Friday, July 1, 2011

Puzzle Agent 2

With mysteries remaining in Scoggins, Minnesota detective Nelson Tethers just cannot get it out of his thoughts or the gnomes out of his nightmares, even if the case is officially considered solved. So taking vacation leave Tethers returns to Scoggins to finally bring the mystery of the forest gnomes and the missing people to a close.

Puzzle Agent 2 is most of all a sequel to Puzzle Agent, it has the same cartoony 2D hand drawn graphics, wacky plot, selection of mini-games, and starts off right where the first game ended. So if you enjoyed the first game you are likely to enjoy this one just as much but for anyone who has not played either of these games I will try to convince you in the following review.

Puzzle Agent 2, and more generally the entire series to date, is a very unique adventure/puzzle game. In addition to the normal conversation trees with NPCs and story progression there are numerous and diverse mini-games, which are the centrepiece of the entire game. There are optional puzzles and bonus puzzles, mathematical based puzzles and logical puzzles, hard puzzles and easy puzzles, as well as familiar puzzles and unknown puzzles, but all of them are at least somewhat enjoyable.

The graphics are interesting if nothing else. Quintessentially, cartoony and at least appearing to be hand drawn with minimalist jerky animation. They lend a unique visual style which is as essential as beauty, but I cannot say that they look great or even much better then good.

And equally as unique as the rest of the game, the plot of Puzzle Agent 2 is a direct sequel to Puzzle Agent. But where the first game has a freaky and strange plot already Puzzle Agent 2 takes this concept and runs with it, and it definitely keeps you on your toes. And like the graphics I cannot really say that is is a great plot; It serves to differentiate and give the Puzzle Agent world its own theme and mood, which is as important as anything else and it does make one enjoyable world.

Overall it is one of the more realistic fictional worlds. Everything just fits together, makes sense, and makes a finished product that is even better then the sum of its parts. The one bad part of the entire game is the length which, even while not using a single walkthrough or external hint, I was able to complete in under 4 hours, and I think 2 hours would be easily possible, for anyone who is not worrying about their score.

My mini-review of Puzzle Agent 2.

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