(Editor’s note: This article was originally published in the September 2003 Pirate Issue of GameCola, back when GameCola was published in a monthly online magazine format.)
First of all, it may make many people (or at least one person) very happy to know that in order to play this game, it is not at all necessary to play the first game, Legend of Legaia, and therefore I will not be giving constant reminders to play the previous game over the course of my review. With that out of the way, let’s move on to the review.
For this issue, I’m going to be doing things a little differently. Since this issue is geared towards pirates, I am going to get the general game info (score explaining, content, etc.) out of the way first, and then focus on the pirate aspect of the game.
This is a classic example of an RPG that could have been a whole lot more fun if not for the excessive amount of random encounters. The story and minigames are enough to keep you entertained enough to finish the game, and probably even enjoy yourself, but getting attacked every 2-3 steps in some areas gets old very fast. Once you finish the game, even if you enjoyed the story, you probably will be too turned off by the random encounters to want to play another time.
One thing that might keep you going, though, is the side things you can do. In certain areas of the game, you are able to set up camp and chat with your companions to learn more of their background stories, and maybe even gain a nickname for yourself. At many different places in the game, people will talk to you and ask you questions, or ask you to play a little game with them. Depending on your answers or performance, you could be given a nickname such as “Sidejumper” or “Sword Holder.”
In addition to the names and games, each character can learn recipes and cook up various tasty dishes that, when eaten, change your character’s stats temporarily, i.e. raise strength and lower defense. If you tire of cooking and want to improve your fighting ability rather than your diet, you can use many different materials to add to your weapons and armor to forge new, more powerful ones.
The controls are easy enough to get used to, nothing too different from any other RPG, and the battle system is easy to master (they even give you a nice little tutorial at the beginning, in case you were lost). The visuals and music are nice to look at/listen to, and if all of these good points are enough to get you to overlook the annoying random encounters, which shouldn’t be too tough to do, you will find yourself at the pirate aspect of the game sooner than later.
The pirate aspect takes place between the beginning and end of the game, and isn’t much, but more than you’d find in the average game. First and most importantly, there is a sweet little scantily clad piratey lady (Sharon) who attacks enemies with her saber (and butt, if necessary). She dresses more like a pirate than she acts, and doesn’t claim to be a pirate herself, although her father is. At one point in the game, you must get a ship, and she takes you to meet her pirate buddies to help you out with that. Even though none of the pirates actually join you, they give the game about an eyepatch and half a peg-leg worth of pirateness, which is always good.
Overall, the game is fun to play if you can deal with the constant encounters, and although it isn’t based on pirates or even piratey at all save for one part, it still has enough pirate juice in it to make you let out half an “arrr.”