Nights of Azure 2: Bride of the New Moon (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Shane Jury 26.01.2018

Review for Nights of Azure 2: Bride of the New Moon on Nintendo Switch

Made by developer Gust and published by Koei Tecmo, the first Nights of Azure was released in 2016, and told the story of a recovering world. Namely, from the remnants of an evil being defeated many centuries previous, and the evil it left behind to inhabit the night and plague humanity. The game tells the tale of a Holy Knight in her mission to aid her friend that has been chosen as a sacrifice to keep the night at bay. Nights of Azure 2: Bride of the New Moon, released a year later, takes place not long after the first game, and follows a similar premise with a new cast. After checking it out on PC and PS4, how does the sequel fare on Nintendo Switch?

Nights of Azure 2 follows an agent of Curia, an organisation formed to protect the peoples of the world from the demons that threaten them. The destinies of the agent, Aluche, and her childhood friend, Liliana, become intertwined as the latter is chosen for ritualistic slaughter to ward off the demon influence, and prevent the dreaded Moon Queen from rising once again. After being killed by the weakened form of the Moon Queen, Aluche is resurrected as a half-demon, and together with an estranged former acquaintance, seeks to find and aid the missing Liliana. Together with the more historical setting of the game's world, this plotline is surprisingly enticing on its own merit, keeping a healthy flow of exploration, story focus, and key events happening in sequence. The characters themselves, however, are a bit too cliché and rarely given sufficient growth; often substituting developmental possibilities for easy gratuitous fan service, despite the voice work and visual level being more than satisfactory for the hardware.

Nights of Azure 2 primarily plays as a free-roaming action RPG, with two human characters and two helper creatures named 'Servans' as the fighter party. Field gameplay consists of exploring the environment and finding the next checkpoint or plot advancement point in the time given. Starting off with only ten minutes to explore before Aluche's demon blood overwhelms her, this countdown limit begins as somewhat restrictive, but with subsequent increases upon hitting certain checkpoints, and a quick warp function at said places, it becomes far less of an issue, and helps to emphasise the corruption within the main character's blood.

Screenshot for Nights of Azure 2: Bride of the New Moon on Nintendo Switch

When not in the field, the party can rest at the Hotel Eterna, the game's main hub. Run by another potential party member, this is where the timer can be reset, the game can be saved, each key individual can bond with special scenes, and where character ability upgrades can be used. This is where the biggest variety and options for customisation arise from, as Aluche can utilise many forms of weapon with lots of damage.

The battle system itself has a good amount of depth, mainly revolving around two primary buttons for Aluche's striking combos, but allowing for advanced techniques with the other party member and Servans for tougher foes, with more attacking options available after successful character affection bonding. The first few battles act as the game's tutorial to the system, and although a large amount of new terminology is used, it is still easy to follow. Fights tend to be initiated and over quickly, but the game's camera makes focusing on a singular opponent more difficult than it should be.

Servans are the key to exploring the areas and unlocking new parts to venture into, although the limited number that can be taken at once, and the inability to exchange them while in the field is very limiting. This does encourage swapping out at the hotel, and trying new Servans when found, but can be annoying for purely expedition purposes.

As expected of an RPG, Nights of Azure 2 is a fairly lengthy title. With a long storyline to clear, many optional side-quests to play and garner rewards from, up to seven characters to partner with and use in battle, many new abilities to unlock for fights, and even a New Game Plus mode, fans of the first outing will find plenty to love. Newcomers are slightly less catered for, but the effective tutorial system, glossary function for the more abstract jargon, and enticing narrative build should still engage with most.

Screenshot for Nights of Azure 2: Bride of the New Moon on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

7/10
Rated 7 out of 10

Very Good - Bronze Award

Rated 7 out of 10

An iffy camera system and questionable design decisions only slightly mar what is otherwise an enjoyable battle system and notably engaging narrative in Nights of Azure 2: Bride of the New Moon for Nintendo Switch. Veterans of the first game will find a snug fit, with new players quickly welcomed in.

Developer

Gust

Publisher

Koei Tecmo

Genre

Real Time RPG

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  7/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

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