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Video Game / Ys II: Ancient Ys Vanished – The Final Chapter

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Due to its Immediate Sequel status, this page assumes you have played Ys: Ancient Ys Vanished ~ Omen, hence there are spoilers for that game.
Click here  to see Ys Book I & II
Click here  to see Ys I & II Chronicles

Ys II: Ancient Ys Vanished - The Final Chapter is the direct Action RPG Sequel to Ys: Ancient Ys Vanished ~ Omen, released on April 22, 1988, developed and published by Falcom. Ys II retains all of the game-play and combat mechanics of the previous game, while adding in magic spells that can be used via wands.

Following the Cliffhanger ending of Ys, Adol Christin is immediately transported to the titular Floating Continent that once held the "Ancient Kingdom of Ys". The secrets from both games would be revealed here, including the identity of the twin goddesses of Ys, the extinct "Eldeen" civilization they once belonged to, and the motivations behind the "Clan of Darkness", who not only serve as recurring antagonists throughout the franchise but form the Myth Arc of the series.

Like its predecessor, Ys II was first released on the PC-8801, but was also ported to multiple computers and home consoles such as the PC98, MSX2, Famicom, all exclusive to Japan. However, both titles were given a Video Game Remake for the TurboGrafx-CD as Ys I & II, developed by Alfa System and published by Hudson Soft. Released on December 21, 1989, I & II feature improved visuals, animated cutscenes, and a Red Book CD audio soundtrack. This iteration would also be released in North America as Ys Book I & II in 1990, becoming one of the first Japanese video games to be dubbed into English in the process. In 1994, Ys II received a South Korean-exclusive Video Game Remake on MS-DOS as Ys II Special.

Due in part to the nature of the first game's ending and the second game's reliance on it, standalone re-releases of II past the 80's are few and far-between. However, the Ys I & II package would be re-released numerous times as a bundle on different modern platforms over the years:

  • Ys Eternal (PC): A 1997 Japan-exclusive for Microsoft Windows, Eternal has updated graphics and complete animated sequences in contrast to the animated stills from Ys I & II.
    • Ys I & II Complete (PC): Another Japan-exclusive, Complete launched on June 28, 2001, for Windows with further enhanced visuals and full-motion video sequences.
  • Ys I & II: Eternal Story (PlayStation 2): Based on Complete, this Japan-only port released on August 7, 2003 added in new characters and items alongside improvements. Eternal Story was developed by DigiCube instead of Alfa System.
  • Legacy of Ys: Books I & II (Nintendo DS): Initially released separately in Japan as Ys DS and Ys II DS on March 20, 2008, both games were developed by Dreams and got a comprehensive bundle as Ys DS/Ys II DS Special Box on April 18. Meanwhile, Legacy is the name of the North American bundle, published by Atlus and released on February 24, 2009. This remake has 3D graphics, updated sound effects and in a franchise first, supports Competitive Multiplayer for up to four people.
  • Ys I & II Chronicles (PlayStation Portable): Widely seen as the "definitive" version of Ys and Ys II (since Falcom returns as the sole developer), Chronicles is based on Complete and was released on July 16, 2009, with XSEED Games localizing and publishing for a North America release on February 22, 2011; Europe would receive it a day later only on PlayStation Network. Upon starting a new game, players can choose between two different game modes, which will display character portraits from Complete or entirely new art created for Chronicles; likewise, the soundtrack can be changed at any time during play, between the PC-8801 release, Complete or an entirely re-arranged instrumental soundtrack for Chronicles.
    • Ys I & II Chronicles+ (PC): An improved version released in North America and Europe on February 14, 2013 through Steam.

Ys II and the many compilations have the following examples:

