The Destroy All Humans! franchise is back, after the commercial success of the first game it was inevitable we'd see a sequel. Pandemic Studios have upped the ante for the second game, adding more features, changing the setting and incorporating offline co-op multiplayer. We recently had an opportunity to go hands on with Destroy All Humans 2! and we came away feeling rather impressed.
In the first Destroy All Humans! you assumed the role of Crypto, an alien form who was intent on literally destroying all humans. The sequel picks up ten years after the original game, by assuming the body of a human, Crypto is now the President of the United States. Unfortunately, there is trouble in paradise, as Crypto's mothership is blown to bits and the Russians are after him. The introduction tells this story through FMV and then you're literally thrown into the game trying to eliminate all of the Russians before they kill you.
If you've played the first game then the controls will instantly be recognisable. Thankfully, if you haven't, a few hints come up on the screen so you know what you're doing. After becoming familiar with the controls you'll find Orthopox. Orthopox is able to give you hints and provide you with weaponry. As you can imagine, the weaponry has been improved, Crypto still has access to his Zap-O-Matic but other new weapons include the dislocator and meteor. The dislocator becomes available within the first fifteen minutes of the game and it fires a small jolt of electricity that shoots your enemies in the air. If you're not happy with the weapons then you can use telekinesis to throw your enemies away or to move objects to get to hard to reach areas, Crypto can also use his trusty jet pack to fly a little in the air.
As the beginning you'll need to keep returning to Orthopox so you know what you're doing. During certain cut-scenes the game plays out like a "choose your own adventure" book where you can choose what to do or what to say to Orthopox. These choices didn't really seem to make much of a difference to the game and often you would choose something to say and then be forced to choose the other option anyway.
Just like in the first game you can take over human bodies, but it's done a little differently this time. When you're near a human all you have to do is press Y and you'll automatically "suck" into the body. If humans around see you then you'll need to hunt them down and make them do a hippie dance to forget the incident. Taking control of bodies is really easy this time around.
One of the highlights of the previous game was the flying saucer. The flying saucer is unlocked pretty quickly in Destroy All Humans! 2 and it's still a highlight. You'll need to find new datacores to unlock new weapons. There appears to be plenty of hidden content in the game that won't be available to you immediately as well. In terms of content Pandemic really have added a lot more to the game, there are more varied missions and a larger area to explore.
One of the new additions to the game is the co-op multiplayer. You can work together with a friend to achieve objectives in a mission, or if you'd rather compete then the game will keep count of how many kills you've made. Unfortunately, the game doesn't support online multiplayer at all, which is a little bit disappointing; it's possible Pandemic are testing the waters with this title though.
Destroy All Humans! 2 looks to be shaping up rather well, Pandemic have really added more of everything, which should result in a more varied and deeper game. Whilst not fundamentally different from it's predecessor Destroy All Humans 2! is a fun game that should satisfy those alien invasion urges... temporarily.