de Blob 2: The Underground Review
What if you made a game out of the 2D mini levels from the console version of de Blob 2? You'd have de Blob 2 on the DS, that's what. If you've played de Blob 2 on other platforms and loved the 2D levels, then you should by all means pick the game up on the DS and get more of that retro platforming goodness. Just be aware that the game will be relatively easy and short. For the rest of you, read on for your introduction to the colorful world of de Blob 2...
Well, actually, de Blob's world used to be colorful, before the evil INKT Corporation moved in and took over. Led by the evil Comrade Black, INKT has coated the world with a layer of dull gray paint and even forced the colorful locals, the Raydians, into gray hooded jumpsuits. While this has depressed the Raydians into compliance, it's pushed the irrepressible de Blob into action. de Blob is a, um, blob, who's naturally gray himself but possesses the unique ability to absorb color. Furthermore, once he's absorbed a color he can spread it to everything that he touches. He's a one blob wrecking crew as far as INKT is concerned.
The basics of the game will be familiar to anyone who's played platform games before – there are platforms and enemies to jump on, objects to collect, and hidden items to seek out. Where de Blob 2 departs from the traditional platformer is in its use of color. There are switches that can only be tripped and enemies that can only be defeated when de Blob is a certain color, and objectives within a level often require you to paint different things specific colors. There are even platforms that need to be tapped when de Blob is the required color in order to make them solid and usable. Adding an additional twist to all of this color-based play is that the inkbots that you need to jump on to absorb their color only come in the primary colors and you'll need to do some mixing to create the secondary colors. For example, to become green, de Blob must first turn himself yellow and then find a blue inkbot or vice-versa. Find a hidden camera in a level and once you complete the level the game moves into the real world. You'll need to use the DSi's camera to find objects of a certain color and snap pictures of them. Find them all and find the colors that they require, and you'll be rewarded with a powerful little in-game item.
The classic gameplay coupled with the color-based puzzles - along with tight, responsive controls and a bright, cartoon-like presentation - make de Blob 2 an enjoyable experience. However, the game is far from challenging. It's not "get bored with the game in fifteen minutes" kind of easy, but everyone except for the pretty young or inexperienced won't have much trouble getting through the game without losing a life or earning 100% completion. As such, a game that's already a bit on the short side will feel like it's even shorter than it is. It's fun in a retro platformer kind of way while it lasts, but you'll probably be left wishing that there was more to it.
Final Rating: 80%. If you have a soft spot for classic platform games, de Blob 2 is definitely worth a look. But although it's fun and filled with personality, it's also short and easy.