Bookworm Adventures 2


If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it- a common saying that is used everyday. This saying also feels as if it’s repeated in almost every meeting at PopCap. This is by no means a bad thing, each and every one of PopCaps games tends to spawn a sequel and usually they have only minor improvements over the originals. This can also be applied to Bookworm Adventures 2.

A relatively simple premise really, Lex the bookworm starts his day with a training session – a tutorial in how to play the game – he then follows that up with breakfast. While eating, a few famous fairytale characters dart past him and leap into a nearby book. Wanting to know what’s happening Lex follows into the fairytale world which is the first book that you will play through. The game is played over three books, Fractured Fairytales, The Monkey King and Astounding Planets. Each book has ten chapters and you need to beat grunts and bosses through each book.

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PopCap are known for simple and playable games and Bookworm Adventures 2 is just that. You control the actions of Lex, each punch he throws or attack he makes is a result of your spelling of words. Using a 16 tile grid of random letters you must make up words, the bigger they are, the more damage they will cause to your enemy. If you make a long and damaging word you will be rewarded with one of your letters being given a power up. Each of the different colours is a power up, you can heal yourself with green, burn your foe with red and many more. You will also pick up health, strength and ailment curing potions which can be used however you need to. As you play through the adventures Lex will level up after gaining experience points from his battles, with each level you will be granted anything from an extra health heart to stronger defence.

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Now even though Bookworm Adventures 2 is a simple game in concept and a simple game to play, it’s a very difficult game in practice. Even if you are a clever beast and are able to spell many words, luck is a big factor here as the letters in the grid fill up. You aren’t always given the best letters, so on some rounds you may hit nine letter words but in the next round you may only get a four. This is where the scramble button comes in handy which gives you 16 new letters to try, press it as often as you like, but your enemy will hit you each time you press it. There are a certain amount of tactics to be used, when to use your potions and when to use that big word that you can see.

All of these features will be familiar to players of the first game but there are some new things to look out for. New power downs are thrown at you by the enemies, useful letters are turned into Z’s or Qu’s, potions are stolen from you as they hit you and damage can be reflected back as you launch attacks at them. Another major feature is the sidekicks that accompany you throughout the game. In between chapters you can choose equipment that will help you on your journey, items that nullify stun attacks, add damage to your hits or even boost the power up tiles. But, now you can take creatures with you to help, Mother Goose will lay a health potion for you every four turns and the Chesire Cat will nullify and ailments again, every four turns.

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All of these new features can be added to the new mini games, achievement system and the infinite replay mode. So this is no small step in between games. Bookworm Adventures 2 is a great game to tax your mind but also offer traditional gameplay features similar to an RPG. This game, like the first, is perfect for anyone who is a fan of word games or playing around with letters. It may be punishing at times but with each eight or nine letter word that you spell, you will feel pride. This game offers so much for so little, costing just £14.95 this game will last you forever. With enjoyable gameplay and tremendous humour everyone can enjoy Bookworm Adventures 2. PopCap just keep knocking out great games, can you spell W-I-N-N-E-R?

Hi-Score – Great game mechanic, superb RPG elements, Addictive

Lo-Score – Can be very hard

Final Score – 9 out of 10

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