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The second SaGa game released on the Playstation, SaGa Frontier 2 was markedly different from its predecessor. Set in the world of Sandail, the plotline is divided into two scenarios, revolving around the lives and adventures of two men:

  • Gustave XIII, heir to the throne of the Finney kingdom, is abruptly exiled at the tender age of seven after failing to manifest any Anima during the Firebrand Ceremony. His mother, Queen Sophie, attempts to defend him, only to be banished alongside him; his younger brother, Philippe, angrily blames him for tearing their family apart. Forced to live in the slums, Gustave grows up embittered, torn between half-believing the ignorant bile spewed by others and aching for a chance to prove them all wrong...
  • William Knights is an adventurer who was just out seeking his fortune, only to have his simple life turned upside down by sudden personal tragedy. Soon, he finds himself searching for the secrets of 'The Egg', a mysterious, soul-stealing entity. Wil's tale spans three generations of the Knights family line, as matters keep growing beyond the scope of anything they imagined...

The two scenarios are very distinct: Gustave's plot arc is filled with political intrigue, with several sequences that are pure Cutscenes start-to-finish, while Wil's tale starts out as a more personal affair that gradually expands over the years, as he and his family uncover more about the situation they've gotten embroiled in. Naturally, the two tales intertwine over the course of history...

Late Arrival Spoiler warning: Nothing Is the Same Anymore after the Wham! Episode, and tropes related to the second half of the game will necessarily refer back to that event. Read with caution.

SaGa Frontier 2 contains examples of:

  • All There in the Manual - The Ultimania and Perfect Works books fill in a great deal of information about the world of Sandail, but they also spend quite a bit of time on the relationships between the characters, answering many questions left ambiguous in the game such as the relationship between Kelvin, Marie, Philippe III, and Gustaf
  • Arranged Marriage: Marie, to Cantal. Doesn't work out, and she divorces him after her father dies.
  • Anyone Can Die - Verges on Kill'Em All for the first generation, though that may not count since many of them die of old age. Even in the later generations, though, main characters can be killed off with almost no warning.
  • Artifact of Doom - The Egg, which is equal parts this, Sealed Evil in a Can, and Eldritch Abomination.
    • The Megaliths are this for the weak-minded, but they're more "dangerous" than evil, and those with strong enough Anima (such as Wil Knights) can control their power.
  • All of the Other Reindeer - Gustave is constantly insulted and underestimated due to his inability to use Anima.
  • Ancestral Weapon - Firebrand and Gustave's sword. Gustaf is the heir to both.
  • And Now for Something Completely Different - In both Gustave and Will's scenarios, you often end up playing a completely different party.
  • Badass Family - The Knight family definitly deserves a mention.
  • Badass Normal - Toyed with, as Everyone Is a Super, but magic is actually less effective than steel both in game terms and in-story. Gustave and the Egg are the only ones to realize this, and their steel soldiers completely curb stomp any army that gets in their way.
  • Badass Grandpa - Will Knights is playable again once he reachs his 80th. Sure, he will lose a tons of H Ps, but will keep his levels of mastery in weapons and anima, thus allowing him to not be completly overshadowed by the others party members, depending of how much you trained him of course.
  • Bag of Sharing - An NPC in Wil's hometown will allow you to switch inventories between teams, even ones who's never met and are separated by decades. You can also shared learned abilities across teams (and this is how you pick up one that would otherwise be Lost Forever).
  • Bag of Spilling - Variant: Wil Knight will lose half of his stats due to being an old geezer, though you can grind his stats back up.
  • Capital City: Hahn Nova is the capital of Gustave's empire. During the second half of the game, it becomes a MacGuffin for the various noble factions to fight over. After Count David of Jade liberates it from the fake Gustave, it instead becomes a Truce Zone for the next fifty years.
  • Changing of the Guard - The game lasts for three generations. The only one from the original generation who's left to fight against the Egg is Wil Knights himself, and he's not the main character when it happens.
  • Clingy MacGuffin - The Egg always seems to come back and mess with people every so often. Hopefully, this time it's gone for good, as Gustaf used Gustave's steel sword to destroy it.
  • Combination Attack - If you get it right, this you can get all the members of the part, AND THE ENEMIES, joining in.
