Date: 12-01-2011 09:01
Author: Matt Gonzales

PDC profile: Matt

Vanguard II is the sequel to 1981 arcade game Vanguard, and now released as SNK classic mini game. Is Vanguard II worth your time? Read after the break ...

It's Hard Out There for a Ship

Vanguard II is the sequel to ANK's past game Vanguard. Usually sequels contain gameplay from there predecessor's, in this case Vanguard II completely scrapped the side-scrolling basis and has the camera over the ship. The ship is able to move anywhere on the field, its only attack is dropping bombs and shooting lasers. The objective of the game is to destroy a certain amount of pods on the field, thus ending up destroying the core pod. Sounds easy when put into words, but it's very difficult to complete. Anything that hits the ship from enemy ships all the way to lasers can destroy the ship, making the game start over the level from the beginning. Not even the built-in game settings that allows the ship to become immortal can help in this game. Controlling the ship is a difficult task, it's almost like moving the reticle in front of the ship instead of the ship itself, in other words the reticle is leading the ship.

No music, just horrible sounding explosions plague the game forever. It would have been descent enough if there was some kind of music in Vanguard II, but no, I sat down listening to my ship moving and exploding every 10 seconds. There is no end to the gameplay in Vanguard II, at least from what I've played in 4 hours. Each level just racks up more pods to destroy and has more enemies wanting to crash into the ship. Unlike the original Vanguard, there is no story what so ever. The only improvement I've seen from the two games is the graphics. Sprites of the ships and the background of the field does look good for the games age. But it still does not make up for the games repetitiveness to pointlessly destroying pods for absolutely no reason at all.

Pointless Beyond Recognition
I asked myself a question when playing Vanguard II: Why am I doing these pointless objectives? There was nothing that could answer my question, it was just me shooting up pods to destroy a core which the game doesn't seem it wants to tell you why. I played nothing but 4 hours of my ships horrible moving sounds along with it exploding to cheesy overused exploding sound effects. There was nothing remotely good about Vanguard II besides the sprites. Pass this game by all means of existence, and get the more superior predecessor Vanguard.

Vanguard II is available on the PlayStation Store in PlayStation Mini format. Published originally by SNK, ported by G1M2. I played Vanguard II a total of 4 hours on the PSP prior to this review.

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