The sequel to the popular Yo-Kai Watch series is finally out, and while it’s a great addition to the series, with a few kinks and buffs here and there it definitely could have been better.
“Fleshy Souls” and “Bony Spirits” are the two options you can pick, and the differences are so minimal that you can just pick a game based on the cover you like the most to be honest.
For die-hard players of the first instalment, there was probably a feeling of frustration and confusion as they were forced to basically replay the beginning of the first game all over again – from learning the basics, meeting Whisper, and then doing the same tedious tasks and quests that you were so happy to have seen the back of the first time around. This is great for players just being introduced to the series, but for veteran players it’s mind-numbingly unnecessary.
After that however, the world of Springdale is open for exploration once again, and this time, it’s been expanded! While the town and its neighbouring locations (such as San Fantastico) are filled with a plethora of colourful and quirky characters, the quests they have you do are still the basic fetch missions that require a lot of time and patience.
Another new experience in Yo-Kai Watch 2 is the introduction of Time Travel. You can now travel back in time to befriend Yo-kai only found in the olden days, and see the creation of the very first Yo-Kai Watch.
The most annoying new feature is perhaps the ability to travel by train. Like in real life, you’ll have to sit there and wait for the correct train at the correct time to get to your desired destination. As someone who already hates public transportation, this new mechanic was frustrating, especially if you got on the wrong train.
The roster of Yo-kai has grown by a considerable amount, and with over 180 new creatures to fight alongside, it’ll take a long time to meet them all. Version exclusive characters is what makes the difference between “Fleshy Souls” and “Bony Spirits”, with Komasan S only being available in the prior, while Jibanyan S being only found in the latter for example.
Most of the plot and story lines mimic that of the Anime, and as someone who is up to date with the Anime, it was great to see a throwback to a scenario that happened on screen.
The battle system is still the same, and while somewhat exciting to watch, it gets repetitive and dull as time goes on. While part of the charm of the game is to watch your Yo-Kai friends battle each other, it does get a bit dreary as all they do is take turns to hit each other, while sometimes calling upon their Soultimate move to get a cheap KO. More experienced players will find the charm of the battle system in teaming up Yo-Kai that work well together, but for casual players, it won’t matter.
Yo-Kai Watch 2 doesn’t offer anything extremely different or new to the series, but if you have the patience to sit through it and collect every Yo-Kai medal, then this is the game for you. The game would have been much better if they decided to forego the entire opening sequence and somehow find a way to change up the battle system, and buff out the aspects that make it lacklustre. Overall, it was still enjoyable, but probably only because I enjoy seeing Jibanyan’s cute little face on my screen every time he battles.