I think it's easier just to list the good and bad for this game. If you've played the first valkyrie profile you should go for this one as well.
Good: Amazing graphics on the ps2. The environments are 3d in 2d side scrolling style. This does not tarnish the atmosphere, and you can see from some of the screenshots the graphics engine is consistent with alot of impressive effects. There is very little in the way of FMV, so if you're a final fantasy newbie who likes his FMVs spoonfed often, this game isn't for you!
Great Gameplay System, with a combination of turn based and real time action. Plenty of character development, and battles are always satisfying, whether you're a button masher or a more strategic player.
The story isn't going to make you go wow. If you're looking for a strong story, Valkrie Profile 2 doesn't offer it, although it does have its nice share of twists.
The item system is alittle clunky, and requires patience, but is no big deal.
This game rewards a second playthrough best, or if you're attentive you can be rewarded on the first playthrough as well. VP2 employs alot of little things like timing in attacks, sealstones, what your equipment is and what your skills are and how and when you release einherjar ALL contribute to whether your next boss battle will be very hard or a walk in the park. Investment reaps rewards. VP2 rewards gamers who are prepared to go that extra mile and actually THINK about their strategy.
The final fantasy series is a solid series but VASTLY overrated, so if you want a new direction but still want some JRPG goodness, VP2 is a great choice for the experienced and/or old school gamer. Newbies to gaming…Perhaps its better you stick to final fantasy.