''Digital Devil Story: Megami Tensei II'' is, as the name suggests, the sequel to ''Megami Tensei'' for the [[{{NintendoEntertainmentSystem}} Famicom]]. Despite being a direct sequel to the events of the first game, it has little to nothing to do with the original ''Literature/DigitalDevilStory'' plotline, and in fact closer resembles, and likely inspired, the ''Franchise/ShinMegamiTensei'' games that followed it.

In the year 199X, the world thrown into nuclear war and Tokyo was hit by a missile strike. During the resulting chaos, a horde of demons from Makai managed to launch an invasion of the human world, pretty much conquering it. Cut 35 years later, where various demon lords fight it out for control of Tokyo, and humanity struggles to survive in the ruins of the city and the bomb shelters where they fled years before. In one such bomb shelter, a young man and his friend come across the sealed demon Pazuzu while playing a mysterious game known as "Devil Busters". Pazuzu, claiming to be a servant of God, declares the two as the Messiahs who will save humanity from the demons and grants one with the Demon Summoning Program that will allow him to talk to, and recruit, the demons, and teaches the other magic. Shortly afterwards, however, the bomb shelter is attacked by demons and the two are thrust out into the ruined, demon infested world.

The game follows three primary human characters. None of the characters are given official names, and [[{{HelloInsertNameHere}} must be named by the player]].

* Hero: The HeroicMime protagonist. A resident of Bomb Shelter No. 3, he was given the Devil Summoning Program by Pazuzu in order to combat the demons. His actions will determine the ultimate fate of the world.
* Friend: [[{{ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin}} The hero's friend.]] Proud, pushy, and selfish, he easily buys into Pazuzu's claims and the praise of the Messians. When the hero sides with the heroine against Pazuzu, the friend will leave. The friend will eventually transform into the Dark Hero, the game's primary rival character.
* Partner: The hero's main companion. Originally a witch working for Pazuzu, she realized she was simply being used by him and hid in the ruined Tokyo Tower, where she protected the people living nearby. Joins with the hero after revealing to him Pazuzu's true intentions, and stays with him throughout the game, regardless of the path he takes.

Like its predecessor and successors, ''Megami Tensei II'' is a first person dungeon crawler using a turn based battle system, and the bulk of the player's party will be made of demons who they recruited. However, demons cannot level up on their own, and must be fused together to form stronger demons. Unlike the map and cursor overworld used by later games, there is a full overworld between dungeons, complete with overworld sprites for the three human party members. Like most main ''Shin Megami Tensei'' games, the game ends if both human party members are killed.

During the era of the ''Franchise/ShinMegamiTensei'' sequels, the game was remade alongside the first game as ''Kyuuyaku Megami Tensei'' for the [[{{SuperNintendo}} Super Famicom]]. Aside from graphical updating, the remake introduced several new demons.

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!! This game provides examples of:
* AfterTheEnd
* AlasPoorVillain: [[spoiler: The Dark Hero's death is treated as a somber event, despite him trying to kill you several times.]] Before he dies, he tells you that the real enemy or the "true enemy," resides in Makai. In response, the Hero places the Soloman Ring on his finger and leaves.
* AnArmAndALeg: The hero loses one of his arms in a trap while attempting to get one of the Seven Pillars, and has to get it replaced with a [[ArtificialLimbs robotic arm]] that also serves as the COMP upgrade of the game. The missing arm is even reflected in game as a status ailment that deals continuous damage to the hero and prevents the player from using the COMP.
* ApocalypseHow: Class 2.
* TheApunkalypse: Many of the enemies in the Kyojin (Psycho) clan consist of punk rockers, heavy metal fans, and long haired bikers, all with incredibly dated appearances.
* AvengingTheVillain: [[spoiler: Before dying, YHVH claims that He is part of the Great Will, an entity that oversees ''multiple universes'' and boasts that He will be avenged by an even higher power than Himself.]]
* BadassNormal: The non-magic-using hero, as is the ''Megami Tensei'' tradition.
* BigBad: [[spoiler: YHVH.]]
** BiggerBad: [[spoiler: The Great Will and the other potential YHVH-level beings from other universes if YHVH is to be believed.]]
