Enter the Protagonist. He or She has entered into Demonaica's ranks, and through all sorts of training and cruelty, has gained the trust of thier evil peers and the Overlord himself, enough to have an Oblivion Crystal bestowed upon them. With this, s/he immediately slips out of the castle via an air vent, and begins to lead a resistance against the Overlord now that they are on even footing, with the ultimate goal of destroying the source of the Oblivion Crystals' power and defeating Demonaica.
The gameplay of the game can best be described as a combination of a Metroid Vania game and a TBS game — Actraiser is probably the closest comparison. You have to manage your resistance fighters on the overworld map to make sure they can continue to fight. If all of your resistance fighters die, you immediately lose. In the action stages of the game, you need to destroy Storm Generators to move further into the Fog of War, raid Robotic Research Facilities to obtain new abilities, find and explore Level Up Windmills to do exactly that, and routinely visit Demonaica's Castle to steal new spellbooks.
The game relies a lot of random generation of game aspects. It changes the world every time, it changes the distribution and power of spells (there are 50 different spellbooks, and the power of the 25 chosen is randomised — Weak Tier 1 spells in one game could be extremely powerful Tier 5 spells in another), and the general level designs can be randomised to an extent.
A Valley Without Wind 2 provides examples of:
- Anachronism Stew: Not as blatant as the first game, but still exists, especially with the Robotic Research Facilities right next to grassy, dragon-filled plains.
- Anti-Villain: Demonaica's lieutenants.
- Artifact Title: Wind is still present, as is the mechanic of purifying the land by stopping it, but it's lost most of its thematic significance since the focus is now on fighting an Evil Overlord.
- Big Bad: Demonaica.
- The Blank: Elder.
- Breakable Equipment
- Card-Carrying Villain: Wordrak brags about his evil nature, and taunts you for the things you had to do to gain Demonaica's trust.
- Cast From Hitpoints: The "Reckless ___" spells, though they're not really any more powerful than the other ammo-costing spells to justify it.
- Continuing Is Painful: While you don't die permanently, dying means you'll lose morale (along with any equipment you had), which makes your survivors more likely to take damage and die. However, the penalty is quite small and you gain morale for lots of things, and it's capped anyways, so as long as you have enough food you're probably fine. The death penalty becomes significantly higher near the end of the game. When the Oblivion Crystal is destroyed, you gain a different source of your immortality: your resistance members. The closest ones to you take 3 hp of damage each. This can kill them if you're not careful.
- Convection Schmonvection: Averted. Both cold and hot areas cause significant damage. You can temporarily prevent this with appropriate equipment, or permanently by purifying the Heat or Cold dispersal towers.
- Embedded Precursor: If you buy the game, you also get the first game for free.
- Everything's Better with Dinosaurs: Just like in the previous game, you will eventually get the ability to transform into a dinosaur, at least if you get the right class. And just like in the first game, the lava region is filled with dinosaurs.
- Glass Cannon: The Risk Taker perk increases damage taken and dealt by a certain percentage. Many pieces of equipment do too, usually with a better ratio.
- Heart Is an Awesome Power: Spell schools like Lumbermancy and Featherology may not sound particularly impressive, but depending on where they get put in a given game, they can be devastatingly effective.
- If You're So Evil, Eat This Kitten: It's implied that Demonaica's training was part this, part Training from Hell.
- Incendiary Exponent: Invoked by the description of equipment of self-immolation (which gives huge bonuses, but also sets you on fire).
- Immortality: The Oblivion Crystal protects you — and the other holders of them — from death.
- Leaning on the Fourth Wall: Happens constantly when in the tutorial segments and when talking about new gameplay elements.
- Level Scaling: Sort of. Actually leveling up or obtaining new feats doesn't have any downside and you're encouraged to level up as soon as it's available. Instead enemies get stronger as time passes—every turn makes all enemies everywhere a little bit stronger.
- The Man Behind the Man: Elder
- The Mole: You. You're a resistance agent sent to get chummy with Demonaica, to gain access to the Immortality-granting Oblivion Crystal. After you get access to it, you immediately escape his service and use the power against him.
- Not So Different: Pointed out by the henchman Wordrak—you had to be completely amoral to pretend to be loyal to Demonaica, not unlike him.
- Orcus on His Throne: Averted, unlike the first game. After a varying amount of turns (On the easiest setting he waits for many turns, but at the highest he's on your heels almost instantly) Demonaica will eventually come out of his fortress and start undoing your progress in purifying the land. He can permanently destroy buildings, casts big spells every couple turns, and if he touches any of your resistance fighters, they die instantly.
- Player Nudge: Just in case you didn't read the description on the overworld which explicitly tells you if certain powerups are required in a certain region, the beginning of each has a gravestone/sign telling you you can't progress without it. Signs also occasionally warn you when a chasm is supposed to be impossible to cross and you need to detour through a building. Meanwhile, as turns progress one of your survivors will give you tips about things you should be doing at about the time the developers thought each one becomes important.
- Quirky Miniboss Squad: The other lietenants, who you'll fight often.
- Training from Hell: Demonaica's training, interspersed with If You're So Evil, Eat This Kitten.
- Unstable Equilibrium: The Concentration system makes your attacks much more powerful (double damage or more) and better at stopping or bypassing enemy bullets. All you have to do is not take any hits at all, even from trivial sources that hurt you a tenth of a heart, while killing many enemies to advance it. Potentially valuable equipment is also lost once you take enough damage.
- Unwinnable by Design: A badly timed save can easily put you into an unwinnable situation, but you can make backups of your saves.