Top Critic Average
On its own, though, Zwei is still a beautifully crafted game and an addictive dungeon crawler. If you’re looking for something a bit more light-hearted to dive into after the more serious big releases coming out this time of year, this game would be right up your alley.
Zwei is a series originally released only in Japan, if I recall correctly, and the sequel Zwei: The Ilvard Insurrection, has made its way to North America, much to my pleasure. Introducing some interesting dual character mechanics, probably taken from the Zwei (German for two), provides a wonderful blend of monster mashing, puzzle solving, dungeon delving, and dancing that I’d be hard pressed to give a similarly done title off the top of my head.
Zwei: The Ilvard Insurrection might satisfy some of the hardcore Ys loving fans of Falcom, but I feel like this game will do more for any gamer who is intimidated by the developer's other series and bigger titles. It's a shame that I waited so long to get into the Zwei series, but I'm grateful for a chance to play such a fun and amusing action RPG in a time where serious story premises seem to be all we get.
Zwei: The Ilvard Insurrection does not shake up the JRPG formula too much outside of its unique EXP mechanic, but it does offer a fun dungeon-crawling experience with a good soundtrack to match.
Though repetitive at times, Zwei: The Ilvard Insurrection is a generally well-paced 15-20 hours of food-scoffing fun. Thanks to a wonderfully localized script, the cast are bursting with personality and the frequent moments of comedy are handled well.
With a great combat system that is supported by a good deal of lighthearted storytelling, this is an action RPG that people who have enjoyed games brought on by Nihon Falcom's recent rise in prominence in the west shouldn't miss out.
Unlike the first game, which was a flawed yet interesting experience, Zwei: Ilvard Insurrection opts for refinement, stripping away all of the half-baked elements. In almost every respect, this was the right decision to make. The combat is far more enjoyable, and there's none of the tedium that plagued the original. Still, the feeling of "sequelitis" is impossible to shake off. There's not a lot of content that's really fresh or exciting. The extra layers of polish just aren't enough for the conclusion of the Zwei saga to compete with Falcom's best. Then again, this is Falcom... Even its worst tends to be better than almost anything else out there. Really, the developer did a fine job here, and adventure-seekers won't be disappointed.
Zwei: The llvard Insurrection does not lack for character. The voice actors for the English version are spot on fantastic, Ragna specifically. The game's quirkiness adds to the game's atmosphere in a very Zelda-esque parade of characters and creatures. However, this does little to keep players interested in the plot or those very characters. The doldrum dialogue is often long-winded, unnecessary and frustratingly unskippable. So much so that I found myself mashing the proceed button while binging Netflix, trying desperately to get to the heart and the gem of Zwei: the combat.