* [[spoiler:BittersweetEnding: The Good Ending, where the Hero and the Partner return to the ruined world with the demons gone after defeating YHVH. However, with his last breaths, YHVH claims that the Great Will will avenge Him.]]
* BoringButPractical: The Kuchinawa Sword. It has low attack power, around 6, but can hit multiple times and doesn't sap your HP like the Nihil Blade. Chances are you'll hang onto the Kuchinawa Sword until you get to Makai.
* BodyHorror: After his transformation into the Dark Hero, the Friend is hooked up to an uncomfortable organic looking armor.
* ButThouMust: A cruel variation in the original Famicom version: Rejecting the Partner means she attacks you and kills you, being much stronger than she is when she joins your party.
** If you grind or cheat to kill her, she just reappears!
* CallBack: Devil Busters, the first "dungeon" of the game, is a recreation of the first town and dungeon from the previous game. At the end of the (main) game, it is revealed that it was programmed by [[Literature/DigitalDevilStory Akemi Nakajima]], the previous game's protagonist.
* CampGay: The guys running the Men's Armor stores. All of them. Even the ones in Makai!
* CastFromHitPoints: The Nihil Blade and the Deathblade are incredibly powerful at the points in the game when you get them (some are even able to clear the game using Deathblades), but they will inflict Curse status on you, causing you to lose 1 HP per step.
* CosyCatastrophe: While the nuclear strike in 199X wrecked the overworld and submerged a good chunk of Tokyo, those who made it to Shelter #3 don't have it all that bad (ignoring the fact that except for the main characters, they can't go outside). They're stocked with weapons, they have access to a working bar and some kind of regular food source. There's also a security force [[spoiler: although Nebiros makes quick work of them.]]
** Those who don't live in shelters are forced to find refuge from demons in dilapidated buildings. However, these survivors still manage to carry on fashion trends (see TheApunkalypse), are free to pursue religion (Order of the Messiah or Deva Cult) and there are many thriving shops, bars, casinos. On the other hand, [[spoiler: the Good Ending seems to make a big deal about overworld survivors being able to use electricity again, meaning they've essentially been stuck in the Dark Ages for twenty or thirty-something years.]]
* CoolBoat: Mora sort of works like this, ferrying you from place to place in exchange for Talismans and food.
* CorruptCorporateExecutive: Mr. Suzuki, who is actually [[spoiler:Satan in disguise]].
* CrapsackWorld
* CrutchCharacter: Naga, Atlas, Cerberus to name a few.
* CrystalDragonJesus: Like later games, the Messians are Judeo-Christan in everything but name.
* DemotedToExtra: The Messians and Deva Cult (renamed the Gaians in later games), compared to later games. A representative from each faction shows up exactly once each during the course of the game, with the rest of their activities being mentioned in passing by other characters.
* [[{{DidYouJustPunchOutCthulhu}} Did You Just Punch Out YHVH?]]: If you go for the Good ending, you'll be given this opportunity.
* DiscOneFinalDungeon: Bael's Cathedral.
* [[{{DiscOneFinalDungeon}} Disc Two Final Dungeon]]: Lucifer's Temple.
* DiscOneNuke: The Nihil Blade can be obtained from Ueno somewhat early on. It saps your HP, but it does enough damage that as soon as you get it, you can defeat [[{{ThatOneBoss}} Tiamat.]] However, you may want to keep the Nihil Blade in your inventory instead of using it.
** More of a [[{{DiscOneNuke}} Disc Two Nuke]] but if you're at level 52 and you have Undine, Slyph and Salamander, you can triple fuse them to summon the Angel Michael, who can be obtained right before you travel to Makai and remains useful until the end of the game.
* TheDragon: Two of them. Belphegor to Satan and Satan to YHVH, with the latter being a better example, right down to Satan being a more difficult boss fight than [[{{BigBad}} YHVH.]]
* DualWielding: Subverted. Human characters can wield a SwordAndGun at the same time, but can only use one weapon or the other per turn in battle.
* EleventhHourRanger: [[spoiler: Lucifer]] can be this to your team, if you meet the requirements to have him join your party. Baal and Ahura Mazda qualify too.