  • Contemplate Our Navels - Occurs a fair amount in Gustave's storyline.
  • Cursed with Awesome - Gustave's inability to use Anima. It just encourages him to become the greatest fighter of his time.
  • A Day in the Limelight - Some of the sub-scenarios, especially on Gustave's side, focus on the supporting cast.
  • Dead Guy, Junior - Given that Gustave was born of nobility, he's the thirteenth of his line, and a few other characters share his name.
    • To clarify: Gustave XIV was his younger half-brother and died without children. Gustaf is the son of Philippe III, who is the son of Kelvin and Marie, after the latter divorced Cantal.
  • Decapitated Kingdom: When Cantal of Otto dies (of old age), his kingdom is divided among his children. Over eighty of them, including his bastards. The various petty kingdoms immediately become completely irrelevant to the struggle for Hahn Nova.
  • Die for Our Ship - Oddly, an Official Couple can fall victim to a form of this in-game: if Wil sends Cordelia to complete the 'Inflitrate! Alexei Gang' scenario, she winds up Killed Off for Real, and Wil ends up with Labelle instead.
    • All There in the Manual has this option as canon; the family trees in the Perfect Works book have Wil married to Labelle/Lavelle
  • Duel Boss - You can potentially turn almost any regular battle into a one-on-one match where you input up to four commands, and some of the boss battles are fought like this.
  • Evil Power Vacuum - Gustave's death creates a rare Good Power Vacuum. Kelvin's death just exacerbates it further.
  • Final Death - Happens when a character runs out of Life Points (though said points will recover if you manage to win the battle).
  • Flaming Sword - This is the whole point of the Firebrand Ceremony: channeling one's Anima through it to make the blade flare up proves that you're a worthy ruler. This is taken very seriously.
  • Gambit Pileup - Pretty much the entire game after Gustave's death.
  • Game Breaker - Gustave's steel items have insane levels of both physical and magical defense (with the downside of never being able to cast magic when you're equipped with it, but you hardly need to) and can do more damage than anything else; having steel troops in a battle pretty much guarantees victory. (It's also an In-Universe game breaker, as Gustave's use of steel gives him dominance over the other kingdoms.)
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation - Johan tells Gustave that "even in my weakened condition, I can still fight far better than you!" and Gustave agrees to leave the fight in his hands. Wait, what? Is he talking to the same Gustave? The most formidable user of Weapon Arts in the entire world? The king who goes monster-hunting in the middle of a pirate-ridden Vice City because he's bored?
    • Well, technically Johan is actually telling that to one of the others who is only really good at spell arts, it's just that Gustave decides to let him handle it anyway. Though it is rather annoying that we have to play as Johan, especially since he has low stats unless you play the scenario entitled 'Johan the Assassin' and visit several towns and do some grinding.
      • Johan IS dying, to be absolutely fair. In spite of that he does only a bit less damage than Gustave and far, far more than Ventarbre. What screws him over is low durability, but again, DYING. It'd be odd if he had awesome durability like Gustave given how he wears light armor AND is dead on his feet.
    • Also, the fact that Gustave isn't allowed to take the field in this battle, because it's quite likely that a player-controlled Gustave would be able to wipe out an endless line of monsters singlehandedly and he has to die to kick off the rest of the plot.
  • Gender Equals Breed - Cordelia (called Cody by Wil) is Wil's initial love interest and the mother of Wil's son, Rich. Depending on the player's choice, though, Cordelia can die, leaving Wil to marry Labelle instead. However, despite obviously not being Cordelia, Labelle still gives birth to the exact same son. This is probably done to avoid complicated story and game mechanics.
  • Government Conspiracy - The ties between the two stories are tenuous, and most of the lords don't have a clue what's really going on behind the scenes. Their senior advisers, however, do; they're the ones providing most of the support for the Knights heroes in the later part of the game.
  • Gray and Grey Morality - The wars between the aristocrats are fought for perfectly good political reasons.
  • Guide Dang It - Good luck finding the best items / unlocking the best abilities without a walkthrough.
  • Highly-Visible Ninja - The Scorpion Assassin's Guild actually relies on this; to quote Johan, "people will look for things they can't see", when the aforementioned assassins use Anima to an effect not unlike a Somebody Else's Problem Field.
