|By Andrew Raub||Friday, 7 May 2004|
Super Monkey Ball 2 adds a lot to the multiplayer phenomenon that the original created. But unfortunately most of the changes and additions hinder it compared to the original.
The single player experience is slightly enhanced with the addition of a story mode. However, the level design is not quite up to par with the original. The backgrounds and environments are dulled down, and the over all strategy is based on solving how to finish the level in time rather than finesse with the control stick.
All six of the original minigames are unlocked from the start with many upgrades. The game mechanics in Monkey Fight and Monkey Target were changed so much that strategies are now required instead of basic gaming skills.
Six new minigames are available as well. Monkey Tennis is fun, but often creates problems when things happen for no apparent reason. Monkey Dogfight is a decent air combat game, but the action is too spread out to make it really fun. Monkey Shot is like Virtua Cop or Time Crisis, but since you have to use the controller the real fun is spoiled. Monkey Boat is hardly worth unlocking and is pretty hard to jump into. Monkey Baseball is a wacky take on America’s favorite pasttime, but games tend to be completely one sided. Monkey Soccer is the best of the bunch, requiring only fast reflexes, but allowing strategy to create some cool plays.
Super Monkey Ball 2 basically just sucks the simplicity right out of the Super Monkey Ball namesake and leaves something to be desired. It isn’t bad, but the first is just much more fun. It gets major points for variety though.