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RELEASE DATE (NA): August 22, 1996 GENRE: Platformer
// review by Meow

In Spanish, it's Earthworm Jim DOS. Wait...

In a world where the market was flooded with Wannabe the Insert-Animal-Here, Earthworm Jim was a rare success story. And with success comes sequels.

Earthworm Jim 2 builds upon the foundation of the predecessor, having wackier environments and characters and even whole new mechanics. In this game, we still have Earthworm Jim wielding his trusty blaster, and the plasma blaster makes a return though with a unique design. In addition, we also have a "home"ing gun that shoots homing houses, a bubble-gun that literally just blows bubbles, a screen-nuking "brick house" gun, and my favorite: a three way blaster gun. Unfortunately, there seems to be a serious lack of platforming stages that let you make use of these until half-way through the game, starting you with a platforming stage and then slapping you with a myriad of gimmicky stages such as Peter's Puppies that has you bouncing puppies on a giant marshmallow to safety ala that old Fire Game & Watch LCD game and an awful isometric shooter level where you escort an explosive balloon to the end. But after that, you have a good ol' platforming time, though each platforming level in this game also has the weird decision to force you to carry some heavy object around (save for the last level). Thankfully, only one of these levels really revolves around it, and even then that level is at least more of a puzzle level than an action level.

Some people are still doin' the worm, whatever that is.

This all aside, I find Earthworm Jim 2 to be significantly easier than its predecessor, and as a result the game honestly feels shorter. The game also seems to have a shortage of unique tracks and instead opts for remixes of classical tunes in that delicious MIDI format.

Getting to the DOSyness of this particular port, this port is thankfully FAR better made than Jim 1 was, feeling rather solid and the graphics didn't feel super lacking at any times. Unfortunately, this port is missing at least one stage, though I have heard some people claim that it's actually missing two of them, which oddly makes the GBA port of the game a more viable option, but don't quote me on that. This version is the only one I know is commonly available, especially since Nintendo is canning their Wii Virtual Console store, but it's at least not a strictly awful port. And at least the Steam store page doesn't have any misleading snapshots this time, but the next game will more than make up for that...

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