What is so different about FF2j?? Read below, it may answer several questions that you may have concerning the game.
1. Leveling up. There are no levels in FF2j! You build stats with a more balanced, customizable system. In a nutshell, you get what you use. Use magic to build magic power, use weapons to build physical strength. Win a battle after taking severe HP losses, and you'll gain more HP afterwards. Same goes for MP. Weapons and spells have a "counter" associated with them which you can view on the status and magic menu screens, respectively. Usage makes the counter increase, and when it rolls over at 100, you gain a new level of proficiency in that weapon/spell. Knowing how the system works makes it very easy to advance your party -- you can attack your own characters to easily gain HP bonuses near the start of the game.
2. Show & tell. Whenever you talk to an important character (or even a few important inanimate objects) a Show/Learn/Item menu will appear. "Show" tells the person a password, "Learn" allows you to acquire any keywords that person might be teaching, and "Item" shows or gives one of your inventory items to the person. Use these commands often, when you can, to see what different characters might have to say.
3. Your parties, yourselves. For most of the game, your party will consist of three static characters (whose names default to Lionel, Maria, and Guy) and one temporary character (who is often either much stronger or much weaker than the rest of your party).
4. Item wrangling. You have a VERY small inventory space in this game. Keep a close eye on it, and make sure you have an empty space when you need to get a new key item. Also, the "Item" command in battle only lets you use items you've specifically equipped beforehand. Plan ahead.
5. How to cheat. Now that you know how magic and weapon levels are gained, you may be thinking that it sounds pretty tedious. Well, there's a way to cheat if youre into that sort of thing. When youre in a battle, selecting an attack or spell, and a target, the cancelling, increments the appropriate skill counter EVEN if you don't use that weapon or spell at all during the actual battle. Unethical, yes, but who wouldn't want to toast Imps and Hornets with Fire 18 or 9th level axe blows only an hour or two into the game?
6. Enter the Chocobo. It all started here. Chocobos don't figure as strongly into the game as they do in later Final Fantasy games, but they make their debut appearance here. If you head due south of Kashuon, you'll find the hidden Chocobo Forest. Talk to the erratically-moving bird and it will be waiting for you when you exit the clearing. You can ride around on it without fear of enemy attack, but if you dismount, the Chocobo flies back home.