  • Abandoned Mine: Rasteenie Mine, an old mine rich in iron ore that was sealed off due to an increase in monster attacks.
  • Absurdly-Spacious Sewer: The canal below Solomon Shire, which also has a hideout for the humans.
  • Adaptational Skimpiness: Zalem's outfit is already revealed in the PC-88 version and versions of the game with it, the Ys II Special version released in South Korea gives her a bikini top that has no bridge over the cleavage and the neckline extends to her midriff.
  • Adaptation Dye-Job: In most versions of Ys II, Zalem has either blue or black hair. In Ys II Special, she has blonde hair.
  • Artificial Brilliance: Higher level demons will sometimes actively dodge when Adol comes charging in to attack in the Steam, PSP, iOS, and Android versions of Ys II.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: The life drop in the TurboGrafx-CD version of Ys II. It allows you to resurrect yourself with full life and magic if you get killed while this is equipped. On the early bosses when you could really use this because they could One-Hit Kill or seriously hurt Adol, it is too expensive at 60,000 gold. When you can finally afford it, you have leveled up enough that most bosses at this stage other than Darm are no threat if you are a good player. Against Darm, you must have the Goddess's Ring equipped or you will get quickly killed because his attacks are too fast to dodge without the ring, so you cannot have the life drop equipped. If you have the life drop equipped in this battle, you will get killed twice very quickly. The Steam version allows you to equip one item that generates a constant effect while equipped and one consumable, so both the Goddess's Ring and the elixir (as it is known in this version instead of the life drop) can be equipped.
  • Back for the Finale: Some ally NPCs returns just before the final battle, including characters from the first game.
  • Ball of Light Transformation: Ys II:
    • At the beginning, Adol assumes this form during his flight from Darm Tower to Ys.
    • The goddesses do this when they Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence at the end, leaving their physical forms behind as statues.
  • Beef Gate: Velagunder, the first boss. You can try to fight it anytime, but without Fire magic, it's impossible to win.
  • The Blacksmith: Ys II features a blacksmith who is initially out of work because he is out of iron ore. The mine that has some iron ore is full of demons, so the miners require good armor and weapons to kill the demons to mine. Unfortunately, the armor and weapons shop has only weak armor that is too weak for the miners who are not master swordsmen to survive due to the lack of iron ore needed to make the iron that the armor requires to be made. Furthermore, Velagunder, a giant demon, guards the iron ore in the mine. This demon is vulnerable only to fire magic and is invulnerable to physical attacks in this game. Adol has to go into the mine with a sword, a shield, the ability to use Ys's magic, and weak armor to kill Velagunder and to get the iron ore to break this cycle.
  • Bond Villain Stupidity: Instead of just petrifying Adol, Dalles rather turn him into a monster. Even after that fails, he still prefers to petrify his friends, but leave Adol alone to torment him with guilty.
  • Boss in Mook Clothing: The two demon guards from the entrance of Solomon Shrine. They can only be hurt by the Cleria Sword, and even so, they're tougher than any other non-boss enemy in the game and can still kill Adol if you're careless.
  • Bowdlerise:
    • In the North American TurboGrafx-CD version, the fortune teller Sara from Ys I was strongly implied to have died as the antagonists discovered she knew too much about their plans, so she writes a letter to tell Adol the details before she's found. In the localization, she was said to be kidnapped, leading to a What Happened to the Mouse? situation as she's still never accounted for in any enemy strongholds. The Turbo-Grafx only version of Ys IV, The Dawn of Ys, would later explain that she fled the country to escape from Dark Fact and then returned between games.
    • Zalem wears Stripperific clothing in the original PC-8801 version but was given a conservative robe for the North American TurboGrafx-CD version.
  • Broken Bridge: There is one in the Colony of Lava. It isn't really broken though, but the gatekeeper's son was kidnapped by demons, so Adol has to rescue the kid before proceeding.
  • Canon Foreigner: Ys II Special adds Aisha and Arisa who did not appear in the original game.
  • Canon Immigrant: Several characters and locations hinted at in manuals or introduced in the OVA made their way into the games proper with the release of Ys Eternal.
  • Clean Dub Name: Falcom's internal Romanization of "roo" is "loo", but these funny animals are not toilets so most English localizations translate this word into "roo". Hudson Soft's localization of the TurboGrafx-CD version changes this to "quay".
  • Drone of Dread: "Pressure Road", the music for the final area in Ys II, especially in the Chronicles version. The fact that it's more cacophony than music makes it unsettling enough but because this is a series known for its vibrant soundtracks...
  • Early Game Hell: A low-level Adol with basic equipment can die to regular enemies incredibly fast, and is even required to dash through danger without any equipment just to hope to gear up in later releases. Once you get a couple levels under your belt, the games swiftly shift their momentum to the dungeons, and especially the bosses, being the real challenge.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: The American TG-16 release of Ys I & II referred to Dogi as "Colin". Subsequent North American releases of the franchise ignored the change.
