Worms Open Warfare 2 Review
So, these little Worms have been around for awhile. Sure, the franchise may have started on the PC, grown up there and become a favorite among young and old gamers alike. However, it has since made its way to other systems, mostly in failed attempts to recreate the magic of the PC version that so many people loved. The first Worms Open Warfare game to hit the DS was, while not absolutely horrible, wasnít quite the Worms that we are used to. Well, fellow Worms fans, rejoice! The series has managed to find its way into a set of hands that have taken the original, completely redone the game and put something out that stands head and shoulders above almost any Worms game that has been released (save for maybe Worms Armageddon), be it on consoles or on the PC.
See, it was realized that the first Open Warfare game wasnít as successful as it could have been, so things got passed on to another group of developers to help Team17 bring the game to a portable console. This time, things were done far better. Now, you can take the game online and play with people on your friends list or random games against people you donít know. There are a ton more weapons, many of which Worms fans have really wanted to see again in a 2D Worms game. Also, there have been many smaller features added that, on the surface donít seem like much, but make for an entertaining game.
The biggest feature to me is the online play. You donít have to have someone locally to play against Ė you can take the game online to play against a buddy that lives across the world, or reach out and touch someone with your Super Sheep that youíve never met before. Sure, some of the customization features donít work when playing against random people (probably because having worms names Wang and Butt would really upset parents if little Timmy ended up playing against them), but that isnít that big of a deal. The important thing is that you can take the game online. This, my friends, is the way Worms was meant to be played.
Sure, the single player can be fun. Thereís even a campaign mode this time around, with some really neat puzzles to find your way around on the boss battles. The first one, for example, has you using things like girders, blowtorches and jet packs to get to the boss and punch him off of the map. This adds a good bit of variety to the standard worms formula of shooting a bazooka or sheep across the map in an effort to hit your opponent. That part of the game feels pretty weak against the computer, sadly. Why, you may ask? Well, the computer has absolutely ridiculously good aim. They very rarely (like, maybe once a map) would miss a shot, and even then, only barely. I can understand good aim, or occasionally great aim. But the computer was constantly able to adjust to the wind and hit me with a perfect shot to knock me off the map or into a mine, while I may have taken a shot or two to adapt and be able to hit them.
Also, and probably much more interesting to some people, are the weapons. Youíll have an absolute ton of them to use Ė some familiar to Open Warfare players and some not. While I have some favorites, every player will have a couple they like and a couple they donít Ė which is totally ok, as many strategies can work in the game. Whatís neat is that, in the random games, you can end up with tons of some really strange weapons and not many of anything else. Take one map I played, where I somehow ended up with infinite blowtorches. Yes, it was pretty fun to just tunnel around that map. Finally, if youíre interested in just messing with the weapons, you can always just play around on the firing range Ė a level with no enemy Worms to worry about, just a few targets. Yes, even this can be pretty fun.
Another neat element of Open Warfare 2 is the customizability. You can change your Worm names, change the team name, or even draw a flag. Donít worry Ė as I said earlier, youíre not going to have to worry about facing off against people with vulgar team and Worm names when playing online against random people. Of course, if your buddy that you play against happens to be immature, watch out for all the vulgar Worm references that you can imagine. The more entertaining aspect of the customizability, though, comes in with the map creator. You can design your own terrain, from a flat area to test your accuracy with a missile to a maze of tunnels that you can destroy from the inside out. The map creator is probably one of my favorite features in the game.
Overall, Open Warfare 2 is a far superior product to the original Open Warfare game on the DS. You have much better multiplayer, a wider variety of weapons, and a wealth of customization options. This is the type of game you can toss in your DS and play for a few minutes on a quick bus ride or for a couple of hours on a trip. If youíre at all leary of picking up Open Warfare 2 after the lackluster opener to the series, donít fret Ė this game is the real deal.