Ads are gone. We're using Patreon to raise funds so we can grow. Please pledge support today!
Google+   Facebook button  Twitter button 
3DS | DS | PS3 | PS4 | PSP | VITA | WII | WIIU | X360 | XB1 | All
Adventures of Lolo 2 (NES) artwork

Adventures of Lolo 2 (NES) review


"I would ordinarily slate a game for making almost no changes. However, there's something magical about Lolo that retains the freshness even after you've played the living crap out of the first one. It could be that there are so many stimuli to work with that the possibilities for new and more challenging levels are limitless. Instead of attaching new gameplay features, Hal focused on turning up the difficulty and giving you more of the same worries and problems, yet trickier puzzles. "



Adventures of Lolo 2 asset


In the dead of night, the massive form of Egger, presumed dead, appears to Princess Lala. Fear and incredulity paralyze her, allowing the beast to abscond with her to a far off tower. Her only hope lies with Lolo, the blue puff ball responsible for Egger's previous defeat. The only way to get to Lala is to climb the tower of solvable, yet mind-boggling puzzles and take Egger down.

Sound familiar? The plot isn't the only thing Adventures of Lolo 2 borrows from its predecessor. Everything--enemies, hazards, gameplay, obstacles--returns in the sequel down to the slightest detail. There are no new items or enemies or hazards in Lolo 2; just the same gameplay that made the original a hair-pulling puzzle epic.

I would ordinarily slate a game for making almost no changes. However, there's something magical about Lolo that retains the freshness even after you've played the living crap out of the first one. It could be that there are so many stimuli to work with that the possibilities for new and more challenging levels are limitless. Instead of attaching new gameplay features, Hal focused on turning up the difficulty and giving you more of the same worries and problems, yet trickier puzzles.

Adventures of Lolo 2 screenshotFor those of you that need a refresher, every level consists of a single grid-based screen filled with enemies, pushable blocks, hearts, and environmental hazards and obstacles. Collect all of the hearts to open a treasure chest, raid the chest for a key that unlocks a door, run through the door and it's on to the next one.

Sound easy? Ha! I thought so in my days of sanity before I discovered Lolo 2. Everything evil hates Lolo and wishes death upon him. It doesn't matter that the rogues gallery consists of doe-eyed dragons that burn him alive or cute armadillos that crush his little puff ball body. They want Lolo dead. He doesn't run and jump like Mario, nor is he a vampire-slaying badass like Simon. He runs at a steady speed, square by square, and lacks the ability to perform skillful dodging or deadly combat. All he's got at his disposal are your wits.

Push a block in front of the dragon and his breath is ineffective. Grab the right heart and you'll gain some projectile shots. Don't get excited. The projectiles don't make a bloody mess of you adversaries, but turn them into eggs that you can push around. Fire another shot at it to “kill” the enemy temporarily. Shove that egg into water and it acts as a flotation device.

Many of you out there realize that I could copy and paste those last few paragraphs and stick them on any Lolo game and it would be 100% accurate. The system isn't broken, so Hal didn't fix it. Unfortunately, Lolo 2 doesn't expand at all on the concept because of this. Fortunately, it didn't have to. It made up for lack of expansion by crushing your skull with its difficulty.

The further you get into Lolo 2, the more you have to consider what you're doing. It demands a fair amount of tinkering, thinking outside the box, trial and error, and some bravery. Several levels require you to use a single block to cover two enemies simultaneously. All of the experimentation leading up to that will drive you nuts. Other levels require perfect timing. You have to shoot an enemy just the right time and use him to block a medusa's view, hoping he won't hatch and run away, leaving you vulnerable. There are some stages where you have to keep pace with a running enemy to use him as cover from those medusas.

