Spikes Tend to Kill You 2 is a flash skill platformer. You are a steaming square with a dot in the middle, and you must navigate a series of screens. Each screen is filled with spikes or turrets that shoot yellow pixel bullets.
The bulk of the gameplay is…well what I described in the previous paragraph. It hearkens back to other skill jumping games like of maddening insanity like I Wanna Be the Guy or the nightmarish disappearing blocks from Mega Man. The major difference though, is that with I Wanna Be the Guy it had bits of old Nintendo games and nostalgic graphics. It was pretty much a self-aware parody of the platformer genre. With the Mega Man series, the invisible blocks were only part of Dr. Wily’s nefarious plan. You still get to fight robots and earn different weapons.
STtKY2 is an exercise in masochism. It’s frustrating to get halfway across a screen only to die and have to restart. Then the following try you die making a mistake you thought you had mastered the previous 20 attempts. At about the 10th screen I had to walk away. I came back later and made it to the 18th screen. All the while the “cute” computer font that is written on the sides of the level are mocking you. For instance there is the “I could have made this harder” quote reminding you that when you get frustrated it could have been much worse. You can even hear some bratty 10-year-old harassing you with the name of the game every time you die. “Spikes tend to kill you, duh!” The programmer must be sitting in his evil lair relishing the thought of the little bit of darkness he has unleashed upon the world.
There is also a timer going in the top left-hand corner of the screen. The idea is that you beat the game as fast as you can. It’s laughable. I’m stuck wondering if I can even beat this game, and even if I can there’s no way I’m going back to better my time.
Which just leads me to wonder what is the point? I mean, even if I can somehow, against all odds, maneuver the spiky maze of terror, what do I have to show for it? It’s not like this is a game where I’m enjoying every moment. There’s no great Final Fantasy story. There’s no madcap Mario mayhem. I’m not upgrading my Skyrim character to insane levels. I’m not racing a car or taking my football team to the championship. I doubt there’ll be a cut scene at the end. I won’t get the Still Alive song.
The only real reason to punish yourself playing a game like this is just to see if you can do it. To see if you can beat some really difficult game that some other dude programmed to be really difficult. However, it’s not like I’m going to go around bragging to all my friends about how I completed STtKY2. “Oh, you don’t know what STtKY2 is? It’s only the greatest test of video game platforming skills EVER!
The only saving grace is that your game saves and you can come back later to get your butt handed to you. Each time, maybe just maybe you’ll get to a little bit further. As frustrating as it is, you may be tempted to go make sure that there wasn’t some trick to get past that last level where you were stuck.
Why do they make games like this? Probably because we play them. Why do we play them?
- The graphics are kinda NESish.
- The music Is NESish, but could easily get annoying.
- It controls better than NES games.
- The box has steam rising from it… That is by far my favorite part.
- It’s a really difficult timing and jumping game. I guess if you really like that then put this in the “pros” section.
Score: 3.0/10 (Awful)