  • Heroic Sacrifice - Rich he throws himself into a chasm in a Megalith clutching the Egg so that it can't harm others; of course the Egg comes back anyway.
  • Hopeless Boss Fight - Johan's last stand; ditto the "Tycoon Wil" scenario in which your only recourse is to survive long enough to run away each time until you can trigger a cutscene.
  • Hope Spot: Kelvin's victory at Salisbury shows everyone in Sandail that he's still got what it takes, but it's not enough to stop his alliance from breaking apart and the wars from starting up again.
  • Jack of All Stats: Ginny Knights, in theory; she is a preeminent master of both Anima arts (like her grandfather), and the sword (like her parents). She can be developed into a spellcaster, a Magic Knight, or even a Steel if you so choose.
  • Improbable Hairstyle - Gustaf
  • Infinity-1 Sword: Gustave's sword. Gustaf inherits Gustave's sword and Firebrand, an another Infinity-1 Sword (though this sword is less powerful than Gustave's sword, so Firebrand is in fact utterly useless to Gustaf, except for providing Fire Anima and balancing the negative effects of having a steel weapon equiped, since Firebrand remains a very powerful Quell, the only weapon actually to provide a bonus of +2 to SP Regen, which cancels the -2 SP Regen Malus of Gustave's sword). Actually, with his two weapons slots occupied, Gustaf can't equip the Infinity+1 Sword of the game, or any other weapons for that matter, which prevents him, an already powerful character in his own right, to achieve a Game Breaker statut.
  • Infinity+1 Sword: Cinderforge Sword and Seven-Star Blade (that last one requires the use of the Pocket Station in order to obtain it).
  • In Harm's Way - Gustave easily gets bored with ruling after conquering half the world, which is why he keeps going out adventuring and kicking ass.
  • It's All My Fault - Wil laments this if he assigned Cordelia to the solo mission in 'Inflitrate! Alexei Gang', which inadvertently leads to her death.
  • Lamarck Was Right - Ginny inherited her grandfather's mastery of the wand and of the tree, water, rock and flame anima and her father's mastery of the sword. And she must thanks her mother for her impressiving Weapon Points regeneration of 4 (by the way, her mother had a regeneration of 5).
  • Logical Weakness: The Scorpion Assassins' ability allows them to hide by blending in with other people's Anima. Gustave can't sense Anima at all, so he can see Johan just fine.
  • Master Swordsman - Gustave is the most famous one, but anyone specializing in Sword-based Weapon Arts can also fit the bill. The greatest swordfighter in the game ( Diana), however, never takes part in any major fights.
  • Magic A Is Magic A - Anima cannot be channeled through metal, so most weapons are made of materials that can channel it, such as wood or rock. Since he can't use Anima anyway, Gustave forges a metal blade for himself, and it becomes his trademark.
  • Magic Knight - Most fighters are trained in using both Spell Arts and Weapon Arts, to a greater or lesser extent. The biggest exceptions are steel warriors, who go all-in on Weapon Arts (and completely overmatch magic users).
    • Gustaf is pretty much guaranteed to be this, as the wielder of both Firebrand (the ultimate Fire Quell) and Gustave's Sword (the most powerful steel weapon).
  • Magikarp Power - Diana. She starts out with no skills or abilities to speak of, but has a Weapon Point regeneration of 5. If you grind with her (which is somewhat pointless, as she's only in your party for one adventure), she has the the theoretical potential to become the ultimate steel warrior.
  • Magnificent Bastard: Invoked. The Marquis Cantal of Otto is referred to as "the Mephistophelian hero" for his ruthless cunning.
  • Marathon Boss: The Egg, full stop. See the entry about it under the trope page for more details.
  • Masashi Hamauzu - This is one of his most notable composition works. The soundtrack is also known for most of its track names being in Gratuitous German, Hamauzu himself having been born and raised in West Germany.
  • Muggles Do It Better - Steel beats magic.
  • Never Found the Body - Gustave.
  • No Export for You - Sort of: you can earn items (and a mini-game) if you have the (Japan-only) Pockestation peripheral; however, if you do manage to get your hands on one, you can use it with the NTSC version of the game with no problem.
