Parasite Eve 2

A good deal more action is present in the sequel to Square's hybrid RPG Parasite Eve.


Parasite Eve 2 dropped its predecessor's active-battle system in favor of something more grounded in real time. This is perhaps the most notable feature present in the version in Square's booth.

When confronted by an enemy, Aya will draw her weapon, and the battle will ensue in real time. Enemies will counterattack, and Aya remains limitedly mobile throughout. It is possible to pace backwards, but I had a hard time going in any other direction. For the most part, I simply blasted away at the creatures in front me, while inching backward in hopes of avoiding their attacks, which were generally few and far between. You execute Eve's powers by using the triangle button, in the default setup, which brings out a wireframe for range. The execution seemed pretty solid, and the holdup didn't throw off the pace of the battle. Though the battles were satisfying, I'm taking for granted the fact that they'll get much more challenging by the time the game is released.

The presentation seemed very much in the vein of what you'd expect from a survival-horror title. Cryptic, minimally informative prompts pop up when objects are examined, and the camera angles are quite constraining. Square uses the same FMV/real-time trick in this game that was introduced in Final Fantasy VIII during the first few scenes, and it really looked great; footage of a razed cityscape would stream as I guided Aya to her destination.

All in all, Parasite Eve 2 seems to be going in the direction of survival horror, though many RPG trappings remain; character advancement and item customization being the most notable. The addition of real-time battles seems to favor the series, though, so it'd be wise to keep an eye on this one.

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