Drinkbox’s Mexican-inspired Metroidvania goodness returns in Guacamelee! 2 and brings with it even more characters, colorful settings, and, yes, chickens! We had a chance to try out a demo of the game at PAX East and can happily say the game picks up right after the first one left off and expands what made it so much fun in the first place.
Picking up seven years after he saved Mexico from an evil menace, the sequel follows luchador Juan Aguacate on a quest to save the entire world. As you progress through the game, you will unlock special abilities and fighting moves, which amp up your combos but also allow you to reach areas you couldn’t the first time you passed them. This is where the Metroidvania component of the game comes into play, and there are far more abilities to discover this time around too. We didn’t get to see this feature in action, but you’ll now also be able to customize Juan’s abilities to suit your playstyle.
The demo we played had us making our way through areas where we had to rely on our reflexes to grapple on to points on the map and fling our way upwards. This “eagle boost” took some getting used to, but be prepared to master this skill when you are running away from enemies and even stage mechanics that play with different dimensions and bring forth unique platforming challenges.
Another familiar concept is the ability to transform into a chicken to squeeze through various paths. This time, your chicken self has more power and unique abilities—even transforming into a monster bird to stomp everyone around you. You’ll need to swap to and from your chicken form often to solve special platforming puzzles too, adding to the game’s varied gameplay.
Up to four people can play together in couch co-op, which is a blessing to those who aren’t that confident with platformers. Even if only one person reaches the exit, everyone instantly teleports to the next checkpoint making it easy for players to help one another when the game’s difficulty kicks up, which very well does during some group encounters and boss fights.
Judging by what we played, Guacamelee! 2 is set to be a strong sequel filled with even more humor, strong platforming, and plenty of levels that will mesmerize and challenge you too. Look for the game on PlayStation 4 and Steam sometime soon!