| paleface [sys=PS2; cat=Shooter_Horiz; loc=JPN] |
|Haven't played the first one all that much, so this won't sound overly informed. But you're back as a street-beating, somewhat pervy-looking photographer, prancing through wacky neighborhoods with your trusty camera, looking for the perfect picture to please your demanding editor at the newspaper.|
I don't remember these in the first game but your camera here has a zoom and a flash--zooming or flashing at certain points may reveal tantalizing bonus photo victims, some of which unlock extra stages. And of course there's no lack of plain-daylight stuff to snap, in fact the game really involves split-second reaction time, along with planning and developing a visual memory of the stages, helped by crafty probing with the camera, all while dodging projectiles and obstacles. It ain't easy bein' a photog, you know! In fact the game is killer at Normal difficulty, I'm still struggling along on Easy.
I dig the groovy tunes and the lovely, stylish 2D-in-3D art style, the screen just bursts with pumping and pulsing sprite action. Snap snap snap! Every stages has crazy and delightful surprises; it really is rewarding, and if you spend all your film fruitlessly, no problem, just run through the stage again, they aren't that long. In the process you'll have to go through the "briefing" stage again in the newspaper office where your boss types loudly and incessantly, and I really could have done without that and the extra load time associated with it (the game is on CD, not DVD) but at least you can skip it with Start.
The controls seem almost intentionally awkward, as if the designers wanted part of the challenge to consist of not really being able to have your finger squarely on all the controls at once--or maybe I'm just clumsy. But with movement on the d-pad or left analog stick, then zoom and flash on the L buttons, focus lock and shoot on the R buttons and shoot, jump and dash on the face buttons, you've quite literally got your hands full especially since you'll really want to use many of the buttons in combination with each other. Not a game quickly mastered! But they respond well and I'd call them challenging rather than frustrating.
Among funky 2D action games, this ranks up there pretty high.