  • One Steve Limit - Averted, there are multiple Gustaves and Philippes.
    • Don't forget the two Williams!
  • Our Souls Are Different - Anima is viewed as a manifestation of the user's soul; thus, those who cannot visibly summon said energy are seen as hopelessly crippled spiritually, to the point where the very existence of their soul is questioned by the ignorant.
  • Resignations Not Accepted - The entire assassin's group Johan belongs to is engraved with a magical tattoo that would slowly poison them to death should they attempt to forsake the organization. Johan has one last stand attempting to keep monsters at bay while said poison is chipping away at his life points each turn.
  • Retired Badass - Most of the surviving previous-generation heroes in the second and third generation.
  • Rite of Passage - The Flame Ceremony. Gustave being unable to complete it kicks off his plot.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge - When Philippe II is assassinated during his Firebrand ceremony, his father grabs the Firebrand in an attempt to use it on his son's murderers, and is transformed into a giant red dragon.
  • So Long and Thanks For All the Gear - Mostly averted, as you can trade inventory between parties, even ones that are not active for the present scenario; you can even equip abilities that other parties have learned.
  • Spell My Name with an "S" - Narsus/Narcisse, Tylor/Tyler, Labelle/Lavelle, Meteor/Methya, Vantarber/Ventarbre, Flin/Flyn/Flynn. Gustaf in Ginny's era is an odd example since he's really Gustave XV - Marie and Kelvin's grandson, thus Gustave XIII's great-nephew.
  • Succession Crisis: Three of them. The first occurs when Gustave XII dies, and Gustave XIII returns to Finney to overthrow his younger brother and claim the throne. The second happens when Gustave dies without an heir, leading to a period of global warfare. The third happens when Cantal dies; this one isn't a crisis because there's no heir, but because there's too many heirs, and the division of Otto wrecks the kingdom.
  • Supporting Leader - Gustave to Wil, though he's the hero of his own story as well. David, Count of Jade, to Ginny.
  • Taking You with Me - Rich again. Johan also tries to take as many monsters with him as possible as he is slowly dying from poison.
  • Tangled Family Tree - You need the artbooks to get the full picture of the Finney and Jade royal houses. Philippe of Jade is not Leslie's son, either by Kelvin or Gustave. He's actually the son of Kelvin and Marie, making him the heir to Finney as Gustave's nephew. Cantal of Otto also qualifies, having over eighty children by various wives and mistresses.
  • Tech Tree - The more awesome skills (and magic) are learned from other skills or a combination of abilities during one-on-one combat. You can also occasionally spark / learn new skills during regular combat, but you have to be pretty lucky.
  • Two Lines, No Waiting: Gustave's story and Wil's story are mostly separate, though Wil later receives backing from the senior advisers of the Gustave faction to go after the Egg. Gustave himself also takes the field alongside Wil's allies at one point.
  • Un-Sorcerer - Gustave.
  • Weak but Skilled - Gustave, sort of. He can't use Anima, so instead he masters the use of steel weapons. Subverted in that, really, a Steel Soldier is usually far stronger than an Anima user, particularly when using Weapon Arts.
  • Weapon of Choice - Gustave's BFS.
  • The Wise Prince: Count David of Jade, the great peacemaker.
  • With Great Power Comes Great Insanity - Stage one of prolonged contact with the Egg. Stage two is usually transformation into a mindless monster.
  • Won the War, Lost the Peace: Kelvin manages to outlast Cantal and claim Hahn Nova for himself, but two years after his victory, his alliance crumbles and the world descends into complete anarchy anyway.
  • Worthy Opponent: Cantal to Gustave XII, and later to Kelvin.
  • You Shall Not Pass - The hardest battle in the game is surviving for eight turns against steel troops with an army full of Red Shirts. (In Wil's scenario, you find out that Gustave eventually shows up to reinforce your side, but you never get to use him as a unit.)
    • Inverted: One of the early boss battles in Wil's scenarios is a group of slimes attempting to stop him from charging into the breach where they're infiltrating a mine (the battle ends instantly if you can get a party member past them).
    • Also, Johan the Assassin's last stand. He plants himself in front of the room Gustave is in and singlehandedly holds off an entire army, racking up a kill count in the hundreds before succumbing to the deadly poison he was infected with.