Adventures of Lolo 2 screenshotOh, those damned medusas. Walk in front of one without proper coverage and it's instant death. I only scoff at how overused they are in this one. Many levels revolve around blocking medusas. While there are a few different ways this scenario plays out, it becomes repetitive having to push blocks to keep the same enemy from killing you each time. Perhaps this is where new enemies and expansion would have been a great idea. The fifty level length doesn't help its cause, either. That's a whole lot of medusa blocking you've got to do. By the time you reach 10-5, you might grow weary of the game. This is this sort of game that's best left short and sweet. Having passwords softens the blow and makes the length a small issue, but at least the final stage has somewhat of a payoff.

The only expanded part (apart from graphical improvements) lies at the end. The game doesn't close with a dull cutscene like the previous one, but thrusts you into a final battle with Egger himself. The only downside is that the battle is one of the easiest parts of the game, and feels more tacked on than planned out. That's not something I usually say about a Lolo game. Even still, fighting an actual boss adds and element to the series that should have been present since the beginning; something which would have broken up the constant puzzling and added some variety to the game, if only they had included multiple boss battles.

For a sequel bereft of expansion, Adventures of Lolo 2 is a solid title. It delivers to fans what they wanted all along, the same stuff that made the original an addictive masterpiece. However, it's also too “safe”. Why not be daring? Why not step outside the box and not burn out your fans with the same thing? I'm not saying totally change up the system, but put the same gameplay out and people are bound to get tired of it. Regardless, Lolo 2 profits from its intuitive gameplay and rough challenge. It's one of the few cases were a sequel can succeed without expansion.

Rating: 7/10

JoeTheDestroyer's avatar
Community review by JoeTheDestroyer (July 23, 2011)

Rumor has it that Joe is not actually a man, but a machine that likes video games, horror movies, and long walks on the beach. His/Its first contribution to HonestGamers was a review of Breath of Fire III.

More Reviews by JoeTheDestroyer
X-Men (Arcade) artwork
X-Men (Arcade)

X-CHICKEN!!!
MirrorMoon EP (PC) artwork
MirrorMoon EP (PC)

Dear Esther in SPAAAAAAAAAAACE!
Draw a Stickman: EPIC (PC) artwork
Draw a Stickman: EPIC (PC)

It's official: we've killed the word 'epic'. Nice going, guys.

Feedback

If you enjoyed this Adventures of Lolo 2 review, you're encouraged to discuss it with the author and with other members of the site's community. If you don't already have an HonestGamers account, you can sign up for one in a snap. Thank you for reading!

board icon
honestgamer posted July 23, 2011:

This was a terrific review, Joe, one of my favorite retro reviews that you've written. There was a place in the middle where you repeated the bit about the game crushing you with its difficulty (when you had already made that point) that felt a bit repetitive, but otherwise I probably wouldn't change a thing. You did a good job covering the basics for those who are unfamiliar (like me) and you made the game sound intriguing but imperfect. It strikes me as something a lot like Kickle Cubicle, which I actually have played. In any event, I'm glad that you keep writing such competent reviews for the old NES classics. It tempts me to do more of that sort of thing myself.
board icon
JoeTheDestroyer posted July 24, 2011:

Thanks, Jason!

I like the Lolo games more than Kickle Cubicle. It's been years since I've played that one, and I have wanted to revisit and re-review it. I don't think my rating is going to be quite as high as it was before (I think I gave it a 7/10 at GF). It's not a game that aged terribly well.

You must be signed into an HonestGamers user account to leave feedback on this review.

Info | Help | Privacy Policy | Contact | Links

eXTReMe Tracker
© 1998-2014 HonestGamers
None of the material contained within this site may be reproduced in any conceivable fashion without permission from the author(s) of said material. This site is not sponsored or endorsed by Nintendo, Sega, Sony, Microsoft, or any other such party. Adventures of Lolo 2 is a registered trademark of its copyright holder. This site makes no claim to Adventures of Lolo 2, its characters, screenshots, artwork, music, or any intellectual property contained within. Opinions expressed on this site do not necessarily represent the opinion of site staff or sponsors.