Follow TV Tropes
Season 2 tries very hard to put a cohesive story together. Parts of the "Girl in Blue" arc of the game are not exactly known for great storytelling, in particular due to the medium itself, where randomly appearing monsters constantly interrupt the dialogue just when it seems like things could be getting good.
The anime of course bypasses this problem completely, but maybe it ended up going a bit too far in the opposite direction. The Albion arc (starting with episode 2), due to the emphasis on showing the past relationship between Katalina and Vira, drags on for a whole 4 episodes. 4 episodes in a 12-episode season! For anyone vaguely familiar with the story, or for anyone who has watched the intro at least ONCE, it's painfully obvious that there's going to be a showdown with Vira at some point. No real surprises here.
The next 3 episodes, which comprise the "mist-shrouded island" arc, I would actually consider the highlight of season 2. Not only because these episodes do a great job at subverting the expectations of those already familiar with the story, but also because the anime does away with any of the "video gamey" and clichéd elements of the original (such as hostile monsters, ghosts and zombies prowling everywhere or the village looking like a spooky theme park ride) and is instead played in a completely serious way. There's some witty banter at first, yes, but that's to balance out the drama that follows. And then there's Ferry, who basically owns every scene that she is in (she provides a LOT of exposition), has excellent chemistry with the crew (especially with Gran) and turns out to be impressively helpful, unlike her videogame counterpart (in that story arc at least).
The mist-shrouded island arc *does* have its problems of course - especially the final episode, which has quite a few internal continuity errors, such as the Grandcypher and its crew teleporting to meet plot requirements, or Gran and Ferry somehow finding time for a leisurely talk despite impending danger. Gran also ends up saving the day ALL by himself while everyone else that's available just waits for him to do his thing. Well, the emotional pay-off at the end is certainly worth it, even though I'm not happy about some of the implications.
What follows is the Golonzo arc. Oh boy. Not only is it extremely, ridiculously bleak (after the previous arc, some kind of comic relief would have been in order), but it *again* completely subverts the expectations of those familiar with the source material. This is not necessarily a bad thing, and actually used in a clever way to foreshadow later events. But the total over-reliance on Applied Phlebotonium for the plot to work makes me wonder a little bit if I'm watching Granblue or actually Star Trek.
Overall, I found season 2 well worth watching. It wasn't great, but it was definitely more consistent than season 1 in terms of narrative and art style.
Community Showcase More
How well does it match the trope?