When a young elf named Iya is captured by the Snow Queen, it’s up to her friend Ean to come to the rescue. Can they stop the Snow Queen from turning the world into ice?
Despite what it sounds like, rescuing Iya is only the beginning of the game. Plus, it’s Iya discovering her magic that allows them to escape in the first place. The rest of the story is about restoring Iya to normal and defeating the Snow Queen. Another thing is that the two elves live in a place cut off from the rest of the world called the Vale. Unlike in other stories, where the main character dreams of leaving their small town to explore the rest of the world, Ean and Iya are perfectly happy in the Vale. If it weren’t for the Snow Queen, they would have stayed there. Emma and Rye are the ones that want to leave their home and dream of something greater. Yes, there are other characters besides Ean and Iya and, like the last game, you can marry various characters. Ean has to buy things for Iya or have spells cast on the both of them. Emma has to win or lose a tournament while making a bet with Rye. Ava can either marry Gavin or teach Nicholas humility depending on which one you’d rather have in your party. If you want both, go to Amaranth Games and check out the goodies they have for this one. Oh, and you can also choose between three endings, even though one of them doesn’t actually have an ending.
Unlike the last game where they had a tendency to force pairings, this one actually manages to give them chemistry with the exception of one. Ean and Iya have been friends for years and there are hints throughout the story that they care for each other a great deal. Emma and Rye are both commoners who want more from life than what they have. They also have a competitive streak that causes them to insult each other and place a bet when Emma signs up for a tournament regarding servitude. To me, this pairing is the most believable because of their natures. My only problem is that Rye says that Emma’s not like other girls who are boring and sappy. I get that there probably weren’t many deep women in Rye’s farming village, but he also travels with Iya and Ava. Ava is a no nonsense pirate who shouldn’t be messed with and while Iya is more girly than the other two, she knows where her priorities lie. One example is that when Iya and Ean are fleeing from the Snow Queen, though Iya loves her Snow Princess gown, she knows that it’s hard to travel in and that there’s no room for it in her pack so she throws it away. This is a breath of fresh air from Cassandra Claire’s Draco Trilogy where even when the women were in a life-threatening situation, the minute they got a new dress that was their number one priority. As I said earlier, Ava has two paths she can take. Truth is, I didn’t find her relationship with Gavin believable. During the game, he makes advances that she is constantly rejecting and then he makes an offer out of nowhere that makes her like him. She refuses, but I wonder if he knew she was going to turn him down. I also love Nicholas’s storyline where he is rude and conceited yet he sees the consequences of his actions with the help of Ava. Like Lars, he sees the error of his ways and learns humility. Unlike Lars, we are not meant to take the writer’s word for it and actually witness his transformation. His relationship with Ava is far more believable than her marriage to Gavin but I don’t think Nicholas is a better match for her. Ava and Nicholas’s relationship seems more like an older sibling teaching her younger brother how to behave than that of boyfriend and girlfriend.
The game play is like the last one where you travel the world fighting monsters and leveling up your characters. You can also partake in events that give certain characters attraction points and buy a farm that can be your party’s headquarters. If you want an easy play through, you can find several goodie caves throughout the game. You can also sign Iya up for one of four guilds and get a new outfit based on which one of them you choose.
This game is addictive and has more of a storyline. I give it 8 out of 10; a superior sequel to the last game.