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LTTP: PixelJunk Shooter 2

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LTTP or ‘late to the party’ pieces are opportunities for me to catch up and write about games I missed out on the first time around. They may contain spoilers.

I thought PixelJunk Shooter was a slow starter. Q-Games spent a bit too much time easing into the liquid physics gameplay. It didn’t really get going until the third world which was unfortunate because there were only three worlds in the first instalment.

PixelJunk Shooter 2 continued the tale of the little spaceship after it was swallowed by the giant monster at the end of the first game. It also continued bringing out liquid puzzles without any of the hand holding of the original. Q-Games were free to go wild with new types of substances and powers across a completely new set of worlds.

The objectives remained the same; save stranded researchers with the option of retrieving giant diamonds for myself. Reaching the survivors or freeing them for retrieval required creative sparking of volatile gasses or an understanding the gameplay mechanics I learned along the way. Easy obstacles included cooling down lava in order to clear a path and transporting a light source so I can simply see where I was going.

As it turns out an understanding is all that was required in this sequel. I did surprisingly little shooting and a lot more spin dashing because I found it far more effective in this game. It wasn’t like the enemies were dangerous either. The environment itself posed a a greater threat to myself and researchers.

PixelJunk games are all about high definition 2D visuals. It could be striking like PixelJunk Eden or cutesy like PixelJunk Monsters. PixelJunk Shooter was neither — it was neutral. I didn’t feel it was impressive nor offensive; it was just okay to me. The sequel was far more interesting with its environments. It wasn’t so tame and static this time around.

Another area that received a jolt of enthusiasm was the musical score. It felt livelier without turning into the soundtrack of a side scrolling shoot ’em up like U.N Squadron. I wish the same could be said about the sound effects which felt more like whimpers for a game called “Shooter”.

Downloadable games like this is what makes the PSN Store and Xbox Live! Arcade. Fun original games that harken back to the classic games of without resorting to HD rereleases or remakes. Unless you absolutely hated PixelJunk Shooter, I believe this is well worth your time and your $10. If you’re a new comer? I have no problems recommending this sequel over the original. It’s a wonderful distraction.


Ratings Guide

For more information on PIxelJunk Shooter 2, visit the official website.

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