It only took two bad games and two negative reviews. Finally, we have a game that in sports terms: scored a touchdown!
The object of Barriers 2 is this: You, and a potential co-op buddy of yours if playing muliplayer with a friend, play as two unnamed characters in the shape of boxes, each their own color of blue and pink, with a brown-shaped button sticking out of the top. (Hypothesis leads to believe they are supposed to represent people with no faces - However it never tells us.) You need to reunite these two characters together to complete the level. Doing so requires stepping on panels and pulling switches, which in turn changes the shape of the playing field by opening or closing walls. Players seeking an additional challenge can choose to collect the "love notes" that are place throughout the levels. As the levels go on, each puzzle becomes slightly more challenging than the last. Eventually, you'll encounter laser walls, floors, and other surprises. There are 14 levels in this short 5 to 10 minute game - will you make it through them all?
Normally at this point of the review; I'm like a raging hornet. It doesn't take much for newgrounds to have me enter "Destroyer" mode and proceed to nitpick to rip the game in front of me to shreds. But with Barriers 2... that vibe is more mallow. There hasn't been a cause to unleash the judges mallet and sentence it to damnation. The fact of the matter is Barriers 2 fundamentally meets it's goal. There are still issues of course - the game isn't perfect. But it is still exciting, and provides a decent enough challenge for the casual gamer. it deserves the greenlight.
Now for some bugs....
- Sometimes characters will randomly jump 3 times higher than they should. (possible bug?)
--- Jumping off-screen causes the character to be permanently stuck. The only fix is to press R to reset. (100% Confirmed Bug)
- Sometimes characters will get stuck in the floor being unable to move. Can be fixed by pressing the jump button (W). (possible bug?)
- In co-op mode; Getting killed by the lasers doesn't always reset the level right away, and instead triggers a massive delay. (100% confirmed bug)
- On very rare occasions; The floor lasers don't always kill - Sometimes you can stand directly on top of one and nothing will happen. It is unknown what causes this. (100% confirmed bug)
Say what you will about it's poor graphics, unchanging soundtrack, and it's endless amount of bugs & glitches... The biggest letdown in Barriers 2 is that it's too short! 5 Minutes is too short for a perfect game. There is also of course the looping soundtrack that you can't turn off without restarting at level 1. Finally, there is also a lack of satisfaction for collecting the notes.
Single Player Vs. Multiplayer: it isn't much difference. It's basically single player mode without having to press the spacebar to switch between characters. In fact, it's faster to pick multiplayer and have control of the second character with the arrow keys, even if you are playing alone. All levels in single player are the exact same as multiplayer. So both modes bring nothing new to the experience.
There is no doubt that this game could be expanded upon. But as it stands right now, Barriers 2 is only worthy of a 6 out of 10 - slightly above average. This goes for the single player experience, and the co-op experience. Even then, I still had a fun time playing it for the 2 and a half playthroughs + the co-op playthrough I did with one of my gaming buddies. Unfortunately, from an unbiased standpoint: there just isn't enough here to give that glowing positive rating. The graphics needed improvement AND actual artists designing it, the gameplay needed extending, and there just needs to be more color added to it's game mechanics in general (like a level select, or a hard mode for example).
If Barriers 3 is ever made, it needs something that will make players want to come back, and not think of it to be a one-hit wonder. The canvas is laid out, along with the premise. Now it just needs all the holes filled. Score multiple touchdowns as oppose to just the one.
Final Verdict: 6 out of 10
NG Rating: 3 Stars