Topic: Mezzo Plays Final Fantasy X-2
Yep, it's happening again. Final Fantasy X-2 (pronounced 'ten-two') is the direct sequel to Final Fantasy X, and the first actual sequel in the franchise. That helps explain its odd title a bit. Like before, I'm playing the HD Remastered version on PC, which conveniently has both games in a bundle, plus some other bonuses.
Eternal Calm is a cutscene that bridges the gap between X and X-2 a bit. It's not included with the original PS2 release of either, but is here along with everything else for the HD version.
Yuna's practicing her diving skills off the coast of Besaid, and 2 minutes 41 seconds is her new record for how long she can hold her breath. Wakka is impressed.
Two years have passed since Sin was defeated, and the Eternal Calm began.
She returns to the temple in Besaid Village, meeting with a concerned villager.
He's upset because his grandson has apparently joined the Youth League, while he and his wife are members of New Yevon.
"In the last two years, new groups have been springing up all over. Everyone wants to be part of a new age. Everyone wants to build a new age. Everyone wants to build a new Spira. People have different ideas, and sometimes, they disagree on the right thing to do. Some people worry about what the new age will bring. I just have to tell myself that for now, I'm doing the right thing."
Out on the bridge, Wakka asks Yuna if she's thought about settling down with someone. She's not interested in any potential suitors, and wants to make that clear to people.
A recruiter for the Youth League shows up, and Yuna gives her thoughts on that too.
Rikku arrives shortly after, and she has something to show them. She takes them out onto her salvage ship to do so.
The thing is a recording sphere. Kimahri apparently found it on Mt. Gagazet.
Tidus? Is that you? It's hard to tell since the footage is so grainy. He's stuck in a cage somewhere, ranting about how he only did what he could to protect the summoner.
Despite him not being able to be renamed in this game, they're still not going to ever mention his name. Rikku thinks that she should head off to find more about it, and that Yuna should come with. Wakka isn't sure about that.
But after all that she's done, shouldn't Yuna be able to do what she wants, not what everyone else wants?
Yuna comes to a decision.
After that's out of the way, we can begin the game proper.
We open at the blitzball stadium in Luca.
There's quite the crowd present.
Yuna takes the stage!
In the stands, Rikku watches from a pair of binoculars. Well, until a guard attacks her, giving her an opportunity for some cool poses.
As the concert continues, another girl finds herself in a similar situation.
Rikku and Paine hijack one of the guitarists' floating platforms and use it to move up to the stage.
Battle time already? This game's battle system is pretty different from its predecessor. This uses the Active Time Battle system common to many other Final Fantasy games, where each player's turn is on a timer (represented by the green bar underneath their HP display). For skills, Rikku has Steal available, and Paine can make use of Auron's Power Break.
Why are they fighting Yuna, though? Is this a fake?
After beating her, she runs offstage, and the other two pursue.
Some more goons pop up to bar the way, but they don't last long against Rikku and Paine's attacks.
This guy's a little tougher, though.
As is his partner. They move to attack, but find themselves repelled by a hail of gunfire.
The true Yuna has arrived.
The tall guy is Logos, the short one Ormi. Yuna and crew fight them together. Yuna has access to the Trigger Happy skill, which lets you continuously fire by tapping the button for a few seconds.
They sure didn't last long.
Fake Yuna appears to back them up.
She obliges, removing her disguise. "But it won't be yours for long!"
Time to show off a new gameplay mechanic. By using the Spherechange command, you can switch jobs mid-battle.
This comes with a very magical girl outfit change sequence.
And boom. Yuna's switched from Gunner to Songstress.
Now she can support the party with song and dance. Right now all she has is Darkness Dance, which blinds the opposition.
I decided to have Rikku switch jobs too. Leblanc here doesn't have anything of use to steal, so she changed from Thief to Warrior.
"So, I just hit stuff until we win? Sounds easy." This gives her the same skillset as Paine.
Leblanc was soon dealt with.
Yuna does a little dance.
And here's a closeup shot of the real Yuna, for completeness' sake.
The character advancement system is different now, using the traditional EXP and levels rather than the Sphere Grid. I'll get into that more later on. For now, let's get out of here.
Welcome aboard the Celsius. That's right, we get the airship right from the start this time.
Yuna explains that she couldn't control herself, and it was like someone else was dancing.
The inventor of the Garment Grid system offers his input.
Rikku's brother would have loved to see Yuna dance, but it's not happening.
No time to worry about that, though. The Gullwings have a new mission ready, but I'm not going for it quite yet.
Yuna takes a moment to muse on the new goth chick. Apparently Lulu was considered for this spot at one point, but the team realized that her harsh attitude just would not work with this game.
"I still don't know her very well. She's not exactly the talkative type. Apparently she joined the Gullwings shortly before I did..."
Like in X-1, save spheres give a full HP/MP restore, plus allow you to board the airship from anywhere. This one marks a good stopping point for now, before the Gullwings head out for their next mission.