Review by NeoWingsX
"One of the coolest concepts comes back"
Ape Escape was quite the sleeper, it was a real shame it did not receive the attention it deserved, but now Ape Escape 2 comes in full swing to make everyone remember why monkeys are so darn cool. In fact, I'm not really a fan of platform games, but when there are monkeys involved you cannot say no.
The graphics in this game are really smooth and cool. Its light-hearted, cartoon-ish look really gives the game its polish. The characters are well done, and the lighting is quite good.
Every song I heard in Ape Escape 2 really matched the level or situation. The voice acting is really fitting to the characters (the main character's voices, Jimmy and Natalie, are done by the voice actors who do the voices of Ash and Misty in the Pokemon cartoon). The music added a flavor that really sat well with the environment.
Ah, the score that matters most. While Ape Escape is a pleasant change from games today (I'm more used to playing violent games) it is rather short and easy to beat. I have only owned Ape Escape 2 for three days and I'm already 90% done (I had to take breaks in between, bathroom breaks and whatnot). While there are 300 monkeys to catch, about 274 are pretty much very easy to catch (some will require you to go back to past levels with new gadgets to get them). Now, you don't HAVE to catch all 300 monkeys to beat the game, though if you want a certain secret (no, I'm not going to spoil) you'll need to catch all 300. To the most expert platform gamer, you'll breeze through this game like it is nothing. For the rest of you, it will be a little tricky for some places (mostly near the final levels, the rest are EXTREMELY easy).
When it comes to character detail on a personal level, Ubi Soft did a great job. When you use the monkey radar, it gives you stats on the monkeys, as well as personal descriptions giving every monkey its own personality and style. Some monkeys will be wimpy, while others will fight for their freedom. Either way, you have 11 basic gadgets and five vehicles to catch those cheeky monkeys.
This is the only game I know of whose main controls revolve most importantly on the two joy sticks on your Analog Controller. It is very easy to switch weapons when you're in a bind and you'll catch onto the controls in a matter of minutes (literally).
The major flaw of Ape Escape 2 is how easy it is. The problem doesn't lie on its length, but rather how quickly you will cut though this thing. At times I felt these monkey WANTED me to catch them, but later on they will give you a run for your money. If you love monkeys (which I do) and hitting them with a stun club and whatnot (where are those animal cruelty folks now, huh?) then you'll love this game.
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 07/07/03, Updated 07/07/03
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