Preview: Full Metal Alchemist 2: Curse of the Crimson Elixir (PS2)

Publisher: Square-Enix / Developer: Racjin / Genre: Action RPG / Release: 07-05

Following fast on the heels of Full Metal Alchemist and the Broken Angel, Curse of the Crimson Elixer is Square-Enix’s newest offering from the hit anime series.

Full Metal Alchemist 2: Curse of the Crimson Elixer is a prequel to Broken Angel, starting off in the same place as the series’ first episode. Edward and Alphonse’s adventure begins in the desert city of Lior, while investigating a cult, the Leto, the brothers encounter an inscrutable woman who gifts them with a ring. Soon the brothers are embroiled in a mystery involving vanishing villagers and the appearance of some peculiar creatures. Fans of the anime should be able to enjoy an original storyline that promises not to stray from the themes of the tv show.

A full half hour of animation has been created for the game, voiced by actors from the series. The voice-actors also provide vocalizations for the event sequences. Following the current trend are brightly coloured, cel-shaded graphics. This should work nicely with Full Metal Alchemist 2, keeping the anime feel.

The first Full Metal Alchemist was received rather tepidly (people didn’t like the voice acting, graphics, gamplay… uhm… the game in general), and it looks like Square-Enix is trying to learn from their mistakes. New modeling and animation hopes to bring Ed and Al vividly to life, as well as giving a bit more spirit to the gameplay.

One of the main complaints was the AI controlling Alphonse, mainly that it was really useless. Alphonse is essentially a tank and could take the damage, but wasn’t awesome as far as backup goes. Hopefully an ‘enhanced artificial intelligence’ will make Alphonse an ass-whuppin’ part of the team (he can help out in combos and such). Transmutable weapons return, along with other new weapons and items- also, said weapons will be useful not only for attacks, but for in-game puzzles as well. Hoping to add some spice to the battle system, there will be new alchemy attacks and the ability to customize combos.

L’Arc-en-Ciel lends their hit song “Ready Steady Go”, so L’Arc fans as well as angsty teenage girls should be pleased. (/eyeroll)

Racjin is back as the development team. I’ve heard rumours they have something to do with the ‘fun factor’ and raising its ‘ante’. I’m just saying.

Planned shipment date is July 2005. Forget the beach and sunshine, girls love pale boys I swear! Or they love gaming. Free games. Money. Yes.

Full Metal Alchemist 2: Curse of the Crimson Elixer
Ԛ©Hiromu Arakawa/Square-Enix, MBS, ANX, BONES, Dentsu 2005
Ԛ©Square-Enix. All Rights Reserved.
Ԛ©sra likes pie on Sundays.