The 1960s wasn't just a time for peace, love, rock-and-roll, and hair that went years without a cutting. No, the 1960s marked a much more historical event in human history. It was the period in which our beloved Furons got their groove back; found an old friend who had left without notice; rediscovered a companion who was always just an arm's length away. Yes, in the 1960s, after years and years of cloning and radioactive exposure, the Furons have finally rediscovered their genitalia, and only with a game like Destroy All Humans! 2, could I get away with an opening paragraph like that.
Hitting store shelves later this year for PlayStation 2 and Xbox, Pandemic is once again putting players in the shoes of the four-feet tall big-headed bad ass Crypto, who has once again arrived on Earth in an attempt to take it over, and collect a little Furon DNA while he's at it. Although Pandemic must be pleased with the success of the original - launching a successful original franchise isn't easy - the team was obviously aware of the areas in which the series needed improvement.
Set in the 1960s this time as opposed to the 50s from Crypto's first outing, DAH!2 takes place in countries across the globe, including Russia, Tokyo, London, and throughout the U.S. as well. The number of locations pretty much sums up DAH!2 in a nutshell; the game's BIG, and I rarely use all caps to describe something. So while your over-the-top stereotypes and tongue-in-cheek humour is definitely back, not to mention plenty of B-movie quips, this time you'll have a wider variety of weaponry and mental powers at your disposal, a brand spanking new saucer to cruise around in, and plenty of land to wreak havoc on. Sound good? You bet.
Being a fan of the original, I was glad to hear Pandemic was expanding upon Crypto's arsenal, as that was one of my biggest complaints about the first title. Though the standard set of weapons return - blasters, anal probes, and the like - Pandemic has given Crypto eight new weapons to choose from, each of which can be upgraded five times, to help regulate the hippy epidemic.
For starters, Crypto now has access to the very cool Gravity Gun, which as you would expect, allows him to pick up and toss around objects, humans, and even nearby vehicles - as shown in the demo. Further to the Gravity Gun, Crypto has access to the Disc Locator, which sends a plasma shot in random directions destroying everything in its wake. My personal favourite, though, has to be the Meteor Strike. This charged weapon calls upon a massive meteor in the sky to come crashing down from space, annihilating everything in the vicinity of the 50-feet wide rock.
What about the saucer attacks? Disappointingly, there's still only a handful, but all of the attacks from the original return, with the addition of one unique twist: Crypto can call upon any of these attacks at any time while on foot - nice. And of course, everything in the game world is completely destructible as well. So that sweet alien death ray can topple any building you target - equally as nice.
Additionally, remember how in the first game Crypto could only control the body of a human? Not the case this time, Crypto now has the ability to actually become his host, meaning you no longer have to spend precious game time finding a suitable hiding place before you take control.
Another big difference between the original and DAH!2 is its open mission structure and sheer size of the game world itself. That means, no more loading times - just hours and hours of seamless chaos while running around and taking missions GTA style. So while the first game had you accepting missions before entering Earth's atmosphere, this time around you're plopped right down into the gameworld and have to decide for yourself which missions to accept.
The level I was shown was set somewhere in the U.S. and was still very early in development, with graphics that still needed a bit of tweaking, and a few kinks here and there to work out. Pandemic has proven it's more than capable though, so with them at the helm of the game's production, we can certainly all sleep easy. We eagerly await the Furon invasion later this year.