive damage. It is in the same category as a Sword.
- Axe - A one-handed weapon with low accuracy. Provides long-ranged and anti-plant type attacks. It is in the same category as a Mace.
- Mace - A long weapon with a spiky tip. Includes hammers and staves. Has a vast set of special moves with bonus effects. It is in the same category as an Axe.
- Spear - A two-handed polearm with a sharp, bladed tip. Acquirable skills include piercing attacks. It is in the same category as a Short Sword.
- Short Sword - Thin swords that are lightweight and can perform piercing attacks. Easy to use with a large skill set. It is in the same category as a Spear.
- Bow - A two-handed weapon that specializes in long-ranged attacks. Difficult to wield, it can target all enemies or affect the mind.
- Martial Skill - Attacks that use bare hands and feet. Various skills can deal massive damage, but their power depends on the user.
Although skills may vary depending on the weapon used, tech points will be distributed to the category of weapons used in battle. If an axe is used, tech points gained for the axe will also boost the mace's skill level.
- See also: List of Romancing SaGa 2 armor
There are eleven types of armor available within the game:
- Shields - Blocks/Diverts attacks. Shields can reduce damage and Guards can help you evade. No effect if using a two-handed weapon.
- Helmets - Solid headgear. Firmly protects the head. Strong against blunt attacks.
- Hats - Special headgear. Weaker against blunt attacks, but strong against magic. Many hats boost the mind or magic power.
- Light Armor - Lightweight armour. Thin armor to protect the chest. Recommended for classes that require nimble movement.
- Heavy Armor - Sturdy armour. Heavier than light armor. It provides extra defense. Great for heavyweight classes.
- Robes - Fabric for mages. Light, comfortable, and tough clothes. Perfect gear for magic users.
- Full Armor - Full body armor. Highly defensive armor. Not suitable for non-heavyweight classes.
- Gauntlets - Arm guards. Armor that protects the hands. Although lightweight and easy to use, they decrease the accuracy of archers.
- Greaves - Leg guards. Armor that protects the feet and shins. Some shoes may have special effects.
- Clothes - Under gear. Sturdy clothes worn under armour that boost defense from the inside out. Some classes prefer clothes over bulky armor.
- Accessories - Items with power. Not great at physical defense, but they offer resistance to effects or boost other stats.
Romancing SaGa 2, unlike other titles produced by Square Enix, does not use a random chance encounter system. All enemy encounters only happen when you run into a visible enemy entity on the map. However, enemy generation within the encounter is impacted by the enemy type you ran into on the map screen and by your total battle count. In the remake versions of the game, the battle count can be accessed by asking the minister sitting in the small room in the lower right hand corner on the second floor of the Avalon castle.
- Main article: Damage Calculation
Damage calculation in Romancing SaGa 2 is an incredibly complex black box process. A damage calculator can be found here.
- Main article: List of Romancing SaGa 2 characters
- Leon - King of Avalon. Father to Victor and Gerard.
- Victor - Prince of Avalon. Leon's oldest son and brother to Gerard.
- Gerard - Prince of Avalon. Leon's younger son and brother to Victor.
- The Final Emperor/Empress - Successor of Gerard.
- The Seven Heroes - A band of heroes who once saved the world on the brink of its destruction. Vanishing soon after saving the world, they've come back as demons to unleash chaos.
- Hive Queen