Players: 1 Player Game | Release Date: 09/14/04 | Genre: Platform
One of the most loved platformers of the current consoles is Sly Cooper and the Thievius Raccoonus. It should come as no surprise that Developer Sucker Punch was enlisted by Sony to develop a follow-up to the title. Sly 2:Band of Thieves continues the fun of the original Sly Cooper while adding a ton of new gameplay elements and giving players yet another reason to have fun playing as Sly and his crazy gang of thieves.
The story in Sly 2 continues after the end of the events of Sly 1. Sly is after the parts of Clockwerk but they have been stolen by Klaww Gang and scattered all over the world. So Sly and his gang set off to recover these parts so that they never fall into the wrong hands again.
True to the original, Developer Sucker Punch has delivered us beautiful looking cel-shaded graphics. These visuals are better looking than the original with a more consistent frame rate. This time around, players can control Sly, Murray, and Bentley. Each character has their own look and gameplay style. In fact, the engine is done so well, besides a few dropped frames, I don't see how much more Sucker Punch can improve upon it with the current PS2 hardware. The environments are colorful, while still being dark, and the lighting effects are once again very good looking.
The gameplay in Sly 2 is setup in multiple missions per area. You will have to work with Bentley in completing a series of tasks in order to pull of the final heist for the area. This will require all three of you to do tasks that play to your strengths. For example, Sly will move across rooftops and reach higher places. Murray is a big guy and will provide all the muscle for the team. Bentley is the brains of the group. It is a lot of fun to play as the other characters. However, I still love the Sly missions the most and part of me wishes that I could just complete all the missions with Sly. This is just personal preference though.
One of the areas that some gamers complained about in the original Sly Cooper game is that some areas were just incredible difficult. Sucker Punch has toned down the difficulty level in Sly 2. While I wouldn't classify the game as easy, it is much more forgiving than the first game. Players take less damage and jumps are easier to complete.
Overall, Sly Cooper offers a much more rewarding platform experience than the original. In fact, this is one of the best platformers on the market right now and is title you should pick up if you are fan of the genre. While Sly may not have as many sequels as Jak or Ratchet & Clank, I for one am hoping to see a Sly 3 in the not so distant future.