NOTE: THIS REVIEW IS MY OPINION ONLY. ALL IMAGES TAKE FROM THE GAME WITH MY PS VITA.
Conception 2: Children of the Seven Stars is a Role-Playing video game developed by Spike Chunsoft and published in North America by Atlus. It is the second game in the Conception series, the first being only released in Japan. Both games are stand alone stories, so there is no need to know the first game to enjoy the second. The game was released in North America in 2014 and is available for the 3DS and the PS Vita. The PS Vita version is the one reviewed here.
Conception 2 is set in a pseudo-futuristic world in which technology and magic co-exist. The land is plagued by pockets of dark energy called Dusk Circles, which spawn demons that terrorize the inhabitants. You play as a young man, named Wake Archus, but for this review, shall be referred to the name I gave him, Rock Hard (you’ll know why soon). Rock is discovered to have the mark of the Star God on his hand, which means he is destined to fight these demons. He is sent to a training academy/high school for such children to learn to defend their world. It is discovered that Rock is special. While not rated as one of the top fighters (S-Rank) he is able to generate Ether, the opposite element to Dusk. This enables him to enter the Dusk circles along with a partner and defeat the evil within, closing the circle forever He is also unique in that he has an one hundred percent success rate when he “classmates” with an S-Rank female to create Star Children, miniature adventurers you take into battle. For this, you are given the title, “God’s Gift.” Women want you. Guys want to be you. Even the teachers flirt with you. You are a cosmically appointed stud!
Classmating isn’t a dirty as you might think, but it’s close enough. With an S-Ranked female and a magical matryoshka doll (think Russian nesting doll), you go through a special ceremony at the Church. The students touch, the girl gets all glowy, and ta-da! Out of the matryoshka doll pops out your cosmic crotch fruit- I mean Star Child. You choose the child’s class (from gunslinger to mage to thief to healer etc) and even name them. You need three star children to create a team to take into battle and you can have three teams, Of course, the girl you classmate with determines the Star Child’s stats (and hair colour.) So you are encouraged to classmate with four different girls (with a few others later on in the game)
Your initial choices in possible Conception buddies run the gamit of the usual anime girl stereotypes. You have Fuuko, a pink haired girl next door type who was one of the first people you met. There is the shy Narika, who has trouble saying no when others thrust responsibilities on her. Then there is Ellie, who works for the Church and splits her time between her Church and Academy duties. Lastly, there is Chloe, a genius type who, despite being only a teen, is also one of your instructors. You meet and get to classmate with three other girls, Feene, Torrie and Serina, as you progress in the game.
The battle system is like your typical turn-based RPG, but you party attacks in groups. Rock and his partner (one of the S-Ranked females) attack as one, while the Star Children attack in their group of threes. You can move you characters around the enemy to find a weak point to attack from (usually the flank) or attack head on for higher risk/higher reward) You can use magic or skills which you lean as you go up in levels. You can end up in battle with multiple enemies and you can split your groups off to fight more than one at a time.
Between dungeons ,you can hang out at the academy, buying new equipment, managing your party, training, or classmating (giggity) to create more Star children. You can also talk to other students including the girls you classmate with. This helps to improve your relationship with the girls, as the more they like you, the higher your offspring’s stats are. You often will have to talk to someone to advance the story as you continue the game
Conception 2 works well as a game. The unique was you use the Star Children as you party members add a management element to the game. Some might die and you need to replace them. As more classes become available, you might switch out your party. Different girls may result in higher stats, too. and the presence of their “mother” might give some an advantage in battle. You have to keep this in mind as the game gets harder.
Overall, this is a good game. the premise is different, but it is not as over the top as some games. Sure your characters battle armour may look like fetish wear (especially Chloe’s! ) but it fits in with the overall tone. The voices are well acted in the English version and the game does not take itself too seriously, with some sly jokes and the girls sometimes have fun at the Rock’s expense. Conception 2: Children of the Seven Stars is a great game for the Vita and even works on the PlayStation TV!
Conception 2: Children of the Seven Stars is available as a physical game or digital download. Check online for availability and pricing.