Way Back When
2000’s creative and unconventional action-RPG Dark Cloud was a commercial success for developer Level-5, so it makes sense that the team would return for a sequel. Released as Dark Chronicle in Japan, Dark Cloud 2 was a spiritual successor to the original game, launching in Japan in 2002 and other major territories in 2003. Despite opting for all-new characters and a completely different setting, the PlayStation 2 exclusive nevertheless managed to be quite an improvement over its predecessor.
Like the first game, Dark Cloud 2 was an action RPG with procedurally generated dungeons and a healthy dose of town-building. As players made their way through the adventure, they would be asked to collect geostones, which could then be used to create things like houses, trees, bodies of water, and more in their attempt to rebuild a world under siege by an evil Emperor. As similar as the game was to the original, though, it diverged greatly in its visuals, opting for a considerably more colorful cel-shaded art style that gave it a genuinely unique appearance at the time.
Dark Cloud 2 was received quite well by critics, earning it a spot on a variety of Game of the Year lists. Most reviewers praised the game’s vibrant visuals and its myriad of gameplay upgrades that made working through the game considerably more fluid and efficient than the original. Sadly, though rumors of a third game made the rounds during the mid-2000s, the franchise ultimately ended with Dark Cloud 2 and hasn’t been revived since. Perhaps someday we’ll see another entry in this underrated series, but for now, you’ll have to make do with the only two entries to ever see the light of day.
Where You Can Play It Now
The only way to play Dark Cloud 2 on modern consoles is by downloading the emulated version available on PlayStation 4. Of course, it can also be played via backward compatibility on PlayStation 5.
Here are the modern platforms on which you can play Dark Cloud 2:
- PlayStation 4
- PlayStation 5
Once you’ve wrapped up Dark Cloud 2, you’ll have played the final game in the two-game franchise. You can always check out the original title on PS4, too, if you haven’t already. As with its sequel, it’s playable on PlayStation 5 thanks to backward compatibility.