Have you finished up your backlog of 3DS Japanese RPGs yet? If not, you might want to hurry up. Bravely Second: End Layer arrives on Friday, April 15 (tax day for those having to pay into the government) courtesy of Square Enix and Nintendo. The first game was widely considered one of the best RPGs on the system, and now a couple years later the sequel picks up after those events. Luckily, you don’t need to have played the original to understand the story of the sequel, although you might better enjoy some of the locations and characters that make a return.
Bravely Second: End Layer – The Ballad of the Three Cavaliers is currently available as a free demo download in the eShop. This bonus adventure is not featured in the main game, but gives players a taste of what to expect when it arrives on Friday. Bonuses that you collect can transfer over to the full version of the game. Read on for the full press release from Nintendo, and check out our preview for more information, including screens and videos.
In 2014, the Bravely Default game introduced a new take on turn-based RPG combat with a one-of-a-kind risk-and-reward system. The unique battle system, acclaimed by critics and loved by fans, returns deeper than ever in Bravely Second: End Layer, the direct sequel to Bravely Default. Developed by SQUARE ENIX, the masters of the role-playing genre, Bravely Second: End Layer launches exclusively for the Nintendo 3DS family of systems on April 15.
Players who want to try out the game before they buy it can head to Nintendo eShop on Nintendo 3DS right now and download the free demo, titled Bravely Second: End Layer – The Ballad of the Three Cavaliers. The free demo lets players embark on a bonus adventure that is not featured in the main game. Playing the demo will net players bonuses that can transfer to the full version of the game once purchased.
Picking up a few years after the events of the last game, Bravely Second: End Layer finds returning fan-favorite characters Tiz and Edea joining up with newcomers Yew and Magnolia to rescue an old friend. Despite the return of some familiar faces, the story is completely new, thrusting players into a sprawling adventure full of dangerous enemies, gorgeous locales and 30 job classes to master.
“Fans of classic role-playing games like Fire Emblem and SQUARE ENIX’s FINAL FANTASY series will love Bravely Second: End Layer,” said Scott Moffitt, Nintendo of America’s Executive Vice President of Sales & Marketing. “And while fans of the first game will appreciate the returning characters and continuing story, newcomers can just as easily dive into this memorable RPG experience.”
When battling in Bravely Second: End Layer, players can perform actions such as attacking with a weapon, casting a spell or using an item, as well as choose between one of two distinct commands: “Brave” or “Default.” By selecting Brave, players can spend one or more Brave Points (BP) to perform an extra action. Choosing Default skips a turn, but stocks 1 BP. Characters will also take less damage while in the Default state. By stocking BP, characters can use more powerful moves and abilities on their respective turns. BP can also be “borrowed” from future turns, but if the value drops below zero, players will be at the mercy of their foes. This risk-and-reward system encourages a deeper level of strategic thinking when battling the various enemies in the game.
In addition to the fast-paced battle mechanics, the job system found in the original Bravely Default also returns, but is now more expanded and robust. In Bravely Second: End Layer, players can choose from 30 different job classes that can be assigned to and mastered by the characters in the game. These include some returning jobs like Knight, Monk and Black Mage, as well as many new job classes like Wizard and Fencer. Bravely Second: End Layer even includes jobs like Catmancer, which finds players training cats to perform abilities learned from enemies. When mastering each of the classes in the game, characters will learn special abilities that can be unleashed in battle. And by using the “Favorites” feature new to Bravely Second: End Layer, players can now save their favorite job, ability and equipment configurations for their party to easily switch between whenever they are needed.
Another new feature in Bravely Second: End Layer is the ability to chain together consecutive battles for bonus experience points. By winning a battle in a single turn, another wave of enemies will appear, giving players the chance to defeat them for more rewards. By chaining together these battles, players can earn tons of extra experience points and level up much faster.
Although the game is primarily a single-player experience, Bravely Second: End Layer takes advantage of wireless features like StreetPass to bring friends around the world into the adventure. With StreetPass or a wireless Internet connection, players can borrow job levels and abilities from friends who also own the game. They can also invite a friend into battle to attack for one move. By summoning a powerful friend, the tide of battle can quickly turn, maybe even deciding the difference between victory and defeat.
In addition to Bravely Second: End Layer, role-playing fans are in for an absolute treat this year with a wide variety of RPGs now available and coming soon for Wii U and the Nintendo 3DS family of systems. Games now available for Nintendo 3DS include FINAL FANTASY EXPLORERS from SQUARE ENIX, Project X Zone 2 from BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment America, Inc. and the original Pokémon games (Pokémon Red Version and Pokémon Blue Version, as well as Pokémon Yellow Version: Special Pikachu Edition) in the Nintendo eShop. Launching June 24 for Wii U, Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE lets players slay monsters – and slay like a pop star – all at the same time in a new RPG from acclaimed developer ATLUS. Also, the newest Nintendo 3DS installment in the popular Monster Hunter action RPG series from Capcom is making its way to the West this summer in Monster Hunter Generations. Finally, Dragon Quest VII: Fragments of the Forgotten Past launches exclusively for Nintendo 3DS later this year.
Bravely Second: End Layer launches on April 15 and can be purchased in stores, in Nintendo eShop on Nintendo 3DS and at Nintendo.com at a suggested retail price of $39.99. For more information about the game, visit http://bravelysecond.nintendo.com/.