Shadow Hearts: Covenant May 5, 2011 17:58:47 GMT -5
Post by Bytor on May 5, 2011 17:58:47 GMT -5
Shadow Hearts: Covenant (シャドウハーツII Shadō Hātsu Tsū) also known in Japan as Shadow hearts II is the second installment in the Shadow hearts series. It was released by for the PlayStation 2 by Midway in North America and by Aruze in Japan. The game was released in Japan on February 19, 2004, in North America on September 27, 2004 and in Europe on March 11, 2005. Matsuzo Machida was the designer, the artwork was done by Takamasa Ohsawa and Miyako Kato and the music was composed by Yoshitaka Hirota, Yasunori Mitsuda, Kenji Ito,Ryo Fukuda and Tomoko Kobayashi. The game was pretty much a smash hit from the start. It scored high marks from critics and gamers alike, winning many awards as PS2 RPG of the year and thought of by many as one of the absolute best sequels ever released.
The story takes place in the same alternate reality as the first release. But it starts ! 1 1/2 years after the events of Shadow Heart. WWI is in full swing and several factions are also attempting to gain power throughout various diabolical plots. The story contains Yuri from the first game and a wide variety of individual characters such as Karin Koenig (A German officer), Gepetto (a renowned puppeteer), Joachim Valentine (a French vampire) and even Princess Anastasia Romanov and Rasputin. The diverse group basically once again attempt to save the world from apocalypse, and once again the tale is convoluted and complex (it actually has two different endings).
Game play is noticeably similar with many additions and improvements, both on the Judgement Ring as well as battle options, such as combos, themselves. The action is still typical turn based RPG and interactions with NPC's provide the back drop both on the story and upon side missions. Basically battles were tweaked to provide more options and a better grip on attacks, attack modes and defense from the first game.
The attention and marks Covenant garnered not only helped the series but also set the stage for the next installment. The game was received well by newer players (it especially sold well in the US) and fans of the previous version for the vast majority raved about the new improvements. Graphics, cut scenes, story, NPC involvement, and even voice acting were all praised as a vast improvement over the first game.