I recently reviewed Final Fantasy X HD Remaster, so it made sense to review the sequel as well since it was on the disc. Like the first game, Final Fantasy X-2 HD Remaster is based on the International release that added a wide variety of content to the game including the Creature Creator and Last Mission.
That said, the new coat of paint freshens X-2 up very nicely. Even the secondary characters throughout the game look better than they did in Final Fantasy X, but not by much. Although like I said in the previous review, there are some areas that show there age; particularly in Bevelle where some of the buildings are clearly flat surfaces stretched to look three dimensional. As far as I can tell, the music remains the same. In several places it seems like Final Fantasy X got more attention than the sequel, but that is fine with me since X is the better of the two games. FFX-2's only strength is the quality of at least one of its new features, the Creature Creator.
The Creature Creator allows the player to capture various fiends throughout all of Spira and use them in battle. Fiends come in all shapes and sizes, but are AI controlled when used in battle. Leveling a fiend up unlocks a story that is unique to each creature known as a fiend tale. After leveling the creature five times (in most cases), you have the option of releasing the fiend to see it's fiend tale ending. Some fiends, especially humanoids, do not have fiend tales but give you more options as to who you have in your party. Through the Creature Creator, the player has more variety of endgame objectives than in the original version.
Last Mission is included with Final Fantasy X-2 HD Remaster, which has previously never been available anywhere else other than Japan. Although Last Mission is easily the second weakest part of the entire package. In Last Mission you play as either Yuna, Riku, or Paine and explore a eighty floor tower. Last Mission is a turn based RPG in which you move across a series of squares to pick up items, dress spheres, and books. Last Mission becomes very dull very quickly and the game doesn't feel particularly well polished. There is a cutscene every ten floors in an attempt to break up the awfully designed and boring gameplay, but fails to be the saving grace that keeps Last Mission from being a monotonous, glorified mini-game.
Overall, Final Fantasy X-2 HD Remaster offers a lot of content for people who would be interested in it. If you liked Final Fantasy X-2 on the PS2, then you will have a blast with this game. I'd even recommend that anyone who never played X-2 should at least try it out since it comes with Final Fantasy X. It isn't for everyone, but Final Fantasy X-2 HD Remaster offers a great deal of content for fans to enjoy for countless hours.
RBFB Rating: B
Tomorrow I'll be discussing the Audio Drama included with the two games, and I will speculate on what this series has in store for it. So keep an eye out for that.