Zool 2

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Zool 2
Amiga Zool 2 cover art.jpg
Original Amiga cover art
Developer(s)The Warp Factory
Gremlin Graphics (MS-DOS)
Imagitec Design (Jaguar)
Publisher(s)
Producer(s)Peter J. Cook
Designer(s)Ed Campbell
Programmer(s)Andy Findlay
Writer(s)Steven McKevitt
Composer(s)Neil Biggin
Patrick Phelan
SeriesZool
Platform(s)Amiga, Amiga CD32, Atari Jaguar, BlackBerry, MS-DOS
Release
Genre(s)Platform
Mode(s)Single-player, multiplayer (up to two players)

Zool 2 is a platform video game originally developed by The Warp Factory and published by Gremlin Graphics for the Amiga in 1993. It is the sequel to the original Zool, which was released earlier in 1992 on various platforms.

When the forces of Krool are wreaking havoc upon the Nth Dimension with the help from his henchman Mental Block, the intergalactic gremlin ninja Zool alongside his female companion Zooz and their two-headed dog Zoon, are entrusted with the task of stopping Mental Block and restore order to the dimension. Originally released for the Amiga microcomputers, Zool 2 was later ported to the Amiga CD32, MS-DOS, and Atari Jaguar platforms, with the latter being published by Atari Corporation in North America and Europe,[1][2] in addition of being published in Japan by Mumin Corporation on April 21, 1995.[3]

When it was originally released for the Amiga, Zool 2 received positive reception from critics who praised the graphics, sound department and gameplay, with some considering it as an improvement over the first game. Other ports of the game received similarly positive reception from reviewers, while the Jaguar version received mixed reviews from critics since its release and has sold nearly 11,000 copies as of April 1, 1995, though it is unknown how many were sold in total during its lifetime.[4]

Gameplay[edit]

Screenshot from the Amiga version.

Zool 2 is a side-scrolling platform game that plays very similarly like its predecessor, Zool.[5] Both Zool and his female counterpart, Zooz, almost share the same move set between each other but there are some subtle differences with the two characters in terms of their abilities and means of defense. Whereas Zool attacks with projectiles, Zooz is armed with a energy whip for close quarters combat, along with the ability of shooting projectiles as well. In addition, each character is capable of destroying certain parts of the scenery that the other one could not, and vice versa, resulting in a slightly different route through the levels. As with the original game, the sequel features several minigames, such as a version of Breakout which involves using Zoon, the two-headed morphing pet dog of Zool and Zooz, as a paddle in order to keep the ball in play by bouncing it upwards. The progression system acts similarly to the original game, which involves the player in collecting a set number of items in order to advance into the next level. The game also features a two-player mode.

Plot[edit]

Zool 2 takes place several months after the events occurred in Zool.[5] Krool, the main antagonist of the original game has sent his forces and Mental Block, his shapeshifting henchman to invade upon the Nth Dimension and seize power in order to stifle the imagination of the world, causing rampant boredom in the process. Zool, the main protagonist of the first game, alongside his companion Zooz and their two-headed mascot Zoon, are entrusted with the mission of restoring order to the dimension and defeat Mental Block.[5] After traversing through multiple locations, the trio reaches the main area where Mental Block resides and they defeat him, saving the dimension as a result, with a hint at a possible further sequel.[6]

Development and release[edit]

The Amiga remained the lead format for the second Zool game, but unlike the first it was not widely ported to the other platforms, only the Atari Jaguar and DOS. The game had originally been planned to be bundled with the Amiga CD32 at the request of Commodore, but when Gremlin Graphics failed to reach the deadline, Zool 2 was bundled with the Amiga 1200's Computer Combat pack in 1994.[7] The PC version of the game was also re-released as part of the Windows-based compilation CD Best of Gremlin in 2000. The Jaguar version of Zool 2 was developed by Imagitec Design and was first showcased to the public at SCES '94 in a playable state.[8][9]

Reception[edit]