* EvilLaugh: Some demons that can't be communicated with simply reply "kururururu," if you try to talk to them. Eerily, some humans will too.
* EvolvingWeapon: The Nihil Blade will become the Hinokagutsuchi if you still have it and [[spoiler: Lucifer]] decides to join your party.
* FetchQuest: Three of them! Gathering the Four Talismans to get around Tokyo, then Seven Pillars to enter Makai, then gathering the jewels needed to actually get around Makai and reach Lucifer's Temple.
* FusionDance: Aside from the regular method of fusing demons, if you spared Bael earlier in the game, he will fuse with Beelzebub and form Baal. Recruiting Baal is required in order to recruit [[spoiler: Lucifer]] and get the game's "good" ending.
* [[{{ShowWithinAShow}} Game Within A Game]]: Devil Busters.
* GodIsEvil: And the TrueFinalBoss, predating ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiII''. [[spoiler:Unlike the other games, where he wants to enslave humanity in a Thousand Year Kingdom, this time he just wants to kill them all.]]
* GiantSpaceFleaFromNowhere: Zaratan Island, despite not being the final boss, just pops out of nowhere to give the player [[{{ThatOneLevel}} an extra random obstacle]] in trying to get to Bael's Castle.
* GratuitousEnglish: Some of the human random encounters use the word "death," spelled in lowercase letters to make a threat towards you, if you try to talk to them.
* HarmlessFreezing: Aside from the regular status ailment, [[spoiler: Lucifer is frozen during the first half of the game, presumably sealed by Nakajima after the events of the first game. He gets better.]]
* ImpaledWithExtremePrejudice: Naga has been impaled upon the Kuchinawa Sword when you find her. When you remove the sword, you'll be able to take it with you and Naga will join your party.
* InexplicableTreasureChests: Bright gold ones, too! In a post-apocalyptic 202X, no less! And in Makai too!
* InfinityMinusOneSword: The Vajra and the Muramasa. The former is dropped by Belphegor if you fight him in Makai and is basically a watered down version of Lucifer's Sword. Meanwhile the Muramasa is dropped by a random encounter in Belial's castle (the second Makai dungeon) and is essentially the Hinokagutsuchi if it were half as strong.
** Even after they've been replaced by the InfinityPlusOneSword, both swords are still somewhat useful. The Vajra is the strongest sword for the partner. Meanwhile the Muramasa is a common drop from a weak enemy and can be sold for a very high price in shops.
* InfinityPlusOneSword: Several. There's Lucifer's Sword, which requires an intelligence level of 20/21 to wield and the Hinokagutsuchi, which requires you speak to [[spoiler: Lucifer]] while you have the Nihil Blade in your inventory. There's also the Meggido Fire which can only be obtained before the final boss fight (see below).
* IJustWantToBeSpecial/IJustWantToBeBadass: The Friend/Dark Hero is convinced that he (and initially, the Hero) are the saviors of Messian legend. Even though Pazuzu is clearly using him, he opts to fight in his name no matter what.
* LastDiscMagic: Lucifer's Sword. The only drawback is that the Hero must have an intelligence level of 20 (21 in Kyuuyaku) to wield it. The Megiddo Fire is the best gun available, but can only be found right before the final battle. Subverted with Lucifer's Armor, which can be obtained in the middle of the game, but requires a near maxed out strength stat (that one would likely have at the end of the game) to wield.
* LazyBackup: Somewhat justified. If both human characters die, the battle is over, presumably because no one will be left to work the COMP and control the demons.
* TheManBehindTheMan: [[spoiler:Satan, not Lucifer, is behind the demon invasion and the nuclear war that predated it, but he was doing so under YHVH's orders.]]
* MonsterArena: Which you need to complete to obtain a pillar. It's also a good way of making some quick money too.
* MultipleEndings: 3 endings: 2 variations of the same bad ending, and one "good" ending. ''Kyuuyaku'' adds one more, which is, again, a variation of the bad ending.
* NoExportForYou: And no completed fan-translation either, so unless you read Japanese or feel like scouting out a translated guide (or finding a Japanese FAQ and running it through Google Translate), good luck getting around an already hard game!
* NukeEm: As part of the back story.
