Author Topic: Super Monkey Ball 2  (Read 3241 times)

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Offline Feep

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Super Monkey Ball 2
« on: February 07, 2003, 03:28:59 PM »
                                                Overall Score
                                                    9 / 10

   GameCube didn't exactly have the most blockbuster of launches, if
y'all remember correctly. The marquee Mario title was absent, and the
lackluster Luigi's Mansion had about as much entertainment value as
watching a plant grow. Beyond Rogue Squadron 2, there was seemingly
NOTHING for a GC owner to buy...ah, but wait! What's this title behind
the fourteen copies of Wave Race? Super Monkey Ball? WTF? Ah, the
sleeper hit Super Monkey Ball, featuring a Marble Madness-inspired and
strangely satisfying main mode, accompanied by numerous mini-games great
for a multiplayer get-together. When SMB2 was announced, it wasn't a
question of if I'd get it...but how many seconds after its release
would I be able to obtain a copy.

   Sega and Amusement Vision didn't disappoint. Improving in almost
EVERY way from the original, Super Monkey Ball 2 should reduce the
sales of SMB1 to about 2 a year. The main game, now featuring story and
challenge modes, has been significantly expanded and featuring 150 new
stages of monkey-ballin' glory. The original six party-games are also
back with upgrades, and six new games wait to be unlocked from playing
the main game. Woo-hoo.

   Super Monkey Ball 2 is one of those games where graphics shouldn't
matter, where as long as the physics engine was functional, who the heck
cared what it looked like. This philosophy was evident in SMB1, the GC's
worst-looking launch. However, SMB2's graphical engine has been
undoubtedly enhanced. Featuring some beautiful backgrounds and some nice
use of new water effects, particle engines, and volumetric fogging, SMB2
is a lot better than it could have been. Sound truly IS a non-factor, I
honestly don't think I've ever even noticed any music besides that in
the menus. It plays, and is easily audible, but it just doesn't seem to
get a reaction from my ear drum. It's pleasant enough, but don't expect
a soundtrack.

   In the main game, a Story mode was added to the regular old
challenge mode. Now, obviously, a story trying to explain why monkeys
are rolling around incredibly-bizarre stages while collecting bananas in
translucent balls is going to be a little odd, but this game goes NUTS.
It's unbelievably ridiculous; I just want to shut my eyes during some of
the cinematics. Apparently, the monkeys use a magical spell,
"Ei-Ei-Poo!", to defeat their nemesis, Dr. Bad-Boon. I drove myself to
complete this mode once, and I will NEVER touch it again. Lives do not
exist here; stages can be attempted as many times as you see fit. Only
100 of the 150 levels in the game can be accessed here, so head on over
to challenge mode, the real meat.

   Arranged like the previous Super Monkey Ball, there are Beginner,
Advanced, and Expert difficulty levels, including Extra levels for
completed a difficulty without using a continue, and the elusive Master
difficulty levels. PLENTY of challenge here, much more than you average
gamer will be able to handle, but it has been made a bit easier to
unlock the Extra levels due to a feature that allows a player to buy
more lives per continue. Booooo.

   So what's up with the mini-games? Here are the twelve mini-games,
broken down for ya...

   Monkey Race 2 - Sega's spin-off of Super Mario Kart, upgraded from
last time. Eight monkeys can now roll in a race on one of six brand-new
tracks, featuring new items and some new physics. Can be highly
entertaining, but there are far better crazy kart-racing games on the
market.

     Monkey Fight 2 - one of the most highly addictive games from SMB1
is back, with a new "charge punch" that improves game-play
significantly. Four monkey balls with punching gloves attached roll  
around, trying to knock off the other players. While still more fun
than a barrel of monkeys (...), I would have liked to see some more
interesting stages and some new items.

   Monkey Target 2 - massively superior to the first, Monkey Target 2
turns a good-idea-gone-wrong into a good-idea-gone-right. Four monkeys
now simultaneously roll down a ramp and get shot into the air, where
they glide to a series of targets and land on them, scoring points. The
Wheel of Danger has been done away with, and items are now available to
obtain and use in the same run. Adding formation flying was a nice
touch, though only 3 different target arrangements is still terrible.
What were they thinking?

   Monkey Billiards 2 - a surprisingly accurate and enjoyable
pool-sim, this version features US Nine-ball, JPN Nine-ball, Classic
8-ball, and Rotation. Woo!

   Monkey Bowling 2 - this mini-game is, in my opinion, far and away
the best in the game. It is PERFECT. Intuitive and precise controls mix
in with a complex physics engine to almost perfectly mimic how real
pins fall, but it's so much more than that. Each monkey now has
different attributes, catering to an individual's personal style.
Challenge mode is back, where you do your best to knock down specific
arrangements of pins within a certain number of tries. Also included is
Special Mode, three difficulties of lanes that feature some completely
wacky lanes. Some curve, oscillate, twist, raise, bump, whatever, but
they're all fun as hell. You unlock the next difficulty by getting a
certain score on the previous. This alone is worth my fifty bucks,
people. Believe it.

   Monkey Golf 2 - receiving the most intense make-over of all the
original games, Monkey Golf 2 ditches the old mini-golf routine for a
full-blown golf sim. The eighteen holes, while fairly interesting at the
end, get old REALLY fast, and the gameplay just isn't deep enough to
warrant continued play. Oh well.

   Monkey Boat Race - ugh. SO BAD. This terrible mini-game has your
monkey paddling down a river using the L and R buttons along tedious
courses and minimal items. Don't come for this one, folks.

   Monkey Shot - a classic cursor shoot-em-up, this mini-game takes
you through three levels complete with bosses. While this is fairly
entertaining, the game has absolutely ZERO replay value with one
person. Multiplayer is fairly decent, so whip out this one with a
gunslinging partner.