Reception
Aggregate scores
Aggregator Scores
Amiga CD32 MS-DOS Jaguar
GameRankings N/A N/A N/A 65%[10]
Review scores
Publication Scores
Amiga CD32 MS-DOS Jaguar
ASM 10 / 12[11]
(A1200) 10 / 12[12]
11 / 12[13] N/A N/A
AllGame N/A N/A 2.5/5 stars[14] 2/5 stars[15]
Amiga Computing 90%[16] N/A N/A N/A
Amiga Format 93%[17] N/A N/A N/A
Amiga Joker 80%[18]
(A1200) 77%[19]
85%[20] N/A N/A
Amiga Power 86%[21] N/A N/A N/A
CU Amiga 76%[22] N/A N/A N/A
Consoles + N/A N/A N/A 84%[23]
EGM N/A N/A N/A 33 / 50[24]
GameFan N/A N/A N/A 243 / 300[25]
Game Players N/A N/A N/A 78%[26]
GamePro N/A N/A N/A 17.5 / 20[27]
Jaguar N/A N/A N/A 55%[28]
MAN!AC N/A N/A N/A 55%[29]
Mega Fun N/A N/A N/A 65%[30]
Next Generation N/A N/A N/A 3/5 stars[31]
PC Joker N/A N/A 85%[32] N/A
PC Player N/A N/A 69%[33] N/A
Player One N/A N/A N/A 60%[34]
Play Time 79 / 100[35]
(A1200) 80%[36]
83%[37] 67 / 100[38] 65%[39]
Score N/A N/A 79%[40] N/A
ST-Computer N/A N/A N/A 60%[41]
Video Games N/A 71%[42] N/A 71%[43]
VideoGames N/A N/A N/A 6 / 10[44]

The Amiga versions of Zool 2 received generally high review scores, including 93% in Amiga Format, 90% in Amiga Computing, 86% in Amiga Power and 76% in CU Amiga.

