Now that Final Fantasy 8 is on Steam, I went hunting for another favorite Playstation RPG, Suikoden 2. No luck on Steam, but it was on Amazon, and I had to pop my eyes back in their sockets. A new one on Amazon is yours for just…$699.99! Yes, no misplaced decimal there. A penny shy of $700 for a game released in 1999. A used one is about a hundred bucks.
I bought a used copy and a guidebook on Ebay in 2000 for less than $10. I played it a couple times through, and in 2002, sold both on Ebay for almost $30.
The gameplay is typical RPG and its graphics are anime. Suikoden 2 proves the point that a game can be great without great graphics and this game is freaking great. It’s an epic journey of two friends who come of age in a violent and dark world. Their friendship is tested, and they go from innocent kids playing together to warlords who topple an empire. There are also vampires, a ton of characters, several twists and turns, and an Iron Chef mini-game.
The cooking mini-game is what I remember most about Suikoden 2. It alone would be a fun iOS app. There are different levels of competition you must beat in order to become the master chef. Three courses have to be prepared, and you’re not given the ingredients, you have to procure them – finding the ingredients is a challenge in itself as many are hidden or given only when a certain task is completed. The food is based on Japanese cuisine – ramen, tempura, fried fish balls, etc. I had no idea what Tetsu was until I played this game.
Suikoden 2 is one of the best, and when it appears on Steam, I will fry up some fish balls to celebrate.