Developer: Wanin International
Editor: International idea factory
Platforms: PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5 (revised), Switch
Release date: Available now
Price: $49.99 – Available here
When the original Diver at dusk released three years ago, few would have guessed that a sequel would eventually come to the West as well. With competent combat and a pretty interesting storyline, the original title has settled in well as a pretty solid action RPG developed in Taiwan and now the story continues almost straight on with Diver at dusk 2. Now, with Idea Factory International behind the Western version and some fancy mechanics, is this sequel worth digging into?
A year after the events of the first game, Yumo continues her training in order to master the Dragon Vein energy that runs through her body and the D.Arm that she uses to fight against the Chaos Beasts that still spawn from fissures connecting his home in Taipei’s Ximending shopping district in the vibrant kingdom of Youshanding. Balancing her freshman life in college and continuing to work as a dishwasher alongside her friends and allies at Tumaz Mart, she came to welcome her new life despite occasional bouts of pain that still linger due to her body. human containing the power of Dragon Vein.
Things suddenly get worse when the otherworld Youshanding starts to blend into the human realm and a strange and, again, mysterious boy starts to appear in the realm and is chased away by someone with similar abilities to Yumo. With his hometown in danger and more mysteries popping up left and right, Yumo must do his best to find out the reason behind the latest disturbances and who or what may be behind it. Of course, Yumo is not alone in this fight as all of her friends from the previous game have returned with her Zunlun allies ready to fight alongside her in the spirit realm and her human allies ready to support her at home.
Now while Diver at dusk 2 provides a brief recap of the events that happened in the first game, it only provides the briefest introduction to the real world itself and most of the characters players are expected to know. There are some additional details provided in the game’s glossary shortly after the start, but beyond that the game does very little to catch players up as to who the characters are and what happened in the game. previous game. This can make the introduction very difficult for those new to the game now, as the character interactions and plot progression act as if players are fully familiar with the first game. That being said, the overall storyline ultimately works properly for newcomers once it begins to unfold and reveal twists and major events at a rapid pace. Although, minus a very unexpected reveal, players shouldn’t expect a very memorable storyline at the end and that’s partly thanks to the pacing of the game.
Between the slow introduction of a few new characters, the introduction of various new factions, and the return of returning characters to the party, the storyline takes an incredibly long time to kick off. Almost the first half of the entire game feels like a slow drag that can be incredibly difficult to navigate at times. Luckily, one thing that might help players get through the slow burn is the fact that the characters themselves are incredibly charming, and each has time to shine as they continue to develop throughout the game. secondary characters can have time for themselves, which is a bit surprising given the overall story. It’s worth noting that while many of the side quests players can take on are either incredibly bland or just reveal more history about Ximending, there are also side quests that help develop the main characters and even secondary characters in Tumaz Mart. even more so, making the characters the real driving force behind this mostly mundane storyline.
Diver at dusk 2Gameplay is split into two mostly distinct parts, as players will spend most of their time battling Chaos Beasts in dungeons and through side quests, but will spend the rest of their time wandering around Ximending. , prepare for fights, take on quests that have to do without fighting, and of course interact with most rapids. The Ximending location is filled with various things players can collect, ranging from items that can be used in battle, to unlockable songs, concept art, and even costume parts, although most of them are found in dungeons. It’s also filled with restaurants and food stalls where players can choose to eat meals and order takeout to provide temporary stat boosts or other bonuses the next time they enter a dungeon.
fight in Diver at dusk 2 is a pretty standard affair as players use light attacks to chain combos, harder heavy attacks, and signature skills that require the use of SP. SP recovers over time, though players can time their dodges at just the right time to not only instantly recover SP and temporarily slow down time, allowing for a powerful ROI. Along with these players, they will also have a BP gauge that will fill up as they deal damage and unleash burst attacks on enemies. Once the gauge is filled enough, characters can enter a Burst state which provides a massive damage boost and even unlocks an additional ultimate attack which players can obtain by lunging at enemies while transforming and building further another meter. Once the meter reaches 180% they can unleash an ultimate attack which decimates most standard enemies and can instantly shatter boss armor although an even stronger version of an ultimate attack can be unleashed on charge maximum.
During dungeon fights, players will almost always have at least a few other characters in their party and it is possible to swap between them during combat to use each of their different fighting styles to defeat enemies. It should be noted that there is a cooldown when swapping characters and some enemies take bonus damage from some allies, players will want to keep an eye on things themselves as the Allied AI is incredibly awful. Even when tuned to be aggressive in a fight, allies often fail to attack enemies unless they’re nearby, making them somewhat useless at times.
It’s a shame because despite the smooth combo systems and special skills that can chain together to make the fight satisfying, it’s held back by the aforementioned poor AI and the fact that almost all enemies in the game are a health sponge. . Even when properly leveled, and eventually over-leveled enough, enemies in Dusk Diver 2 simply refuse to fight with combo chains easily reaching over 150 hits on enemies before one is defeated, even with mixed breaking strikes. It often makes enemy encounters that should have been finished in a minute take much longer than it should just because the same enemy player fought in one of the early dungeons is back with a different color and a lot more health.
As players fight through dungeons, they will earn EXP, get orbs, and get various drops from enemies that can be used to craft orbs and refine gear. Orbs can provide a wide variety of benefits when obtained and equipped for the player, while equipping is standard fare for an RPG and primarily benefits from providing orb slots. It’s worth noting that EXP is handled in a rather odd way in Dusk Diver 2, as all characters draw from the same pool, which means that in order to upgrade one character, another will be lacking. As characters level up, they will need additional EXP to grow stronger to encourage its spread, but thanks to the fact that players will still have Yumo in their party and other characters will occasionally leave the party, it’s best to focus on leveling up Yumo and maybe a party member to get the most out of their skills. That being said, those looking to boost each character and see what each character has to offer will find a New Game+ option readily available after completing the game once.
Visuals and audio
When it comes to designing, Diver at dusk 2 is often a real treat as the character designs, especially Yumo and in his battle transformation, are bright and colorful to look at and there is strong fan service offered by both female and male characters. The world itself is beautiful, with Ximending being rather meticulously detailed in some areas and most of the dungeons players enter are unique in many ways. Unfortunately, not everything is great here as the dungeons, while unique to each other, are often repetitive when going through them and the monster variations are absolutely appalling. Often the game will act as if a new type of enemy is approaching only for it to be a palette swap of an opponent already fought with only really notable boss fights and only occasionally.
This release of Diver at dusk 2 features both the original Chinese vocal track as well as a Japanese vocal track accompanied by English subtitles. This works quite well as the Japanese cast handles their characters quite well and even the exploration conversations are translated, but it should be noted that even now the game text still contains grammatical errors and tense spelling errors. in time. The game’s soundtrack features an incredibly stunning collection of tracks, some with vocals, from a wide range of genres that vary from dungeon to dungeon and standard crawl through the city.
Diver at dusk 2 feels like a missed opportunity to really shine over its predecessor and if you’re a fan of the original this will be an easy game to recommend. With character stories that are charming and engaging compared to its lackluster base storyline, and improved combat that pits players against repetitive enemies with way too much health that drag out fights far longer than they should, there’s a lot of untapped potential in Diver at dusk 2 but it never quite gets to the point of being a great action-RPG and instead settles to be only marginally better than the original.
Capsule computers review guidelines can be found here.