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#ThrowbackRPG – Top 7 PlayStation 2 RPG

Dragon Quest VIII - Featured

PlayStation 2 is a home video game console and also a successor of PlayStation which was released in 2000. Although it is considered old and classic now, but many RPG lovers agree that PlayStation 2 has a lot of great RPG like PlayStation. Many of the popular games today starts from the mechanics that the PlayStation 2 RPG used before. Here are the top 7 PlayStation 2 RPG that you should know.

7. Kingdom Hearts

Kingdom Hearts Wallpaper

Kingdom Hearts firstly released in 2002, for PlayStation 2 and bringing new sensation in playing RPG at that moment. It introduced the action-RPG mechanics with hack-and-slash battle system. Instead of waiting for turns, we can keep whacking and smashing the enemies with the signature weapon of the main character. Quite a fresh air while people busy talking about Final Fantasy X at that time.

The main protagonists is a young boy named Sora who lived with his two childhood friends; one day they got separated and Sora begin his adventures, leaving his home in Destiny Island. From time to time, he learns that he is the chosen Keyblade wielder who has the duty to save the world from evil. During his adventures, Sora finds new companions from the legendary Disney characters: Donald and Goofy.

6. Kingdom Hearts II

Kingdom Hearts II Wallpaper

Kingdom Hearts II is the sequel of Kingdom Hearts and Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories which was released in 2005. Kingdom Hearts II is still developed and published by Square Enix. It is the third game in the series and the fifth game in the timeline. Also released for PlayStation 2, this game still focuses on Sora and his friends continued the battle against Darkness.

Kingdom Hearts II offers a number of improvements over the previous game with many new features, most notably Sora’s Drive Form function, and improved camera, and in-battle options called Reaction Command. The popular theme song of the game is “Sanctuary”, performed by the famous Japanese female singer Utada Hikaru.

5. Star Ocean: Till the End of Time

Star Ocean - Till the End of Time

Star Ocean: Till the End of Time is the third installment of the Star Ocean main series. Developed by tri-Ace and published by Square Enix, this game was released in 2003 for PlayStation 2. Regarding the series’ timeline, this game takes place four hundred years after Star Ocean: The Second Story. This game introduces Fayt Leingod, a college student whom later bears the burden to save the world.

Star Ocean: Till the End of Time could be one of the tri-Ace series that has the best battle system; extending the limits of standard turn-based and action battle system. The combat system is much more similar to the system used in Rogue Galaxy, where it almost nullifies the system other than active battle system completely. Most of the system in-game is remarkably deep, but still fun to be played.

4. Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 3

Shin Megami Tensei Persona 3

This game is the fourth installment of the Persona series. Released in 2006, this game initially was made for PlayStation 2 console. An enhanced version titled Persona 3 FES was made on the same console with bonus chapter: The Answer (this version also available for PlayStation 3). There is also a PlayStation Portable version with an optional female protagonist titled Persona 3 Portable.

The story follows a group of high school students with the name of SEES who were trying to cooperate with each other in a world where death is acceptable. Together, they investigate a mysterious time period called Dark Hour and found out Tartarus, a huge tower containing Shadows. To fight them the members of SEES summons Persona as a manifestation of their inner self.

3. Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4

Persona 4 Wallpaper

Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4 is the fifth game of the Persona series which was released in multiplatform: PlayStation 2 and PlayStation 3. The successful initial release for PlayStation 2 has made Atlus decided to bring the game into next-generation consoles. The enchanced port of Persona 4 titled Persona 4 Golden was released for PlayStation Vita/PS TV in 2012 following its success.

The story follows a group of high school students dealing with a mysterious TV channel which distorted the truth of who they are and their identities. A string of bizarre murders related to the TV channel begins to disturb their peaceful town. Together, they explore the mysterious world inside the TV and rescuing other victims from death. The answer of who was the serial killer lies inside the TV.

2. Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King

Dragon Quest VIII Story Trailer Highlights English Voice Acting

Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King was originally made for PlayStation 2, and ported to 3DS with the same title. The trademark of this game is its artwork made by Akira Toriyama (known as the creator of Dragon Ball), and the cell-shading textures that was popular in PlayStation 2 before.

In this game, we will play as the silent hero (players can create a name for him) who is a royal guard of Trodain. One day, the villain boss Dhoulmagus cast a spell on the castle and turn everyone into animals and plants. It is the job of the hero and his companions to bring peace back to the world.

1. Final Fantasy X

Final Fantasy X Characters

Final Fantasy X would be one of the best PlayStation 2 games that have ever been played by any RPG lovers. The popularity of the game made by Square Enix proved to be on top of mind of every player at that time. Final Fantasy X was originally released in 2001 for PlayStation 2, and later released in PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, and PlayStation Vita with better graphics.

The story follows Tidus, the main protagonist and a famous Blitzball (a kind of sport played inside a sphere of water) player from Zanarkand and the son of Jecht. His adventure begins when his hometown attacked by an enormous monster called Sin. He traveled along with Yuna, a summoner who is trying to put an end to Sin. With everything it has, this game deserved the first place in PlayStation 2.

Read also: Top 7 PlayStation 3 JRPG You Shouldn’t Miss!

Although old, PlayStation 2 seems to hold a great potential in delivering a good RPG titles. The re-release of the popular games of PlayStation 2 on other consoles is the proof. All those games above are great, without a doubt. But if I have to choose, Kingdom Hearts series will be my favorite, as it brings a whole different gameplay among the Japanese RPG at that time. Truly unforgettable.

Which one do you think is the best PlayStation 2 RPG from the list above? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.

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Written by
A fellow RPG addict who played a lot of classic masterpieces from Square, Square-Enix, and Tri-Ace. "The epoch may change, but the classics will remain eternal"

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