   Monkey Dogfight - it's surprising how little a market this genre
has in today's gaming world...up to four monkeys comb the air, using a
simple machine-gun and missile arsenal to blow your enemies out of the
sky. Fun. Lots of it.

   Monkey Baseball - for the record, I have ALWAYS hated baseball. A
lamer, more boring sport has never been invented...but SMB2 somehow
takes that game and makes it fun. LOTS of fun. One player pitches
(controlling the monkey mid-pitch to fake out the batter), and the
other attempted to send the ball flying into a pocket in the outfield
or a homerun jump board. Different configurations of pockets and
defensive formations add a lot to the game, and the option to reduce
the drawn-out, nine inning game is priceless. Best of the new games.

   Monkey Soccer - while allowing for almost NO control of your team
whatsoever, this game can be shockingly fun. The field is simply too
small and contains too many monkeys to effectively play the game, but
the different teams and quick pacing of the game can be pretty
entertaining for awhile.

   Monkey Tennis - a dumbed down version of Mario Tennis, Monkey
Tennis tends to a long back-and-forth between the players. Not enough
options and features here to make it amusing; hopefully, we'll see
improvement in SMB3, if they make one.

   Well, there you have it. All twelve mini-games in a nutshell. If
you like multiplayer gaming, Super Monkey Ball 2 is an absolute must-
have. It only falls short of the Mario Parties and Super Smash Bros.
Melee in many-playered goodness, and has a style all on its own. Story
mode and some lackluster music mar the game a bit, but thirteen
separate games for fifty dollars is the best deal on the 'Cube. Come
for the main game, stay for the mini-games; Super Monkey Ball 2 is
wacky gaming at its finest.
Al' Ellisande, Al' Ellisande. Arek du arest cont alle axio, te arira.

Offline yeg0

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Super Monkey Ball 2
« Reply #1 on: March 01, 2003, 06:23:35 AM »
I would give it a 9.3/10.0
What would you give it, Feep? -scratch that....it's at the top
-yeg0

"HENSHIN-A-GO-GO, BABY!"

Offline TheCouch123

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Super Monkey Ball 2
« Reply #2 on: April 08, 2003, 07:24:36 PM »
Well good job feep i seriously had no intention at all to buy this game. I was really bored and was just randomly looking through some reviews read this one and i'm going to buy super monkey ball 2 tomorrow. Oh and Lugi's Mansion was much more entertaining then watching a plant grow and i've got more than my opinion to back that up. There is a plant you can water and make grow in the game plus the rest of the game and a plant and a game is better than a plant.



I am so bored
I am so bored.

Offline JoeSmashBro

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Super Monkey Ball 2
« Reply #3 on: April 21, 2003, 06:03:38 PM »
9/10 is a good score, but if i was giving scores on individual catagories I would give sound a 3/10. It's really really really really really really really really x 10000000000 bad. It is so annoying in my opinion. Just turn down the volume in pop in a cd, PLEASE!!

But of course sound isn't all that important in that game, which is why it still garners an 8 out of 10.
-Joe
"If the guests give you their coats, hang them in the closet!"
AIM: WhatJoeSays

Offline Bartman3010

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Super Monkey Ball 2
« Reply #4 on: June 19, 2003, 07:47:34 AM »
I'd give it a 7. While the tried and true gameplay established back in the days of Marble Madness were challenging, the 3D camera system makes it tricky to play the game. If only the camera was much more adjustable will the main games replay value sky rocket. Of course, the real replay value is finding all of the stages. The mini games are neat bonuses, but some like (Monkey Dogfight) dont really revolve around the regular gameplay, so gameplay balance can be an issue, sure they explain the controls, but some are just too simple for experienced gamers that want much more control over their monkey. Not to mention some mini games like Monkey Soccer, are poorly thought out. Hopefully Monkey Ball 3 will come around with all of these mini games and more. But the super-fast load times and fast paced gameplay is definatley a plus for this title.

But its still somewhat average, but now with its $30 price tag, you shant go wrong with this title.
- Bartman

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Offline Usul

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Super Monkey Ball 2
« Reply #5 on: July 10, 2003, 02:21:39 AM »
First I played Supermonkey Ball 2, then I sold it and bought instead Supermonkey Ball 1, which is way better in my eyes. Why?

I will try to explain why I prefer the first part over the second:

1. The core-game, in which you have to move a tableau in such a way that the ball on it doesn't fall into a hole but instead makes it to the finish-line as fast as possible:
The core-game is considerably different between part 1 and part 2. While in part 1, the emphasis was put on the skill you had to achieve in navigating the ball through a long course, with many obstacles,  part 2's courses are short and relie on a special trick you had to find out. Once you knew the trick, the challenge was over.

The difference is that part 1 is much more fun multiplayer-wise.


2. The racing-mini-game, sort of a mario-kart-experience on six courses.
The racing in part 1 and 2 is pretty much the same, with one big exception. In part 2 there is a new "weapon" that allows you to fire three rockets at once. These rockets then hit every other opponent that has a higher ranking during the race. That means that not only the next in front of you will be hit, but all up to the first in place, which basically ruins the whole racing-system.
Part 1 is better because it lacks that uber-weapon.

3. The billiard-mini-game, which is played with 9 Balls. In this case part 2 is better because it offers not only 9-Balls but also 8-Balls.

Sure, there are other mini-games, some of them are great like the flying or the bowling, others are boring like the tennis-game, others plain suck like the soccer-game or the boat-race.

I give Supermonkey Ball 1: 8.5/10

and Supermonkey-Ball 2: 7/10.
If you can read this you are too close