Console Corner: Bravely Default 2 review on Nintendo Switch

Damien Charles Lucas February 25, 2021

It’s the game Japanese RPG fans have been waiting for but how does Bravely Default 2 fare under the weight of expectation on Nintendo Switch? Let’s find out…

Despite the title, this is actually the third game in the Bravely series and follows the original game, Bravely Default, and its direct sequel, Bravely Second: End Layer.

But while Second was a direct story continuation from the original, Bravely Default 2 features a new story and cast of characters. 

For those unfamiliar with the series, in essence Bravely Default 2 is a role-playing game with turn-based battles.

VHS | Reveal Trailer

Four main characters – which one is Elvis?

Bravely Default 2: Set in a brave new world

The game is set in a new world to previous games – on a continent named Excillant, which is divided into five kingdoms.

The game follows four main characters – young sailor Seth, refugee princess Gloria, travelling scholar Elvis, and mercenary Adelle.

The pressure on Bravely Default 2 was huge before its release. Hailed by Gamespot as the “most anticipated release after its announcement in 2020”, I’m pleased to say it doesn’t disappoint.

Get into the grind

It’s not perfect and critics will undoubtedly point to the difficulty and elements of grinding as negatives.

Take that, bee-type thing!

But if you’ll allow me to flip that on its head, certainly in terms of grind, this is one of the more enjoyable aspects of Bravely Default 2.

In fact, I would go as far as to say I’ve never played a game in which I’ve enjoyed grinding as much!

The added power of Switch afforded to developer Claytechworks means Bravely Default 2 boasts superb graphics that are a neat blend of the classic Bravely Default art style and Octopath Traveler.

Bravely Default 2 is built to last

What’s clear is this is a game built to last to keep you coming back for more over several months. It could be argued this is the perfect time to release Bravely Default 2 given many of us are locked in our houses!

With any game as vast as this, the key questions are ‘does it keep you coming back for more, does the grind end up grinding you down, and can it maintain that early momentum that reels you in as you progress?’

That thing looks hungry!

It’s a fine balance. Those moaning it’s too difficult would be the first to complain if Bravely Default 2 was too easy. I feel the difficulty – while demanding, particularly for newbies – strikes that balance more or less all the way through.

As you level up you should expect to encounter a more difficult challenge. And, yes, there’s no let up.

Strategy and sticking with it

This isn’t a game where you reach the status of invincibility blowing away all before you. Strategy and perseverance are key all the way through.

If that doesn’t sound like your bag, you may struggle with the effort-to-reward satisfaction ratios.

That’s a lot of stairs so let’s get going…

Personally, I’ve found it fun and rewarding right the way through. 

Those looking for radical changes or advancements may be disappointed too. But for me, this Bravely Default is a title that isn’t broken so doesn’t need fixing.

It’s addictive, satisfying fare that keeps you coming back for more without reinventing the wheel.

Its charm and engrossing gameplay experience far outweigh its imperfections. And it’s simply a must-have for Switch-owning RPG fans.

Rating: 8.5/10

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Damien is an experienced journalist and has seen it all as a West Ham season ticket holder of 30 years. Well, everything except a major trophy - sorry Intertoto. Jimmy Walker would have saved it