Review: Feeding Frenzy 2: Shipwreck Showdown
Developer: Sprout Games/PopCap Games
Release Date: March 11th, 2010
Players: 1-4 local
What I liked:
- A good amount of levels with a great variety of multiplayer modes.
- Custom soundtrack support is always nice to have.
What I disliked:
- Not much variety within the levels, nor much of a challenge for non-casual gamers.
- If you’ve played the first game, you’ve pretty much played this one.
Feeding Frenzy 2: Shipwreck Showdown is a fairly simple game with little to it; it’s designed for casual/younger gamers, and in that regard it’s a success, I guess. Other games in the casual genre at least have enough meat to them to be entertaining no matter what kind of gamer you are, and that core “ingredient” seems to be missing in FF2.
The game starts you off as a small fish, tasking you to eat fish smaller than yourself until you grow larger and work your way up in the food chain (while trying not to be eaten yourself). You’ll grow three sizes, finish the level and repeat. There’s something undeniably fun about getting to that final size and eating all the other fish you were running from before, and it’s a good thing too since there’s hardly anything else gameplay wise to get motivated about. You have a really weird story in the single player mode about preventing an alien species from spawning, various different looking fish with a few gameplay changing powerups, and alternating fish you control, none of them being any different from one another. The levels themselves never change, save for the backgrounds and night-time modes. And after beating the sixty levels, your ultimate reward is… a new selectable fish in multiplayer mode, and a trophy. Huh.
But it’s the multiplayer mode that ultimately makes this game, with ten different “party” modes of small challenges (eat the most fish, eat each other, catch the most pearls, etc.) that last a minute or so but can be quite fun. The game has a nice structure to the multiplayer, giving players trophies and points for each round, and even having a randomized party mode to shake things up a tad (or you can do co-op missions in the story mode with another person). Up to four players can join up locally, with only leaderboard support for online.
Feeding Frenzy 2 is a game worth checking out if you have some casual gamers in the house, but it’s not all that compelling. On and on I went in the single player mode, one fish, two fish, red fish, blue fish, wondering if the gameplay would get any deeper or was indeed that shallow. The game doesn’t flounder with the local multiplayer, but the single player is a bit of a shrimp. (Please don’t forget me when the “Gaming Journalism of the Year” award nominations are being accepted.)