Atelier Sophie 2: The Alchemist of the Mysterious Dream Review – PlayStation 4

It’s hard to believe that the JRPG Atelier franchise has been around for 25 years but that’s what this year marks. There have been over 20 games released thus far and publisher Koei Tecmo and developer Gust have no intention of stopping anytime soon. The team has most recently released the two Atelier Ryza games but for the 25th anniversary they have gone back and made a sequel to Atelier Sophie; Atelier Sophie 2: The Alchemist of the Mysterious Dream.

If you didn’t play the first Atelier Sophie that released back in 2015 don’t worry as you don’t need to in order to enjoy this game. Should you want to know a little about what happened though the team has included an option on the main menu that will brief you on some details from the first game. The story this time around takes place after the first game and follows Sophie and her friend Plachta as Sophie is trying to earn her alchemist license. While in the forest, they are sucked into a portal and end up in a different world called Erde Wiege. Sophie wakes up here but Plachta is missing and not only that but Sophie ends up meeting a younger Plachta. This younger version has no memory of Sophie though and that’s because Sophie comes to find out that this world is a dream like world that brings together people from different universes and times so that they can fulfill their dreams. The story is a bit to take in at first but it starts to make more sense as you go. Sophie ends up joining up with the younger version of Plachta as she tries to find her Plachta and return back home together. I really enjoyed the story in this game as it’s another laid back, coming of age tale full of interesting characters and emotional moments. The only thing wrong with it is that it takes a few hours to really get going but once it did, I was hooked.

The gameplay in Atelier Sophie 2 will be very recognizable to franchise fans but it adds some new ingredients to the well-established formula as well. You’ll be exploring different areas of the map fighting in turn-based battles against monsters, gathering different ingredients, and then taking said ingredients back to craft items through the synthesis system. Gathering materials is done at various spots throughout the different maps and you’ll use different tools to do so like a pickaxe or fishing rod. A new gameplay element that can affect what materials you’ll find in an area or what monsters you’ll fight is the weather system. The weather and time of day will change those things up so you’ll need to pay attention to which times and weather effects cause what to appear. You can change the weather using stones scattered about and you can change the time of day by sleeping. The weather can also open up areas that you couldn’t get to before such as making a lake frozen so that you can cross it.

Once you gather up the materials you need you can head back to the Atelier and interact with the Synthesis Board to start crafting items out of those materials. The board lets you automatically fill it out with the different elements needed to craft items or you can do it manually. If you’re in a hurry the auto option works fine but if you want the absolute best stats for your items then manually selecting them is your best bet. It honestly got a bit addictive to me trying to place different elements into the grid or pair ones of the same type up next to each other to get bonuses so that my item would be the best it could be. Again, if you don’t want to get into the nitty gritty here the auto-add works fine but those who enjoy the crafting will really enjoy the system in Sophie 2.

Atelier Sophie 2: The Alchemist of the Mysterious Dream - 14.jpg

Those items and weapons you craft will be useful when fighting enemies in the game. The battle system is Atelier Sophie 2 is turn-based rather than real-time and has you using six characters to fight. Three of them serve as your main fighters while the other three are backups for them. You’ll be attacking your enemies with different elements, casting buffs and debuffs, and using Twin Actions. Twin Actions can be used by spending the TP you gain as you attack. What these do is let two characters attack at the same time or let you swap a character in to take damage for another. It’s an interesting system that lets you pull off different offensive or defensive strategies depending on the occasion. You also can perform flashy Dual Trigger moves that have two characters team up to dish out a ton of damage at once. Overall, it’s a very enjoyable combat system so long as you don’t mind turn-based battles.

Atelier Sophie 2: The Alchemist of the Mysterious Dream - 21.jpg

Visually Atelier Sophie 2 might be the best-looking entry in this franchise yet. The characters in the game all look distinct and feature tons of facial emotions. The world has a lot of variety although some textures and such do look a bit outdated. Now for a bit of a complaint and that is that the game only runs at 30 frames per second. The performance is solid I’ll give it that but it’s a bit disappointing that there is no 60FPS option. There is no PS5 version of the game and no boost to performance when played on a PS5. Considering the first game ran at 60FPS and even the recent Atelier Ryza 2 it’s a bit puzzling why this game doesn’t. Load times are also a bit long which again probably could’ve been helped if there was a version built to take advantage of the PS5’s SSD. The game has a very good soundtrack and the Japanese voice acting is really good but sadly there is no English voiceover. This is something the first game had so I was a bit sad to not be able to hear Sophie in English again.

Atelier Sophie 2: The Alchemist of the Mysterious Dream - 01.jpg

Atelier Sophie 2: The Alchemist of the Mysterious Dream is the perfect way to celebrate 25 years of the franchise as it’s one of the best entries yet. The game has another interesting story as we get to join Sophie and a bunch of charming characters on an emotional journey. Furthermore, exploring and gathering materials is made more interesting by the new weather system, new layers to the battle system open up some fun possibilities and the crafting system is one of the most addictive yet. It was a surprise to go from Atelier Ryza 2 back to Atelier Sophie but it’s one that I’m very thankful the team sprung on us.

*Atelier Sophie 2: The Alchemist of the Mysterious Dream is available now on PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, and PC. PlayStation 4 version reviewed. Review copy provided by the publisher for this review.

Atelier Sophie 2: The Alchemist of the Mysterious Dream





  • Charming story full of fun and interesting characters
  • Weather system opens up new exploring and gathering possibilities
  • Engaging turn-based combat with some new twists
  • Crafting system can be addictive
  • Very pretty visuals and great Japanese voice acting


  • No 60fps option and load times can be a bit long
  • No English voice-overs
Written by
Editor/Writer/Reviewer here on I've been playing games for almost 30 years now and play everything from AAA blockbusters to Indie games.

Have your say!

0 0

Lost Password

Please enter your username or email address. You will receive a link to create a new password via email.