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Spyro 2: Ripto’s Rage! – PlayStation

Spyro 2: Ripto’s Rage! – PlayStation

Spyro 2Platform: PlayStation

Release Date: November 2, 1999

Developer: Insomniac Games

Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment America

Genre: Action/Adventure, Platforming

Nerd Rating: 8.7 out of 10

Reviewed by Budroo

Spyro 2: Ripto’s Rage! is a mystical adventure where you play a small, but powerful dragon in charge of saving the land of Avalar. It has aesthetically pleasing graphics for its time, a catchy soundtrack, addicting platform/action style gameplay, a storyline that allows you to connect with the characters, and plenty of different types of challenges for you to attempt. It’s rated an 8.5/10 or higher by most major game reviewers, and rightfully so.

Basically, the story goes that Avalar is under attack because an evil creature (with a sour attitude) named Ripto has been accidentally released into the realm by a scientist who created some sort of portal. The scientist uses his portal to summon Spyro because he now needs help in keeping his land safe.

Spyro 2

Spyro is a little dragon that packs a punch. He can spit fire, charge, climb, jump, glide, and hover. There are also power-ups scattered around the game that allow Spyro to spit fireballs, charge at hyper-speed, and fly. The power-ups aren’t a huge part of the game but boy are they fun. You can take enemies out almost laughably when charged up. Fireballs shoot out of Spyro’s mouth as rapidly as you please, penetrating any armor type there is (fireballs also allow Spyro to blast open armored chests filled with gems). Also, charging an enemy at hyper-speed sends them flying off into oblivion with ease. The flying power-up is more of a convenience thing. It allows you to access more of the map without having to worry about which platform to jump to.

Spyro 2: Ripto’s Rage! is a great game to pick up for twenty minutes or so and then put back down (it can also be the type of game you play for hours on a rainy day). On a busy day, a level or two does just fine. On a day when you have more time to spare, it’s easy to spend a few hours completing a mini-world. The more time you put into this game, the more gems and orbs you’ll gain.

Spyro 2

The controls and gameplay stay simple, so don’t worry about straining your mind too much (X is jump/glide, Square is charge, Circle is breathe fire, Triangle is hover). Some games these days are great because they’re so advanced but it’s also nice to sometimes play a game that requires less thinking, such as Spyro. The virtual environment puts you in a relaxed mood almost immediately and there’s no rush once you enter the world of Avalar. Animations are pleasing for its time; there are many things to interact with on each map (alive or dead). Feel free to explore the landscape and search for hidden gems or even speedway levels.

Spyro 2

The speedway levels are one of the best parts of the game. There are three of them. Each one has its own side quest, but your main objective upon entering them is to fly around and hit all the targets in a certain time limit. It’s difficult, but not too difficult, kind of like the game in general. Spyro can be a challenge at times but it won’t have you throwing your controller.

Combat is simplistic for the most part. A little more strategy is required to defeat bosses. Other than that, it’s usually a matter of whether or not to char an enemy with your fire breath or charge it off the map with your horns.

Spyro 2

There are four mini-realms inside of Avalar, the third being where you encounter the final boss and the fourth being a sort of reward for your efforts. On a basic level, the objective is to collect gems, orbs, and talismans in order to make it further. Gems are all over the place, whereas orbs and talismans are earned through your hard work.

Spyro 2

Gems are used to unlock new abilities and certain areas. There’s a character you’ll encounter multiples times named Moneybags. He’s a big, fat bear in Monopoly man (AKA Rich Uncle Pennybags) attire. He’s the one who teaches you new abilities and grants you access to certain areas, but you’ll quickly learn that his prices are unfair.

Spyro 2

Orbs are awarded at the completion of side-quests. You’ll need to collect a certain number of orbs before the final boss battle in the third mini-realm is unlocked.

Spyro 2

Talismans are awarded at the completion of each level within the mini-realms. You could technically rush through levels, doing only enough to make it to the exit portal and get your talisman, but eventually you’ll need orbs to complete the game.

There’s a certain happiness this game brings. When viewing the game’s landscape and listening to the background music, it’s easy to pretend that you’re actually inside the mystical world of Avalar. It’s a fun escape that’s still worthy of recognition even in today’s world where video games are getting so close to looking exactly like real life.

So what do you say? Dust off that PS1 and throw in Spyro 2: Ripto’s Rage! Avalar is waiting.

Written by Nerd Bacon

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