Game of the week: Dragon Hills 2

October 11, 2017

Dragons! Zombies! Explosions! Dragon Hills 2 is full of action!

This week, the developers at Rebel Twins dropped a sequel to the popular casual game Dragon Hills and just like the destruction you can cause in the game, Dragon Hills 2 has been destroying my free time.

Dragon Hills 2 has everything you could want in a casual game. It’s easy to play for just minutes at a time, the graphics are colorful and striking, and the difficulty makes all progress seem important. I didn’t really play the first Dragon Hills, but you can bet your bottom dollar I’ll be playing this sequel on and off for months.

Gameplay

Like a lot of casual games, Dragon Hills 2 falls under the auto-runner category, which is to say that even though you are always aiming for the high score, there is a small but present progression curve to the game that keeps it from going stale too quickly.

The controls are simple; your character moves automatically and you need to tap and hold the screen to have your dragon burrow into buildings, the ground, or even right through enemies. When you release your finger, your dragon will spring upwards and jump allowing you to reach new platforms, collect coins, kill off bad guys, and avoid obstacles.

There are plenty of obstacles in the way of your success. Zombies will attack you with cars, guns, and chainsaws which will eat away at your health, and acid pits will automatically kill you and end your run immediately. This is where the difficulty of Dragon Hills 2 comes into play because you only have one way to move and that down and up in a snake-like pattern. It’s really hard to judge exactly where your dragon will burrow or come up from the ground when the gameplay is so fast. It forces you to always be looking at what’s coming up ahead and anticipate how to react.

Collecting coins allows you to purchase in-game power-ups which will help you defeat bosses and get you further into the level, but they are expensive and the number of coins you collect each run varies extensively. The good news is they are not at all necessary to progress, they will just make you progress much faster, you can choose the path that’s right for you. The game is procedurally-generated so no two runs are the same, giving the game a nice spice of variety, so you don’t get bored during an extended gaming session.

Design & Sound

The visuals are probably the most impressive part of the game overall. The bright and vibrant colors are not only eye-pleasing, but the background and the foreground have a nice balance, so you can always clearly see the obstacles, enemies, and buildings in the foreground.

If I have one complaint about the design (and it’s a minor complaint), it’s that at times the screen can get too crowded, which caused me to lose track of what was going on in the game. It causes me to die a couple of times, but with all the chaos, destruction, and explosions in the game, I mostly chalk it up to part of the experience that makes Dragon Hills 2 so enjoyable.

Overall impressions

In short, Dragon Hills 2 is worth its $2.99 price tag. The game delivers on all of its promises providing a fun, wacky, and colorful casual gaming experience that makes it worthwhile to play for minutes or hours at a time.

If you’re a fan of the first Dragon Hills or are just looking for a new casual game to play on your commute to work or school, Dragon Hills 2 is worth checking out.

Other games this week

The Talos Principle: You’re an android who wakes up in the middle of some ancient ruins as an omnipotent voice tells you he has planned a series of tests. The beautifully-rendered 3D puzzle game reminds me a lot of Portal making you think outside the box to complete each task. $4.99 on the App Store.

Kick Ass Commandos: Another game full of explosions and gun, Kick Ass Commandos tasks you with blowing up the bad guys any way you want. With plenty of guns, ammo, and rockets at your side, this 2D retro top-down shooter is a ton of fun. $2.99 on the App Store

What do you think?

Have you checked out Dragon Hills 2? Let us know what you think by leaving a comment down below!

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