* OhMyGods: Averted by [[spoiler: YHVH of all people. Upon being defeated, YHVH cries out なんてことだ!nante koto da!) While the phrase indicates shock, it's also considered the Japanese equivalent of taking the Lord's name in vain. May double as a StealthPun.]]
* OldSaveBonus: In the ''Kyuuyaku'' version, continuing on from a completed ''Megami Tensei'' file with certain side quests done will add several events to this game.
** These events include encounters with Mama and Papa Jack Frost, access to one of four secret demons based on ClassicalMythology, Izanami weaving you an item to block trap and swamp damage, and a new area in Ginza known as the Trash Mountain.
* OnlyInItForTheMoney / PunchClockHero: Some demons will join your side -- for a steep price with some even asking for triple donations!
** Even if a demon joins you and is logged in the COMP, they all require an additional donation (from hundreds to thousands of Makka) before they'll be added to your party! On top of that, they'll also consume Magnetite for every step you take while they're summoned.
* PhysicalGod: [[spoiler: If you betray Lucifer at the end of the game or you have the friend in your party, YHVH essentially bribes you with godhood.]]
* RandomEncounters
* TheRival: The Hero's friend after his transformation into the Dark Hero.
** RivalTurnedEvil: Though he technically never changed sides.
* SatanIsGood: Well, Satan is still evil, but [[spoiler: Lucifer]] is treated as the game's BigGood if you unlocked the requirements to recruit him.
* {{Snowlems}}: This game is where Jack Frost, {{Atlus}}' [[SeriesMascot mascot]], made his debut (albeit with a very different appearance than he has now. This was slightly corrected in the remake, however).
* SoLongAndThanksForAllTheGear: When the Friend bails on you, he'll take with him [[spoiler: the Soloman Ring, Orthus and half your cash!]]
* StandardStatusEffects: You've got classics like Poison, Paralyze, Sleep, Bind, Confuse and Seal (which works like Silence), but also Cursed (which works more like a traditional Poison effect), Happy (which causes the afflicted member to randomly ignore commands) and Panic (a status that paralyzes the hero if he's threatened by an enemy).
* StarterEquipment: Two Walther P.P.K.'s, one for you, one for your friend.
* TakenForGranite: Atlas, but he gets better.
* TrademarkFavoriteFood: The Dainty Dinner for Mora. It's the only way to get him to ferry you around Makai.
** There's a man in the Village of The Flies who requires a food item known as the Gorgeous Set.
* TookALevelInBadass: The Friend, after being transformed into the Dark Hero, appears to have done this. He wields a katana, has Super Saiyan-esque blond hair, red eyes and a grotesque organic looking purple armor that's wired into him! [[spoiler: Subverted in that his ambushes on you always fail and he gets himself killed by the game's DiscOneFinalBoss Bael.]]
* VoluntaryShapeshifter: Upon being defeated [[spoiler: Bael transforms himself into a frog]] which you must take if you hope to recruit [[spoiler: Lucifer.]]
* WhatCouldHaveBeen: The Dark Hero was supposed to be a boss fought during the player's trip to the Suzuki Company, hence his boss data and incredibly high stats. Also, Yumiko from the original ''Megami Tensei'' (now an old woman) was supposed to make a cameo in an unknown capacity according to a magazine preview.
** Dr. Bhakuta from the Ginza underpass was intended to be an enemy according to screenshot from a Japanese website.
* WhatHappenedToTheMouse: In the ''Kyuuyaku'' version, you don't have to accept the Partner as your partner, you can side with Orthus and your friend. However, she runs off.
** This also poses several questions: how the repeated fights against the Dark Hero (the friend's transformed state) are handled, if they even occur at all, if he even transforms himself, if the Partner ever shows up later or if anyone else is killed by Bael in the Dark Hero's stead. You do never clash with Pazuzu, you only have to fight Mammon. [[spoiler: Siding with your friend also seems to lock you in for the game's bad ending, though.]]
** You start in Shelter #3, but no other Shelters are visited or even mentioned.
* WhiteMagicianGirl: Played with the Partner, who fits the personality type but is more of a [[TheRedMage Red Mage]]. However, she will be your most reliable healer throughout the game, (until you obtain Baal) despite her offensive abilities.