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Are you a fan of multiple endings? Do you enjoy having the ability to pick and choose what characters join your party? Ever find yourself wishing you could see the plotline from a second perspective?
Then this is the game for you!
Star Ocean: The Second Story
IGN’s Rating: 8.8 out of 10
Let’s start with the perks to playing this game: there are 80 different endings (or, rather, character epilogues), 11 main characters to mix and match when it comes to recruiting your party, and when you start the game you have the choice between playing as Claude or Rena — whichever one you select determines what pieces of the storyline you get to see. This means if you want the whole story, you’ll have to play through this game twice so you can see both Claude and Rena’s perspectives.
I am crazy for this game; I find the replay value absolutely fantastic. The first time I picked up the controller for this little beauty, I chose to play as Rena: the alien girl living on the planet Expel. Her personal story was astounding and involved a quest of discovering who she truly was. After I finished the game, I reset and chose Claude: the Earthen boy who has just been promoted to be an Ensign in the Earth Federation, and as I played through it the second time, things I didn’t understand in the beginning suddenly made sense. Plotholes were filled.
No matter who you start out with, they inevitably run into the other and become your first party member. The neat thing is this: let’s say you pick Claude. You start off on Earth, accidentally wind up on the planet Expel, and then see Rena being chased by a monster. You have no idea where you are or what she is doing. If you pick Rena, you begin the game in Expel and actually see what drove the monster to attack her. The entire game is like this. If you’re playing as one character, you don’t get to see the other when they run off alone, nor do you get to hear their thoughts about a situation. This is why I say you must play it at least twice so you can get the full story and see what happens to both characters.