The first Etrian Odyssey Untold game introduced the new "Grimoire Stones" mechanic to the series, which let players augment their character, whether custom or story mode-based, with new skills or the ability to use other class's weapons in battle. It allowed for some interesting combinations, but was held back by some issues. The second upcoming game in the series sets out to fix that and Atlus has new information about the mechanic's implementation in that game.
Much like the first Untold game, this entry is essentially two games in one as it includes both a Nintendo 3DS update to the original Etrian Odyssey 2: Heroes of Lagaard with new dungeon layouts, graphics and system improvements that were first featured in the first Etrian Odyssey Untold in the Classic mode. The second part is the Untold portion which includes a brand-new story mode with a fixed party, voiced dialogue and animated cutscenes that follows the bittersweet tale of the Fafnir Knight, Princess Arianna, Flavio - another hero of the Midgard Library - and the two adventurers, Bertrand and Chloe. The five meet while exploring the Ginnungagap ruins, and then after misfortune unfolds, they venture back and forth between the Yggdrasil Labyrinth and Ginnungagap, slowly working their way to discovering the origins of the Fafnir Knight.
The twist with the new Fafnir class is that the hero has the ability to switch between his human and a beastly demonic form which enhances his abilities and attributes and is exclusive to the Untold portion of the game. Untold 2 also includes changes to the Grimoire system from the first game which some players had issues with due to its implementation to make it easier to use and understand. The easier Picnic difficulty featured in the original Untold game also carries over into this version.
In the cafe, Regina will be able to help players equip, trade and recycle Grimoire Stones. Trading works by striking up a deal with passing explorers in the cafe and offering enough stones until you hit the 100% mark, allowing those low-level stones you don't need to have a use to help sweeten the deal.
Regina can also help with recycling the Grimoire Stones. After selecting the stones you don't need anymore and offering them to Regina, you can obtain a brand-new stone after exploring enough in the labyrinth. And the more you add in, the better the resulting Grimoire is, so it's another way to get rid of those old stones you don't need anymore for new stones.
All initial copies of the game at retail will include an official staff book filled with 22 pages of artwork, including early drafts of character concepts, introductions to the characters, with both explanations of their individual back stories as well as developer insight to the character creation process, and QR Codes that will unlock some beginner-friendly Grimoire Stones. The second bonus is a CD soundtrack filled with early versions of the EO2U music by series composer, Yuzo Koshiro. There will also be three Nintendo 3DS themes, with the first being released on July 14.
Etrian Odyssey 2 Untold: The Fafnir Knight will be released on August 4 in North America in both retail and digital format via the Nintendo eShop for $49.99. NIS America will be handling the European release, which will release in that territory on February 12, 2016.