Illusia 2 is, as the title implies, the sequel to the 2010 action-RPG title Illusia from Gamevil. And, as is the case with many sequels, your desire to play this one may largely hinge on just how hungry for more the first one left you.
This time, you take control of one of three character types: a magician, a warrior, or our pick, the all-new assassin, who dual-wields a pair of blades. The story follows your chosen hero as he learns that something is amiss in the dreams of not only himself, but his fellow villagers as well. Investigating the matter leads the hero to an all-new dream world, one which is comprised of four new lands to explore, each with a different theme. It’s a simple narrative, and while it may not have as much of a bite as, say, Chaos Rings II, it does the job.
Tonight I feel like frog legs.
Though it is touted as an action-RPG, Illusia 2 approaches the concept a little differently than one might expect, should they be unfamiliar with Korean RPGs. Rather than a top-down affair like some games in The Legend of Zelda series or Secret of Mana, Illusia 2 is a side-scroller with some platforming elements thrown in. And yet, while battles may appear to be in real-time, there are still some RPG elements in play such as attacks “missing” where most action games would register a hit. But for the most part, it’s just a matter of engaging enemies, mashing the attack button, hoping your stats can outdo theirs, and reaping whatever spoils they leave behind when vanquished.
The controls for the game feel a little peculiar, and that’s even while ignoring the jump and attack buttons being reversed from their traditional setup. Platforming plays an important part in moving around the title’s almost nonsensical map, and making simple jumps can be more difficult than they should be. At best, this tends to prove a minor inconvenience, though at worst, with the frequent regeneration of enemies, it can drop you right into skirmishes you might rather avoid.
Make like George Washington.
On the RPG side of things, lots of items are dropped by enemies, or can be bought from merchants, and even refined by blacksmiths. Between these and upgradable skills, you can customize your character to your liking, and may find yourself doing so frequently. While most of the game feels like platforming action with some RPG elements thrown in, there is also a fair amount of story here as well, and the cut scenes unfortunately tend to drag things down. Besides tiny text on the iPhone’s screen, the translation is uneven. It feels like there were two people working on it, and one slept most of the time, resulting in some dialogue which seems perfectly fine, while other parts range from laughably bad to downright nonsensical.
Rounding things off, Illusia 2’s graphics are as good as ever, and the soundtrack is kind of catchy as well. And, just as in the original, there are a number of things you can do online to prolong the experience, including PVP, Rush and Defense modes, and more.
In the end, Illusia 2 attempts to be a jack-of-all-trades, but is ultimately the master of none. In other words, it does its thing pretty well, but not especially well, and is still fun to spend a bit of time with– especially as it’s a free download.