  • Evil Sorceror: Dalles and Zava are two wizards from the Clan of Darkness who command monsters and use dark magic to petrify humans.
  • Fantastic Racism: Downplayed; in the Chronicles version, most people are scared of Adol when he is transformed into a roo because roos are intelligent non-human beings, yet a few of the older people recognize roos as not demons and treat him nicely when he is a roo.
  • The Fourth Wall Will Not Protect You: In the Turbografx-CD version of Ys II, Darm's portrait is forward-facing and takes up the entirety of the game screen, making it look like he's speaking directly to the player.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation: Even if you use Time Magic, Adol will still fail to reach the top of the bell tower in time to prevent Maria from being sacrificed by Dalles.
  • Guide Dang It!
    • Many achievements in the Steam version have vague descriptions:
      • No Reservations: In Ys II, there are four non-player characters who will give you food if you give them enough gifts. Some are hinted at because they raise animals, but one of them is a blacksmith and is never hinted to give you anything.
      • Bill the Duck: You must give gifts to a non-player character (once again, there are absolutely no hints as to which one this is) until he tells you that sometimes the ducks eat gold coins. Now you can examine the ducks outside and one of them will give you gold and the achievement.
      • Where's Aldow: You must use the Alter spell and return to the first dungeon, in the area where you found the Evil Bell. One monster will give you the achievement if you talk to him.
    • In the first game, Goban tells you that the Mask of Eyes allows you to see hidden passages. In the TurboGrafx-CD version, there are the hints of "I saw that blue statue's eyes glow" and the outline of a doorway, but in other versions, there's nothing remotely hinting at the hidden doorway in the shrine basement. The Steam, PlayStation Portable and smartphone versions will draw slight defects in the lighting of the illusionary walls in the mountain shrine, but those defects are so subtle that they could be easily overlooked and could probably be completely lost if the display in use is of poor quality like a monitor that uses a 6 bit per color channel panel. The illusory wall in Darm Tower has no visual defects, but Dogi will give Adol a clue to look for Raba in the hallway next to where he is hiding when he breaks Adol out of the dungeon cell.
    • The smartphone versions of Ys I show you a couple of pictures that vaguely suggest that you must run into enemies' sides or back to land clean hits. There is nothing to let you know that you can also get clean hits by running into the sides of their fronts. Unfortunately, the smartphone versions of Ys II are worse by not providing any tutorial whatsoever on how to physically attack enemies. Someone who never played the first game would be left clueless on how to attack at all.
  • Healing Spring: Ramia Villager has a well whose waters fully recover Adol's HP and MP.
  • 100% Heroism Rating: In Eternal and Complete, Adol could give gifts to every villager he meets. While this has little impact on the gameplay, there are some perks as few villagers can give good healing items or interesting information when Adol maxes out their likeness.
  • Interface Spoiler: If you go from the first game to the second, the fact that there's equipable magic items and, in Chronicles, a separate "Magic" slot added to your HUD gives away the fact that you'll get to use spells of some sort compared to before.
  • Invincibility Power-Up: The Shield Magic turns Adol invincible, but gradually drains his MP.
  • Katanas Are Just Better: The TurboGrafx-16 version of Ys I is called the "Talwarl the Katana". It's the best weapon that money can buy (though there are still two better swords that money can't buy).
  • Laughably Evil: In Ys II, the non-boss demons have some funny, sometimes fourth wall-leaning lines if you talk to them while using Alter magic. Otherwise, they'll attack you on the spot.
  • Lethal Lava Land: Moat of Burnedbless, a fire cavern that also has a human settlement called the Colony of Lava.
  • Light 'em Up: Light Magic, a passive spell used to discover hidden passageways.
  • The Magic Goes Away: The destruction of the Black Pearl leads to the magic disappearing from Ys with the floating continent's coming back down.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Zalem, the female weapon shop owner in Ramia Village. She basically wears a bikini and a long scarf/sash around her shoulders, and acts in a very flirtatious manner, greeting Adol with "Don't be shy. Feel free to look, touch and even try on for size!" Despite her not being a story-relevant character in any way, her bed is one of three you have to sleep in to get the "Juuuuust Right" achievement (Adol describes her bed as being "warm and sinful") and, even though she stands with her back to a wall and never moves, they put a special secret mascot figure in the game of her facing away from the camera just so you can get to see the "backside" of her sprite. Ys II Special shows her in a midriff-baring strapless chest plate that has no bridge over her cleavage.
  • Mythology Gag: The Chronicles English localization has references to the TurboGrafx-CD version.
    • Jade will say that he used to sell herbs but has quit doing so in the English localization. Back in the TurboGrafx-CD version, he did sell herbs.
