ActRaiser 2 – Game Review (SNES)

ActRaiser 2 Review

ActRaiser 2 is a game released for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System by Enix (and Ubisoft in Europe). The game itself is a sequel to the previous “ActRaiser”, and sets the stage for all future games in the ActRaiser series.
In ActRaiser 2, the plot follows the same basic plot as the original, with the player being known as “The Master” and there being a singular, main evil entity. Unlike ActRaiser, ActRaiser 2 features a purely sidescroller style of gameplay. While many find this feature to be beneficial to the series, it does change the genre entirely; no longer is the element of being a “god” or the SimCity-like overworld control present. No longer can the player actually define the world in which the plot plays out. Ultimately, your goal as the player is to traverse each platforming level in order to slay six demons known as the Deadly Sins in an effort to prevent evil from taking over the Universe. Notably, the game is not a true sequel, but may in fact be a prequel to ActRaiser.

ActRaiser 2’s graphics are breathtaking, having been significantly updated since the first installment. While the game isn’t a true sequel to the first installment, it is an upgrade in every way, and details are more vibrant than ever. Despite it’s 16-bit nature, ActRaiser 2’s characters are wonderfully detailed, the environments exquisitely colorful and vibrant, and the palettes used in perfect harmony. I can’t imagine a better way to pull off a 16-bit sidescroller.

The music of ActRaiser 2 takes after the graphics; in ActRaiser 2, every single soundtrack resembles those of Star Wars. Each stage’s mood is set by an amazing score consisting of a huge band of a variety of instruments, turning one’s home theatre into a personal symphony in your own living room. This game’s audio blew me away.

The learning curve in ActRaiser 2 is moderate, and the difficulty of adapting to the control scheme is fairly low. After moving to this game directly after having played ActRaiser part one, I can easily master the controls for the pure-platformer. Since I don’t need to worry about controlling anything in “god” mode, everything is fairly straightforward.

Overall, ActRaiser 2 is a decent installment in the ActRaiser series. While it has certainly been outdone in later installments, and ActRaiser part one was indeed superior, ActRaiser 2 in all its sidescrolling, platforming combat glory, receives a firm 3.5/5 from me. And if you’re looking for some cheats or secrets for ActRaiser 2, you can check them out here.

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