Sunday, 2 October 2011

Teen Titans 2 (GBA)

I've already played the first Teen Titans GBA game, and it didn't really win me over, so I'm hoping this isn't just a new set of levels with the same old gameplay.

They've changed the title music a bit from the first game and added more singing. I think they're singing the ending theme though.

The Teen Titans have been kidnapped, and immediately society has begun to break down. Batman is probably all set to race in and save Robin, but unfortunately they don't have the rights to use his character so the Titans are on their own.

Yeah, this looks like it's going to be the same kind of game as the first one. The art style is the same, the music is similar, and that picture of Robin is identical. They still haven't given him his R logo back.

But he can duck in this one! Already the game seems like it's going to be more interesting to play than the first.

But first I need to find a way out of this cell. Hmm.... I know! I'll use the door.

Awesome, it's always nice to be able to check my moves. In the first Teen Titans hammering the B button three times in a row would trigger a three punch combo. They've kept the three button combo in this game, but added a new combo for when I really hammer the button.

This pretty much means that I always accidentally activate it in combat whether I mean to or not, and have to wait an unbearable split second for him to get bored of spinning his stick before I can move on.

On the plus side, it can hit enemies standing behind or hovering above me, so I have some defence against being surrounded.

Robin takes a moment to STARE INTO YOUR SOUL.

Wall jumping, that's new too. It seems they've focused more on the platforming for the sequel, rather than continually breaking it up every few screens by blocking me in and forcing me to beat up a few waves of enemies before I'm allowed to go jumping again.

Sometimes boxes contain vital life saving pizza, which is all the justification I need to destroy them all on sight.

It's so nice to be able to duck in this. I can't actually do any low attacks to hit that guy, but he does do an uppercut punch while ducked.

Which seems like a fair trade off, because when I'm ducked I pretty much block all regular attacks. So I can hide safely behind my protective cape and immediately uppercut enemies when they pause between punches.

Level one complete! My reward, a level select. And I can use the 'Return to Tower' option in the pause menu to come back here whenever I want. Which is good game design in my opinion, especially as I get the feeling I might be able to come back with different characters later and open locked doors.

Like this one for instance. It's coloured green so may I need Starfire's powers to get in here. Or was it Beast Boy that opened green doors in the first Teen Titans game, I forget. Maybe I just need to find a terminal for Robin to hack, I don't know.

I can't find another way to go so I guess I'll go computer hunting.

Yes! I've found a computer. Or maybe not, I can't seem to do anything here. My Starfire theory is starting to seem more likely. But I haven't rescued Starfire, Beast Boy, or anyone else yet so I need to find another way across.

Come on, open up! I demand it! You know, for all I know these might just be unusually colourful walls, and not actually lead anywhere at all. Either way I need to find another way to get around what I assume to be a green door.

Maybe if I can get onto these boxes and jump over the top, I'll be able to get onto the construction girders hanging above the green door.

Well, fuck. It's a bottomless pit.

It's cool though, I don't have lives and I respawn automatically at the beginning of the level again so I'll just come back and give it another shot.


Okay I'm back up at the green boxes, and this time I'm going to be extra careful not to destroy the crates so I have steps give me the height I need to make it over.

Come on you little bastard, just a little bit higher!

Oh alright, this clearly isn't going to work. I need a new plan. I know, I'll check youtube!


Well I restarted the level and here I am back at the green door. What I was supposed to do, is to jump on THIS BOX. It wasn't in the last screenshot because I always break boxes on sight, inadvertently removing the CRUCIAL ELEMENT necessary to make progress in this level.

I'm going to be more careful with boxes from now on.

Awesome. It took me a while but I've finally reached the other side of those bloody crates. Now I can get around the green door and find the exit to this damn level.

I'm suppose to use these computer terminal to hack a satellite but this guy keeps interrupting me while I'm typing and it's not appreciated.

This enemy hits harder than the others, but that doesn't matter much because I can block every punch and hit him with an uppercut when he's open.

Next level, and I'm still going right and hitting the same enemies. It wouldn't be so bad if the combat was more satisfying.

Well, I fell down a hole. I'm not even irritated, I'm just kind of disinterested with it all now to be honest.

Well to be fair, they are throwing more varied opponents are me as I progress. Like these bouncing balls.

 And these laser turrets that unfolded out of the wall and barely gave me a chance to duck out of the way.

And these floating orb/spider robot dispensers that sit on the floor or ceiling throwing out seemingly infinite enemies until I put them out of action with an auto aimed throwing disc.


They scared me at the start by giving him a huge health bar, but he doesn't actually take many hits to kill.

Aww, they've taken my duck/block move away! Charged energy beams is totally not a fair trade off.

In Teen Titans I could switch characters at any time, but in this I seem locked to playing as whoever the level was designed for. Which may actually be a solid design choice, but I liked having options. It seems that I can open up doors in older levels with my new characters, but I have to use the 'L' button to call them in to help.

Despite all my complaints I just can't seem to dislike this game. It's too well made, too nice looking. Even the music's catchy enough. The original Teen Titans fell into a pattern of running, fighting, running, fighting, and I just flew over all the platforming bits, but this is pretty much platforming the whole way so far and I definitely prefer that. The combat isn't much improved, but it's more bearable now I can skip past a lot of it if I want.

And I do actually want to play it again, so I'll bestow upon it my least prestigious award.

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Semi-Random Game Box