Yarny is back and this time, the little fellow brought along a pal. Coldwood Interactive's first installment in this franchise was a masterpiece so could the sequel improve upon such a memorable and fantastic adventure?
Unravel 2 is a very different game to the original. Whereas the first game had you control Yarny through a tricky and unforgettable journey by yourself, he now has a similar-looking friend who tags along. You can either control both characters yourself or invite a chum to join in so you can each control your very own Yarny. Although this may lead you to believe that Unravel Two is far better to play cooperatively, the truth is that it's almost as enjoyable to play through solo. The developers crafted controls and mechanics that adapt beautifully no matter which way you decide to play. For example, you can combine the Yarnys to control them simultaneously or switch between them by the tap of a button. Thankfully, the puzzles are as satisfying as ever and the new co-op mechanics open many doors for fresh and exciting kinds of puzzles. Working together to help each other past seemingly impossible situations is incredibly gratifying.
Just like its predecessor, Unravel 2 has absolutely stunning visuals that look realistic in a way that some AAA games don't even come close to. The picturesque environments are breathtaking whether you're traversing through a dimly lit factory or jumping and swimming down waterfall-filled rapids. The audio brings out the beauty of the captivating world by offering lush soundscapes that are full of gentle melodies which range from melancholy to groovy and environmental effects (such as sounds of rain and wind) that add a layer of authenticity. I must say, the folks at Coldwood Interactive certainly mastered how to make a game look and sound amazing.
The campaign in Unravel Two only consists of 7 stages. Even though that doesn't sound like much, each one can take well over half an hour to beat so you're looking at playing for at least a handful of hours just to complete the main story mode. Besides that, there are optional objectives within each stage that include finding all of a level's collectibles, finishing it without perishing, and time trials with bronze, silver, and gold medals. On top of all this, there are 20 bonus levels which pose unique challenges that'll have you scratching your head as you slowly work out just how to beat them. Overall, this is a ton of content that'll take many hours to master.
Unravel 2 improves upon the original in almost every conceivable way. My two main complaints with the first game were completely remedied in this sequel. Namely, there are no more surprise deaths and there's now a hint system so if you're ever at a loss for how to progress, you can simply tap a button to get some easy-to-follow guidance. However, one aspect of Unravel Two is a bit of a step down which is the fact that the journey in the original is a lot more memorable than the one featured here. The fact that it was an innovative concept has a lot to do with it but it's also because the sense of loneliness is missing now and there aren't as many unforgettable situations. That being said, it's such a minor complaint that if you enjoyed the first game then you'll still adore Unravel 2.
When it comes to impressive video game sequels, Unravel Two is up there with the best. Its awe-inspiring world and pitch-perfect gameplay make it one of the best 2D platformers ever created. I can't wait for Unravel Three.
- + Perfect 2D platformer gameplay that's enjoyable either solo or with a chum
- + Outstanding visuals and audio
- + Loads of replay value and challenges
- - Doesn't have as memorable of an adventure as the first game did