Adventures of Lolo 2

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US cover.

Adventures of Lolo 2 is a block pushing puzzle video game developed and published by HAL Laboratory for the Nintendo Entertainment System on 1990-03-20 as the seventh game in the Eggerland series. This game was also not released in Japan. Instead, Japan first saw a game titled Adventures of Lolo which is where this game's interface comes from, but the titles uses mostly different maps.

In the game, you play as Lolo, a fuzzy blue ball having just rescued Princess Lala, from Great Devil. Unfortunately, just as Lolo returned her safely to Eden, the evil King of Eggerland kidnapped her again and took her to his tower. You must guide Lolo through another 50 rooms, each filled with deadly monsters that can only be defeated by a jewel locked in a chest. By collecting all of the heart framers in the room, Lolo can unlock the chest, and move on to the next room. But, reaching each heart framer requires skillful navigation around the hazards and a lot of forethought.

Personal

Adventures of Lolo 2 was actually the first game in the series I saw. I read about it from a poorly written NES strategy guide from 1990. From the screenshots, I could tell it was a puzzle game, and it looked a little interesting, but none of my friends had the game, so I never played it. In the late 1990s, when I learned about NES emulation, I tried the first Adventures of Lolo, and didn't find it very appealing. The second and third games looked identical, so I ignored them as well. After I finally gave the first game a fair shake and beat it, I decided to try the second game as well. I beat it on 2022-02-09.

Status

I don't own this game, but I've beaten it.

Review

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4 4 5 5 5

Best Version: NES

— This section contains spoilers! —

Good

  • The game presents you with a whole new 50 maps, many of which are very tricky and require you to figure out new skills not learned in the first game. For example, rotating an arrow tile even when an emerald framer is atop it. There were a bunch of levels where I was convinced that they weren't possible at first, and it wasn't until I fiddling around with the maps for several minutes that I finally discovered the new aspect of the game needed to solve it.
  • The game's art and music are both fitting.
  • The intro and ending sequences are both attractive.
  • The ugly interface from the first game has been replaced by more attractive graphics.
  • The inclusion of four additional pro levels (passwords PROA - PROD) adds a bit of replay, though I don't see how anyone would find them without having to be told.

Bad

  • This was a problem in the first game, but I didn't write about it then because it didn't come up as often, but it happens a lot more in this game, so I'll mention it now. I don't like that you can't see the water's current; pushing a ball into the water is the only way to see how it will move. Usually puzzle games allow for a player with enough forethought to be guaranteed victory, but, since you can't know what the water will do until you try it, and a single mistake means death, only the extremely lucky will be able to beat a water map on their first try.
  • Because you can shoot his fireballs, and they only spawn on main vertical lines, the end boss cannot even hit you as long as you keep firing.
  • All of the same problems from the first game are still here. Lives are meaningless, levels progression is linear, the title doesn't fit, and there's yet another damsel in distress.

Ugly

  • Most of the game's media is identical to the first. The background graphics are the same (until the very end), all the monsters function the same and some even use the exact same graphics, the power-ups are all the same, a lot of the audio is reused, even they layout of the UI is the same. This is not a sequel, it's a level pack. That may have been acceptable on home computers, where it could be sold with a discounted price, but, on the NES, it had to be sold as a full, and therefore overpriced, game. The developers should have put forth more effort to make this title unique, instead, it was probably an expensive disappointment to a lot of people.
  • The first game slowly ramped up the difficulty which is good game design, but Adventures of Lolo 2 only gives a few beginner levels before becoming significantly more difficult. If a player started with this title, and didn't learn the tricks from the first game, they may find themselves overwhelmed as early as the second floor.
  • Just like in the first game, a single step in the wrong direction can make a room unwinnable. However, the puzzles in the first game were mostly about taking your time to figure out a complicated puzzle, while this game has a lot more levels which require you to do this while constantly dodging monsters or, even worse, they require very accurate timing. This made the game a lot less enjoyable for me than the first.
  • Ordinarily, if you shoot a monster away, then put an emerald framer over its spawn point, it won't respawn. However, in several levels later in the game, doing this causes a monster to respawn in a different location, and the map requires you to do this to finish the level. This is very bad game design. A game should never change established rules without any indication. The only reason I figured it out was because, up until that level, I had never placed a emerald framer over a monster's spawn point before, so I didn't yet know it was a rule. Had I been aware of the rule that enemies typically don't respawn in this manner, I probably would have become stuck.

Media

Box Art

Both the US and European covers use this same art. It shows Lolo jumping out of the King of Eggerland's grasp while Princess Lala is clutched by him in his tower and a golden ship sails through the air. I think it greatly oversells the adventure aspect of the game.

Documentation

Maps

Videos

Longplay.

Credits

The game doesn't contain credits, and only some of the staff has been determined.

Roles Staff
Music Composer (uncredited) Hideki Kanazashi
Music Programmer (uncredited) Hiroaki Suga

Links

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