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Role-playing/Third-Person 2D RPG
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The Emperor of Paramekia, drunk on his own power, has summoned monsters from another realm to terrorize his people and to aid him in his goal of world domination. The first victims of the Emperor's capriciousness are the citizens of the Kingdom of Phin. Three Phin youths vow to avenge their parents' murders and to destroy the monsters that have invaded the planet, eventually hoping to find and oust the Emperor.
Along the way, the three main characters meet up with, or are assigned by Queen Hilda, hired help to assist them along the way. There are a maximum of four party members at a given time. In order to travel about the world freely, the team must make use of several modes of transportation. These include a canoe, a pirate ship, an ice sled, an airship, and making his debut in Final Fantasy II, the Chocobo, all at specific points during the game.
Battles are conducted in the standard RPG menu-based format. Defeating monsters will bring in cash, and sometimes a special item or spell. However, instead of gaining experience points Final Fantasy II employs a unique feature: the more you use something, the more effective it becomes. Thus, while there are individual levels of expertise earned for each weapon, spell, or shield, the character himself doesn't "level up."
Final Fantasy II also makes use of a "password" feature. Chatting with townspeople can provide you with key words you can utter to other people, which can result in obtaining useful information. Passwords must be discovered and used in order to make progress throughout various sections of the game.
Dungeons are often bigger and harder than in the game's predecessor, Final Fantasy. Caves, castles and the like are often at least half a dozen floors high, and feature trap doors and false exits. Saving your progress is possible only on the overworld. ~ Christian Huey, All Game Guide