Reviewed by Cameron Bourne
Nov. 29th 2004
Introduction: The first game in the Blinx series, Blinx: The Time Sweeper was a much hyped game that was said to change the genre. Guess what, it didn't. It was buggy, boring and in the end not fun to play. Developer Artoon looked to change that with their new game Blinx 2: Masters of Time and Space. Unfortunately once again they didn't succeed.
The Game: One of the weirdest things about Blinx 2 is that you don't actually play as Blinx. In fact he's barely in the game at all. You instead play as a member of either the time sweeping cat squad or the evil pig like Tom Tom Gang that you get to create. The story begins with the Tom Tom leader finding a big time crystal, which he touches and it for some reason shatters leaving pieces all over the place. As the Time Sweepers it's your job to find these pieces and bring them back for the good of the world, and as the Tom Tom gang you are also on a hunt for the sacred crystals. The story itself is pretty forgettable as well as all of the characters. It's too bad because it really takes you out of the game. One of the best things this game offers is the massive amount of customization. Whether it's dressing up a cat or a pig, there is a ton of options to choose from. Hair (or fur) colour, the clothes that they wear, and different body shapes and sizes. You are also able to create a team of Tom Tom's or TimeSweepers to go along with your character.
The gameplay is a lot like the originals as the TimeSweepers. You're equipped with a vacuum cleaner like weapon that can be used to suck up garbage, lock on to an enemy and then fire it back out at them. You can also pick up bombs for a more useful weapon. There are also assortments of time crystals that can be picked up as the TimeSweepers that allow you to slow down time, pause it, rewind, etc. They are kind of fun to use at first, but very quickly lose their appeal as the game goes on. As the Tom Tom's the gameplay is a totally different, although not unique, experience. Where most of the Time Sweepers missions are action based, the Tom Tom's missions center around a stealth mode of sorts. It is defiantly a different pace, but most of it is pretty boring and repetitive. Another part of the game that falls under the category of repetitive is the puzzles that make up the majority of the game. They are just generic puzzles that you will find to get very boring, very fast. They are also way to easy, it seems like the developers didn't want to have anyone frustrated like in the last game, so they instead went the opposite route.
Fortunately the gameplay isn't always the same, you will get some easy boss battles, and even some team combat. Unfortunately neither is very exciting, or original. The team battles consist mainly of one team on one end and another team on the other end in a room full of pickups. The AI also doesn't help the matter because it's flat out stupid; it is however a good thing that the enemy AI is just as dumb so there is no real advantage. Thankfully the game does feature a multiplayer option though, so you can either play in split screen or Co-op. The co-op is an interesting addition to the game, and it does actually the change the game a little bit. The levels have a few different twists, mainly in the puzzles that require two people to complete them. The co-op is an interesting idea anyways, but in the end it has a very unpolished feel, and doesn't seem like they spent any time on it at all. The 4 player split screen isn't very interesting either, basically it's you and 3 other players battling it out the same way you would in the single player.
Graphics & Sound: The graphics in Blinx 2 are pretty good, but nothing great. The cutscenes look pretty good, but the lip syncing is way off. But the game itself is pretty blah. The character models aren't very interesting and the enemies are nothing special. They are also all very overdone, because there aren't very many enemies in the game. The environments are alright as well, but once again are pretty similar to other platformer. There are also a couple frame rate drops during the game, which seems odd seeing as how it isn't an overly detailed game.
The sounds are also pretty boring. The soundtrack itself is very much like what you'd expect to hear from a cartoony platformer, and don't have much variety. The voice acting suffers too because almost all the characters have similar voices. In game sounds aren't done particularly good either, and once again feel very generic.
Innovation: Blinx 2 doesn't really offer up anything new to the genre. The puzzles, story, sounds, and graphics all feel like what you would expect from a platformer and any original idea was pretty much used up in the first game. This isn't to say that the game doesn't offer anything that hasn't been seen before, because it does have a few things, the only problem is they seem more like gimmicks than innovations. Another one of the main problems with the games innovation, or lack there of, is the Tom Tom missions. In the end they come off feeling like a cheap rip off of Splinter Cell, only a really cute, simplified version.
Mojo: There really isn't much mojo to be found in Blinx 2. Although you can do some cool things like dodging bullets, and freezing time the fact that you're a cat really takes away from it. The music, graphics, lack of monsters, bad story, bad voice acting, cartoony feel, and boring gameplay also help make this a fairly mojo deprived game.
Lowdown:If you were actually a fan of the original Blinx game or if you're looking for any type of platformer, Blinx 2 may be a good game to rent. Everyone else should probably steer clear of this game as it really doesn't add much to the genre, and comes off feeling like a very unforgettable experience.
Gameplay: 6, Graphics/Sound: 6, Innovation: 5, Mojo: 4. Final: 6