Guacamelee! 2 Review in Progress (PS4)
Developer: DrinkBox Studios
Publisher: DrinkBox Studios
Disclosure: This review is based off of a review copy.
Guacamelee! 2, developed by DrinkBox Studios, is the sequel to Guacamelee!, originally released in 2013. I admittedly have forgotten a lot about the original due to time, but Guacamelee! 2 is a very impressionable game that stands out over the original based on my recollection.
For full context sake, I played Guacamelee! 2 on a PS4 Pro, no 4K TV, and I have to say this one beautiful game, full of colors and shadows that bounce off well of each other. The characters stand out in the crisp colorful graphics, and there is a clear visual difference in Guacamelee! 2 compared to the original. I distinctly remember playing Guacamelee! for the first time and liking the graphic models, but not too keen on the coloring. In the the sequel everything looks more vibrant with excellent lighting and brightness.
As someone that doesn’t remember much from Guacamelee!, you don’t really need to have played the original, but there are clear callbacks, and if you want to remain completely unspoiled about characters from the first game I suggest playing the first one first. Juan Aguacate is back in the sequel, settled with his family, until a disturbance occurs and he has to enter the Darkest Timeline to save the Mexiverse from a new villain, Salvador. In the beginning of the this game you revisit events from the first game to get you up to speed, The character callbacks in Guacamelee! 2 do not require you to know what happened in the original, as the story is explained.
4 hours in
The gameplay of Guacamelee! 2 is very fluid, as the controls are very tight and so far during my playthrough I haven’t felt like the controls are of any issue completing anything. The game still requires dexterity and a lot of precision, especially in routes get chests, but everything is fun to do. I have yet to rage, and I’m not sure if this sequel is easier, if it’s that l’m playing better with a PS4 controller as opposed Xbox controller on PC for the original, or if my gaming skills have improved. What do I know is that Guacamelee! 2 still maintains a healthy dose of a metroidvania experience, and I can’t wait to go back to earlier chests in the game to get them.
One of the new fine interesting elements of Guacamelee! 2 is Pollo Power! Yes, that’s right, you get to play as the chicken and fight as the chicken and change at will. The chicken also contains its own special abilities that can be upgraded. This brings me to one of my favorite things about the game, the skill abilities that can be unlocked. In Guacamelee! 2 you can buy new abilities wherever you are, no need to go to town, and you can also unlock moves to purchase by performing a certain amount of actions with a given move.The combat is also pretty fluid, as stringing combos together is pretty easy, especially the standard 25 hit combo that is referred to plenty in the game. I don’t remember this from the original, but there are certain enemies that you need to use certain moves in order to break their shield, signified by a colored outline of a specific color. I don’t know how I feel about this, but it is an interesting wrinkle in the combat.
I can’t end this without mentioning the pleasant soundtrack that helps add to atmosphere of the Mexiverse. I am 4 hours into the game and I believe I can see an end in sight on the World map, which is also very good. I expect my full review to be ready later in the week, but Guacamelee! 2 is one fun helluva game so far.