Total time played: 2 hours
Short review: A sad followup to a decent NES game that has more in common with Adventures in the Magic Kingdom than Tiny Toons.
Interesting links related to Tiny Toon Adventures 2: Trouble In Wackyland
An unneeded sub-par sequel
When I was a kid I played the Tiny Toons NES game quite a bit and really enjoyed it. Revisiting it as an adult I really didn’t care for it that much. But, somehow I never realized that a sequel had even been released. It came out in 1993 and I had moved on to Sega Genesis and was probably obsessing over Mortal Kombat at the time. Finally, 24 years later, I decided to give it a shot. It is like the game designers took everything good about the first game and removed it. All that is left is a shell, a game with only 5 levels and no way to change characters.
How to play
The game has just as much in common with Adventures in the Magic Kingdom as it does with the original Tiny Toons. The game starts off with a level select screen that looks like a theme park map and you are tasked with “riding” four different rides. If you can finish the ride you get a golden ticket. Getting 4 golden tickets gives you the ability to enter the castle at the center of the park.
The one feature of the game I kind of like is that the points you collect on each level can be traded in at the ticket gate for extra tickets. This is essentialy your lives. You start off with 10 tickets and each ride costs a different number of tickets to ride. If you run out of tickets and you don’t have enough points to buy more tickets it is game over. Of course there are continues, so it isn’t truly game over. Also, once you get all four golden tickets and reach the final stage there is no more need for tickets meaning you can try the final level 100 times and never get a game over.
Unfortunately none of the levels feature a checkpoint meaning that if you die you must start at the beginning every single time. Most of the levels can be beaten in under 2 minutes, but if you make it 1 minute and 59 seconds into the level and die you have to play the entire thing again. Each stage features 3 ways to die:
- Falling into a hole
- Getting hit 3 times without picking up a heart which restores one hit point.
- Running out of time (this is only an issue on the bumper cars and final stage as the other 3 are all self scrolling stages.)
Choose your stage
Level by level
Rollercoaster – Cost to ride – 4 tickets – Play as Babs
In this level you ride a “roller coaster” through a bunch of obstacles that require you to jump, duck and even hang upside down from the roller coaster cart. Be prepared to play this level a lot as there is a lot of trial, error and memorization needed to reach the end.
Train – Cost – 2 tickets – Play as Hampton
This is probably the easiest of the games levels. Basically you move left to right on top of a train car while jumping over signs, ducking under tunnel entrances and hitting birds or bad guys that come your way by tapping B and lunging into them belly first. Other than the final level this is the only one that features a boss. The boss is a dog who pops out of holes in the front of the train. In order to beat him you must bop him with your belly a few times before he punches you to death (it sounds more violent than it is).
Log Flume – Cost – 3 tickets – Play as Furball
This level is very similar to the roller coaster level. But, now you are riding on a log through water instead of hanging from a roller coaster track. The level is slightly easier than the roller coaster level because you don’t have the option to hang upside down giving you one less move to have to consider when avoiding obstacles.
Bumper Cars – Cost – 1 ticket – Play as Plucky
A top down view of a small bumper car arena that has bumpers that bounce you around like in a game of pinball. There are 3 different arenas where you must knock two opponents into the small hole into the floor before they knock you in the hole 3 times. There isn’t much strategy involved, I found just brute force and button mashing got me through this stage pretty quickly.
Funhouse – Cost – 50 regular tickets or 4 golden tickets – Play as Buster
Like most NES games the final level is the hardest in the game. This one required me to look up how to beat it online, but not for the normal reason you would expect in a maze level.
There are several different sections of this level all involving platforming. The goal is to jump over holes, kill the bad guys, walk through the maze of doors and walk on both the floor and ceiling until you find the end. There was one specific spot that I could not get past. I was on the ceiling and there was a wall in front of me that I could not jump over and the gap at the bottom was too small to walk under.
Halfway there. Now to run and slide again.
I didn’t realize that holding B while walking allowed you to run, the reason I didn’t know this is because I was 95% of the way through the game and I had never needed the feature. Once I figured this out I was able to run and slide under the small gap at the bottom of the wall to progress. This was pretty tough as I was on the ceiling but the down arrow on the controller still made me duck, it just wasn’t intuitive.
Once you finally get through the maze you come to a room with your secret admirer, Elmira. You must jump across small ledges above her to the door on the opposite side of the room. If you fall she will smother you with kisses, but she does not take away a heart like every other enemy in the game, she takes 10 seconds off of the game clock. This is the only stage I ever ran out of time on and I did it more than once. The key is to just not touch Elmira.
I figured getting passed her was the end of the level, but there was still quite a bit to go. Luckily, no more mazes. After finally getting through the entire level which took more time than all of the other stages combined (because I kept dying) I reached the final boss, Montana Max.
Max rides in a blimp and throws bombs that you must kick back into him. It takes 5 hits to beat him and luckily I did it on my first try because I was sick of playing the final stage.
While this is not a good game I can’t fault the controls or the graphics. There are some good ideas that just weren’t completely fleshed out. If there had been twice as many levels, the ability to play as whatever character you wanted and some of the longer stages had checkpoints this would have been a great game. But, I rated it 3.5 hearts because it felt like the game designers were being lazy and it isn’t one that has a lot of replay value.