Microsoft are promising the most powerful console of all time, but is the Scorpio really worth getting excited over?
Super Mega Worm vs. Santa 2: Holly Jolly Worm Vengeance in the North Pole
Being the follow up to the original holiday game Super Mega Worm vs. Santa, the aptly-named Super Mega Worm vs. Santa 2 pretty much takes what it was and makes it into a second game, with all the same mechanics, monster violence, and elf-gobbling mayhem.
You play as Wojira, a vicious worm hellbent on destroying the evil Mecha Santa and all the inhabitants of the North Pole in the only way you know how: by launching on a violent rampage and gobbling up everything that moves.
Throughout the levels, you’ll burrow underground, bounce high in the air, and glide along the snowy terrain of the North as you chomp on every enemy you come across. Enemy types vary, but not in any real meaningful way outside of having more damage resistance and health that forces you to bounce back and forth onscreen as you continue to attack them. A health meter at the top of the screen steadily empties as you traverse throughout a level, refilling constantly as you eat the creatures both above and beneath you in the environment. A somewhat frustrating lack of tutorial in the game will leave first timers performing a bit of trial-and-error as they figure out exactly how the game’s mechanics work and how to engage them. It’s a tad disorienting, and something that could have been easily remedied by giving you a brief overview of the rules and controls before the start of the first level.
As you move throughout levels, Wojira grows longer and gains more powers, such as the ability to wreak havoc by spitting fire balls or a freezing icicle beam. The use of super powers is fun and satisfying, adding another dimension to already-chaotic and frantic gameplay. Score plays a large part in your success throughout SMW vs. Santa 2 as well, and you’ll be drawn back into the game time and time again to try and beat your last high score as you continue to move throughout the game’s multiple levels.
It’s an ultra-violent romp through the North Pole that’s fun in both presentation and execution. Despite having an on-screen D-pad, controls are mostly responsive and work well to deliver a satisfying experience. Clever music and an endearing pixelated retro art style all add charm to the game, accentuated by the ultraviolent use of clouds of blood released each time Wojira scores a kill. If you’re queasy about graphic violence in games, it’s probably not suited to your taste, due to its fairly over-the-top violent nature.
If you come to SMW vs. Santa 2 looking for a deep, mechanically brilliant platforming game a la League of Evil, prepare to be disappointed. It’s not a game with a lot of depth or intelligence. That’s not necessarily to its detriment, however; being half-endless runner, half-sidescrolling action game, it’s a simple, yet satisfying mix of both ample challenge and mindless fun that promises to be a suitable game to fall back on when you’re sitting around and have a few minutes to kill during the holidays this year. No, it’s not necessarily the most family friendly of mobile titles, but if you’re a fan of mindless monster violence, Super Mega Worm vs. Santa 2 is right up your alley.