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Power Stone 2
  opened by paleface at 03:45:45 12/30/04  
  last modified by paleface at 12:27:18 03/05/24  
  paleface [sys=DC; cat=Fighting; reg=NA]
The original Power Stone was one of the few games I've ever returned. Later I went and got the sequel because I had some buddies over and I'd heard that Power Stone 2 supported up to four players at once. Did that make it fun? Unfortunately, no.
The game is a free-movement fighting game in which you run around little arenas picking up weapons and gems. Get three gems and Ka-ZAM, your character undergoes a transformation into an ultimate bad-ass and can dish out extremely powerful attack for a short period of time. After that wears off it's back to the normal attacks with punches, jump kicks, various weapons, or by throwing things or people.
At first glance the game looks hyperactive, bouncy, and really fun. But it's proven just too frenetic for my tastes. There are always several random events taking place at once: items spawning, exploding, the stage transforming, etc. This is all very distracting from actually beating up the enemy. And when you finally get to that, it seems like generally the first person to press the attack button wins, so fights tend to come down to a lot of mashing Attack and trying to dive on gems. Oh, and gems pop out of you to a random spot on the stage when you get knocked down, so have fun chasing them.
It's particularly disappointing in terms of multiplayer because there's no co-op campaign. You can play team vs against CPU characters, but only four characters can be in the game at once, so the most you can have on a team is three, and they'll have a huge advantage against their single opponent. And what happens if you beat them? The fight restarts and you do it again. Ugh.
There's a sort of single-player adventure mode but it just gives the game a weakly overlaid item quest in that it keeps track of the powerup items you pick up while fighting. Then from the main menu you go into the item shop where you can buy more items, sell items, or mix items together to get different items. Again, big yay.
The game tries to mix things up a bit with a mid-boss fight, but if you get on the back-side of the stage, you really can't see yourself around the enemy's bulk, yet he'll be shooting at you, jumping on you and laser-beaming you just fine.
Bundle all of this up with an annoying announcer, not-insignificant load times and a distinct dearth of stages (there are like six or so total) and the game gets tiresome really, really fast.

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