If you enjoyed the original Lost Planet, trudging through the knee-deep tundra, battling snow pirates and alien insects that defy Darwin's Theory of Evolution, but found the experience was something of a solitary endeavor, then Lost Planet 2 can be bought from HMV for just £17.99!
Lost Planet 2 is built almost exclusively with co-op in mind, and as such it received a rather mixed reception, averaging a less than impressive 69 on MetaCritic. However, fans of the game praised its co-op friendly design, the lush visuals and locales, and the excellent customisation options.
In Lost Planet 2, the not so lost at all planet of E.D.N 3 is beginning to thaw, with swathes of ice-floats and tundra giving way to exotic jungles and barren deserts in the blink of an eye. The emphasis on co-op bleeds into the story, as players join a team of four mercenaries battling snow pirates and Akrid alike in pursuit of some elusive MacGuffin.
The game is built solely around the idea of functioning as part of a team. You'll accrue energy to resurrect your body if you die, and the team shares this stored energy. You can deploy an unfurling shield to protect your partners, or hop in a Vital Suit and have your friends cling on to the sides. It's an interesting design choice that would appear to be simply catering to what fans and critics alike have been clamouring for. More co-op.
But problems stem from the inability to actually play Lost Planet 2 without real people. You can play the game alone, but the AI-controlled partners leave a lot to be desired in their combat prowess and tactical ability. Further difficulties arise at certain points in the game where co-operation with your partners is vital. An infamous example is a level set aboard a moving train, where you must reach a super-weapon further down and manually load, aim, fire and reload it to destroy a colossal desert-worm chasing you. No indication is given to how you operate the super-weapon, and if you die at any point in the level, be it the first enemy encounter or the last shot needed to kill the worm, you'll have to restart from the very beginning.
But Lost Planet 2 is brimming with promise. Japanese developers are so often criticised for lacking forward thinking, so Capcom should be praised for bringing a big-budget, spectacle-laden game which is built around the idea of four real people, linking up and fighting together. It's what gamers have always wanted, but it just needs a little tweaking here and there.