    • Zalem states that she was forced to wear thicker clothes when Ramia Village used to be colder. In the TurboGrafx-CD version, she wears a toga that is much more conservative than the original Japanese version due to Bowdlerisation, and Ramia Village is as icy as the Ice Ridge of Noltia. The weather is much more temperate in Chronicles.
  • One-Hit Kill: Velagunder in the TurboGrafx-CD version of Ys II can do this to Adol. This is the first boss, and one shot from this boss is enough to kill Adol. Fortunately, its shots are not too fast to be dodged. Killing this boss requires you to shoot this boss with fire magic when it is open to being attacked while dodging all shots from this boss.
  • Playing with Fire: Adol learns to use Fire Magic, allowing him to shoot fireballs.
  • Power Glows: In Ys Eternal, chests containing Silver items had a distinct blue glow around them.
  • Sequence Breaking: In Ys Eternal (but not in later versions) it was possible to get the Silver Armor while you were still at Level 1 by entering the Mine, running away from everything, and hoping you could get to the chest and back before something killed you. As the second-best armor in the game, it made the beginning much easier. Later versions removed this by requiring the Treasure Box Key to be obtained in the Shrine Depths before you could open the chest.
  • Shapeshifter Mode Lock: In Ys II, you acquire a spell that allows you to become a demon and talk to other demons. Late in the game, you are cursed into a Palette Swaped version of this form and cannot change back until you find the items necessary to break the curse. You also lose the ability to talk to monsters and most Non-Player Characters.
  • Sheep in Wolf's Clothing: Keith Fact in Ys II, who became a demon after his sister died. However, he uses his new strength to fight for humanity. This is explained in Ys Origin, which shows that his ancestor, Toal Fact, is fused with demon seeds, thus showing the origin of the "bad genes" in the family.
  • Shout-Out:
    • In the Chronicles version of Ys I, using the Rod (for the Darm Tower mirrors) as an item will result in Adol attempting to short-circuit the rest of the game by chanting "Accio Books of Ys". It doesn't work.
    • An achievement in the Steam version of Ys II uses an icon graphic styled to look like an 8-bit era text box. The text within reads "Fortune smiles upon thee!".
    • Hitting villagers with the fireball spell sometimes produces humorous commentary. One character will say "BARF". Another will say "Ouch! What do you do?"
    • A gravestone in the remakes of Ys II features the epitaph "Here lies Wiseau, the Favored Customer."
    • One of the demons that controls one of the gates in the Shrine of Solomon in Ys II requires a pass before it will raise the gate. It says "Passes, please." in the Steam version.
  • Single Line of Descent: The ending of Ys II implies that the six people (who are not Lilia and the Goddesses) who speak with Adol after Darm's defeat are the only people with the bloodline of the six Priests left after 700 years (which would also imply that Jevah Tovah died shortly after Adol entered Darm Tower, although she was shown to be still alive in Ys IV: Mask of the Sun and Ys IV: The Dawn of Ys). Justified by the fact that the demons were going out of their way to eliminate as many of the priests' descendants that they could find.
  • Slippy-Slidey Ice World: Ice Ridge of Noltia, an ice mountain filled with slippery ice stairs.
  • Spell My Name With An S: Between fan translations, multiple official translations, and Falcom's own official English names, there are few characters or places that don't fit this trope. An example would be the name of the crater in Esteria where Ys used to be before it rose into the sky. In the Atlus translation, it has the vaguely French-sounding name "Vageux-Vardette", but XSEED Games gives it the more unusual-sounding name "Bagyu Ba'dead". The English TG-16 version, on the other hand, refers to the crater as "Clifton's Cliff".
  • Stripperific: Zalem, the weapon shopkeeper in the original PC-8801 version of Ys II and ports and remakes that keep this outfit instead of Bowdlerising it.
  • Tactical Suicide Boss: If Gelaldy in Ys II did not keep opening its mouth, it would be invulnerable.
  • Time Master: Adol learns Time Magic, which paralyzes every enemy on the screen for a few seconds.
  • Uncanny Family Resemblance: Sara and Goban Tovah share their ancestor Yunica's hair color (and Jeba presumably had the same hair color before her hair turned gray), and Dark Fact had the same color hair as Hugo Fact before he ended up becoming more demonic (as seen in the artwork of him on XSEED Games' website for Chronicles, in which he is fully human).
  • Video Game Perversity Potential:
    • In the Steam version, there's an achievement for "measuring" Tarf. This time the achievement icon has a sign across the image saying "NO, I REFUSE TO DRAW THIS."
    • Also the "Juuuuust Right" achievement which you get for climbing into the (empty) beds of three different girls (Lilia, Maria, and Zalem the weapon store owner), leading to Adol describing the smell and feel, with a subtle insinuation that he's enjoying himself a bit while he's there.
  • Video Game Remake: Mostly with Eternal, which would serve as the basis for all future ports by effectively reworking the entire game and adding content and features that would be tweaked per port. Two other remakes were Ys I & II on the TurboGrafx-CD which was a notably different interpretation of the same core game, and the Korea-only Ys II Special for IBM PC that both radically overhauled and significantly expanded the content.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting: Alter Magic allows Adol to transform into a Roo and talk to monsters and demons.

Alternative Title(s): Ys II