GamePro gave the Jaguar version a positive review, saying that the varied abilities of the playable characters "push this game to the top of the Jaguar hop-n-bop ranks." GamePro also praised the graphics, stating that "Zool's Nth Dimension is a shiny, inventive world that's equal parts candy shop and toy store", and that the Jaguar version is sharper and brighter than previous versions of the game.[27] Next Generation called it "still a basic platform game, but one of the best we've seen a while." Like GamePro, they praised the quality of the graphics, and additionally the large number of interesting powerups and stages.[31] Mike Weigand of Electronic Gaming Monthly assessed it as "a pretty good version of the pint-sized ninja character", particularly noting the large levels, though he felt the graphics were sometimes "visual overkill."[24]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "ATARI RELEASES MORE JAGUAR GAME TITLES; FIVE NEW GAMES AVAILABLE FOR HOLIDAY GIVING". Nine Lives. December 9, 1994. Archived from the original on 21 November 2001. Retrieved 2018-10-27.
  2. ^ Castle, Justin (July 21, 2018). "Historical Atari Jaguar UK Magazine Advert/Reviews Collection" (PDF). Issuu. p. 340. Retrieved 2018-10-27.
  3. ^ "JAGUAR Soft > 1994-1995". GAME Data Room (in Japanese). Archived from the original on 2018-08-25. Retrieved 2018-10-27.
  4. ^ "Atari Jaguar Lifetime Sales". betaphasegames.com. Archived from the original on 24 August 2017. Retrieved 2018-10-27.
  5. ^ a b c Zool 2 game manual (Atari Jaguar, US)
  6. ^ "Ending for Zool 2 (Atari Jaguar)". vgmuseum.com. Retrieved 2018-10-27.
  7. ^ A1200 Computer Combat
  8. ^ doctorclu (August 9, 2009). "Trevor Raynsford: Programmer and the porter of Zool 2". freejag.atari.org. Archived from the original on 28 October 2018. Retrieved 2018-10-27.
  9. ^ BiffsGamingVideos (November 8, 2011). 1994 SCES: Parts 01-12 (Atari, Llamasoft, 4Play) (58min 12sec). YouTube.
  10. ^ "Zool 2 for Jaguar". GameRankings. Retrieved 2018-10-21.
  11. ^ "Review - Zool 2 - Die Rückkehr des ninja". ASM (in German). No. 84. Tronic Verlag. February 1994. p. 24.
  12. ^ "Replay - Amiga 1200 - Zool 2". ASM (in German). No. 89. Tronic Verlag. July 1994. p. 120.
  13. ^ "Neue Amiga-CD32-Software - ...Und Es Dreht Sich Doch! - Zool 2". ASM (in German). No. 90. Tronic Verlag. August 1994. p. 91.
  14. ^ "Zool 2 (MS-DOS) - Overview". AllGame. Archived from the original on 14 November 2014. Retrieved 2018-10-24.
  15. ^ Scoleri III, Joseph. "Zool 2 (Jaguar) - Overview". AllGame. Archived from the original on 14 November 2014. Retrieved 2018-10-24.
  16. ^ Hackett, Tina (February 1994). "Zool 2 - Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it's the return of the ninja from the nth dimension and this time he's got company". Amiga Computing. No. 70. Europress, IDG Media. p. 135.
  17. ^ Dyson, Marcus (January 1994). "Game Review - Zool 2". Amiga Format. No. 55. Future Publishing. pp. 76–77.
  18. ^ Löwenstein, Richard (January 1994). "Zool 2". Amiga Joker (in German). No. 43. Joker-Verlag. p. 18.
  19. ^ Stoschek, Monika (May 1994). "Zool 2 - Das Dimensionsloch - A 1200 Speziell". Amiga Joker (in German). No. 47. Joker-Verlag. p. 92.
  20. ^ Stoschek, Monika (July 1994). "Amiga CD-Joker - Zool 2 - Zool ist cool!". Amiga Joker (in German). No. 48. Joker-Verlag. p. 73.
  21. ^ McGill, Steve (January 1994). "Game Reviews - Zool 2". Amiga Power. No. 33. Future Publishing. pp. 35–37.
  22. ^ Sloan, Jon (January 1994). "Game Review - Zool 2". CU Amiga. No. 47. EMAP. p. 89.
  23. ^ Boissarie, Véronique (January 1995). "Jaguar Review - Zool 2". Consoles + (in French). No. 39. M.E.R.7. p. 99.
  24. ^ a b "Review Crew - Major Mike's Game Roundup - Zool 2". Electronic Gaming Monthly. No. 67. EGM Media, LLC. February 1995. p. 36.
  25. ^ "Viewpoint - Zool - Jaguar". GameFan. No. Volume 3, Issue 1. Shinno Media. January 1995. p. 25.
  26. ^ "News - 3DO/Jaguar - Zool 2". Game Players. No. 69. Signal Research. March 1995. p. 20.
  27. ^ a b Squideo, Captain (February 1995). "ProReview: Zool 2". GamePro. No. 67. IDG. p. 100.
  28. ^ Felske, Niclas (March 1995). "Jaguar - Ärger in der n-ten Dimension - Zool 2". Jaguar (in German). No. 2. Falke Verlag. p. 15.
  29. ^ "Spiele-Tests - Zool 2". MAN!AC (in German). No. 17. Cybermedia Verlagsgesellschaft mbH. March 1995. p. 72.
  30. ^ Appel, Markus (February 1995). "Test Jaguar – Zool 2". Mega Fun (in German). No. 29. CT Computec Verlag GmbH & Co. KG. p. 109.
  31. ^ a b "Finals - Jaguar - Zool 2". Next Generation. No. 3. Imagine Media. March 1995. p. 91.
  32. ^ Stoschek, Monika (October 1994). "Action Section - Games Für Flinhe Finger - Zool 2 - Zool ist cool!". PC Joker (in German). No. 25. Joker-Verlag. p. 82.
  33. ^ Lenhardt, Heinrich (October 1994). "Spiele-Test - Zool 2 - Noch einmal ins Gewühl: Eines der schnellsten Plattformspiele erlebt seine technisch beeindruckende Neuauflage". PC Player (in German). No. 22. Future Verlag. p. 98.
  34. ^ Bubu (January 1995). "Vite Vu - Jaguar - Zool 2". Player One (in French). No. 49. Média Système Édition. p. 114.
  35. ^ Gerhardt, Roland (February 1994). "Amiga Reviews - Zool 2". Play Time (in German). No. 32. CT Computec Verlag GmbH & Co. KG. p. 50.
  36. ^ Ippisch, Hans (August 1994). "Amiga Reviews - Zool 2". Play Time (in German). No. 38. CT Computec Verlag GmbH & Co. KG. p. 129.
  37. ^ Ippisch, Hans (August 1994). "Amiga CD 32 Reviews - Zool 2". Play Time (in German). No. 38. CT Computec Verlag GmbH & Co. KG. p. 129.
  38. ^ Maueröder, Petra (October 1994). "PC Reviews - Zool 2". Play Time (in German). No. 40. CT Computec Verlag GmbH & Co. KG. p. 45.
  39. ^ Girlich, Stephan (March 1995). "Jaguar Reviews - Zool 2". Play Time (in German). No. 45. CT Computec Verlag GmbH & Co. KG. p. 119.
  40. ^ Formánková, Irena (October 1994). "Recenze - Zool 2 - Hopsá, hopsá, šmik sem - housenka mrtvá, šmirk tam, sardinka to má za sebou". Score (in Czech). No. 10. Omega Publishing Group. p. 21.
  41. ^ F, R (March 1995). "Jaguar: Zool 2". ST-Computer (in German). No. 107. falkemedia. p. 95.
  42. ^ Schaedle, Wolfgang (August 1994). "Rom Check - CD32 - Zool 2". Video Games (in German). No. 33. Future-Verlag. p. 82.
  43. ^ Zengerle, Robert (February 1995). "Atari Jaguar - Reviews - Zool 2". Video Games (in German). No. 39. Future-Verlag. p. 90.
  44. ^ Hallock, Betty (March 1995). "Zool 2 - Watch Out For Those Eggs On Legs". VideoGames - The Ultimate Gaming Magazine. No. 74. L.F.P., Inc. p. 76.

External links[edit]