Part 2: Act 2UPDATE
Act 2 (Baldurdash | blip.tv | Youtube | Download)
Heres where the real game begins. Like I said, I tend to think of Act 1 as an extension to the intro cutscene. This one on the other hand lets you move around freely and actually see what the games really about. As you might expect, the game still holds your hand through this level, which is good, since later on things will get pretty ruthless.
Practice area: As the name implies, this is where the game introduces its mechanics. The practice rooms with Headcase and Hangman are pretty nice, but Beaus always drives me insane. Its also cool that you can skip this section entirely if youre already familiar with the game. Mandatory tutorial sections are a royal pain in the ass in games in general, I hate it if you cant skip those. Of course, youre rewarded with secret bonus points (hereafter referred to as SBPs since Im a sucker for initialisms) when you beat them, so theres that.
Toys n the hood: This is where the game really kicks off and what a start it is. You have free movement, loads of new heads to try on enemies and a lot of mechanics to play with. This is a long chapter, one of the longest in the game. It also has more SBPs than any other stage, but they are all relatively easy to find. Not that you need them at all, theyre just there for flavor. And points.
But yeah, this is such a great level. The colours are lively and the music is pretty joyful. I love all the stuff thats going on in the background and use of props. Thats pretty much what makes this game for me: tons of small details. You can see they went to great lengths to make this game pretty and unique. The fact that theres a split path just adds to that. As for the name, many chapter names are puns or wordplays on culture items and more specifically Western ones, since they changed most of the names from the original. This level also introduces you to the basketball minigame, which is the bane of my existence. Its entirely optional, of course, and at 5 shots its not too bad. But its gonna get worse. Oh yes. So much worse. And you damn well better write those numbers down if youre going through that crap. I forgot to do that so many times I start to blubber just thinking about it. We'll see later what the reward is for dealing with them.
Mad Dog and Headdy: Keymasters are Dynamite Headdys area bosses. Theyre the lackeys of Dark Demon and they all carry a key of some sort. The game never really explains that (well, the international version doesnt anyway), but were going to see them in use later. Mad Dog is the first one we have to take down. S/hes a balloon dog with googly eyes and as easy as you might expect from a first actual boss. The best strategy is obviously to use Warhead, since you can just walk under the weak spot at the end of his tail and stand there while Warhead does all the work, but of course Slammer head works wonders as well. Just dont get Melon Head and youll be fine. Getting the SBP is a pain, since it can take several minutes (or 10 seconds) for Mad Dog to drop Bino. This will be a recurring thing in boss fights. I wish theyd made some sort of timelimit for that. Like drop the thing after 5 minutes, its not like the boss would take you that long anyway.
Heads this episode (in no particular order)
Lots of heads in this one. I meant to spread them out more evenly, but Act 2 just throws them in your face all the time and I just couldnt resist.
- Pros: Shoots rapid fire homing projectiles from your snout. Whats not to like?
- Cons: Cant grab Hangman.
- Pros: Sucks in everything on the screen, whether its an enemy or a bonus.
- Cons: Doesnt work on bosses or minibosses / cant grab hangman.
- Pros: Deals 2-3 times the damage of your vanilla head. Can take bosses down in seconds.
- Cons: None whatsoever.
- Pros: Run faster, shoot longer.
- Cons: Somewhat difficult to control.
- Pros: Fires constantly in all directions and does all your work for you; most enemies have 1 hp, so it will simply kill everything you bump into.
- Cons: None.
- Pros: Vanilla Head + Fireball barrier.
- Cons: The barrier sucks.
- Pros: Three vanilla heads instead of one. Goes through enemies instead of stopping.
- Cons: Zip.
- Pros: Enables wall climbing.
- Cons: Doesnt allow spelunking? I dont know.
- Pros: Freezes time.
- Cons: Only lasts for a few seconds.
- Pros: Replenishes your health.
- Cons: You'll wake up if someone bumps into you... But I guess thats not entirely a bad thing, now that I think about it.
- Pros: Takes you to the basketball minigame .
- Cons: Takes you to the basketball minigame .
- Pros: Youre small like an ant should be and can fit tight spaces.
- Cons: Ever try to kill an ant? Not exactly difficult. Actually, I dont think you take more damage, but youre a lot slower and your attack is really short.
- Pros: Looks hilarious.
- Cons: Slows you down, disables jumping, disables attacking, disables dropping down ledges, disables fun theres no reason to pick this up. Dont do it.
Characters this episode:
Heather - "The mysterious woman in Headdy's life. Just what is she doing with all those keys?"