Granblue Fantasy: Relink review – great real-time combat drives this action-RPG follow-up

January 31, 2024
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At a glance, Granblue Fantasy: Relink, Cygames’ action-RPG follow-up to the 2014 original, has all the key ingredients of something easily-dismissible, including all the typical genre stereotypes like impractical fashion sense and annoying voices. But what’s underneath is very much worth your time. This is a deep tale of parental abuse, and the struggles of the child to claw their way out from under the shadow of their parent and re-establish their own life – and, naturally, it has a cracking combat system to go alongside it.

That story’s really the driving force in Granblue Fantasy: Relink, especially towards the end of the game. The overarching antagonist Lilith is trying to bring about the end of the world, manipulating her adopted child, Id, into putting down anyone who stands in her path. Id’s struggles to break free often take precedence over the main plot of saving the world, and that’s no bad thing – trying to help Id is a really compelling storyline.

Equally hidden beneath the surface of Granblue Fantasy: Relink is that fact it’s quietly a sequel to the 2014 RPG from Final Fantasy veteran composer Nobuo Uematsu, and artist Hideo Minaba – one later spun off into a 2017 anime and the 2020 fighting game that some might know a little better. This time, all the original heroes are back for another bout, including the protagonist Captain, wisecracker Rackam, stoic Katalina, and gruff Eugen, all forming the Skyfarers that sail among the clouds atop a big flying boat.

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