Viewtiful Joe 2 PS2 Review

May 31, 2010 by  
Filed under PS2, Retro Content, Retro Reviews

Capcom have knocked up a sequel, which will surely delight the fans of Joe’s first outing. Those in search of innovation and expecting a major upheaval of the formula will be in for a shock though as Joe 2 is more of the same. It does introduce a few key new ingredients to freshen the aroma at least a little bit though, which is never something to complain about.

This time around the Rainbow Oscars have been stolen, which is a fairly disturbing thing for the movie world as these Oscars grant happy endings to movies. It falls to Joe to once again save the day, alongside his darling Silvia, resulting in an effective and heroic tag team. The plot is still as colourful as those bright and breezy visuals, it may not be particularly compelling, but delightfully entertaining it is.

Silvia is fresh from her “damsel in distress role” of the original game and joins Joe as a brightly coloured heroine. Silvia’s entrance introduces a brand new play dynamic to this sequel, allowing you to switch between characters on the fly with a single button press. The original game offered enough depth beyond the initial surface and Joe 2 follows suit with this brand new feature.

The duo have rather contrasting styles from one another, which makes the switching between hero and heroine a feature that sometimes requires experimentation for the best possible results. Joe packs as much of a wallop as his previous self, whilst Silvia is able to use long-range combat to see off her enemies from a safe distance.

Character switching also comes into its own when puzzles arise, whilst it was rather obvious of what you were intended to do during the original game, Joe 2 toughens things up a little and requires a few more brain cells to reach the solution to many of the puzzles. Sometimes for example, you are required to do a certain something with one character and then quickly switch to the other one to complete a puzzle and so on. This tag team element is a nice idea and works a real treat during the game.

Joe’s VFX powers are retained from the original game whilst Silva’s arrival spells the introduction of some brand new gameplay mechanics. Joe’s love interest not only has stolen the Shocking Pink bomb attack from the crimson coloured heroes arsenal, but can also employ a potentially devastating Replay ability. This VFX power allows Silvia to deal out triple the damage on foes, but is also rather risky at the same time due to the fact that you’ll suffer that same amount of damage if you take a hit whilst using it.

When the original game was released on the GameCube it was a fairly challenging brawler. The PS2 version brought much relief to those, who couldn’t reach the end of the game with the extra inclusion of an easy mode. Viewtiful Joe 2 offers no such thing and is therefore a fairly decent challenge on even the lowest difficulty level. This, alongside the various difficulties and extras assures that the game offers much in the way of lifespan.

Those fond of Joe’s earlier exploits should find much to love here in this colourful sequel, just don’t grab hold of the pad to play the game and expect a huge amount of innovation, as you’ll most likely be severely disappointed. Viewtiful Joe 2 is a great sequel to one of Capcom’s quirkiest games and delivers where it’s most important in offering a double dosage of fun.

8/10

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