Earthworm Jim 2 is a platform/run 'n gun video game developed by Shiny Entertainment in association with Playmates Toys, and released in late 1995 in Europe (the same time as the airing of the animated television series), and in early 1996 in the US (after the cartoon had aired).
Earthworm Jim 2 is a sequel to the original the original game, and the second installment in the Earthworm Jim video game series. The music was composed by game music veteran Tommy Tallarico, who also composed the music for the first game.
Shiny Entertainment first released Earthworm Jim 2 simultaneously on the Sega Mega Drive/Genesis, Nintendo SNES, and the PC operating system MS-DOS. The Mega Drive version was generally regarded as having the best graphics of the console versions, although the SNES version had different and more varied background artwork to the levels, albeit mostly similar.
The PC version was ported by Rainbow Arts and also included both the first two games together a package titled "Earthworm Jim 1 & 2: The Whole Can 'O Worms". The PC port featured an upgraded CD-DA music soundtrack, more voice clips and redrawn graphics. However, it is smaller than the console versions, lacking the "Lorenzen's Soil" level.
Screaming Pink, Inc. developed enhanced versions released on the Sega Channel, Sony PlayStation and Sega Saturn. All these versions contained all levels. The latter two versions contained even more radically different, and more detailed, level background artwork than seen in earlier versions of the game.
Earthworm Jim 2 follows the exploits of annelid superhero Jim and his new sidekick Snott as they try to rescue Jim's beloved Princess What's-Her-Name from a forced marriage to the nefarious Psy-Crow. While chasing Psy-Crow across the universe, Jim comes across the summer homes of a number of villains from the first game, including Major Mucus, Evil the Cat and Bob the Killer Goldfish.
Like the original game, Earthworm Jim 2 contains a lot of irreverent, surrealist humor. It also features more diverse gameplay than the original, with each stage having a unique different style and mission, often with varied gameplay and objectives to complete from stage to stage, as well as various new weapons to obtain and use.
There are extra weapons in addition to the Plasma Blaster, such as the Three-Finger Gun, the Electro-Gun, Homing Missiles, the extremely powerful Barn Blaster, and the rather useless Bubble Gun. Snott returns from his cameos in the first game, and is now a permanent companion for Jim, hiding in the backpack of Jim's Super Suit. Snott can be used to stick and swing to other slimy green surfaces, or as a parachute, upon jumping.
Levels & Characters
Listed below, in order of appearance from the original Sega Genesis release of the game, are the levels/stages found in Earthworm Jim 2. The alternate titles are derived from both the instruction manual and ports of the game.
- Anything But Tangerines
- Lorenzen's Soil (a.k.a. Lorenzo's Soil)
- Puppy Love
- Jim's Now a Blind Cave Salamander (a.k.a. The Villi People)
- The Flyin' King (a.k.a. Peter Pain)
- Udderly Abducted
- Inflated Head
- ISO 9000
- Level Ate
- Totally Forked (a.k.a. Secret Room No. 37)
- See Jim Run, Run Jim Run
Listed below, in order of appearance, are the characters found in Earthworm Jim 2.
- Earthworm Jim
- Number Four
- Bob the Killer Goldfish
- Pedro Pupa
- Peter Puppy
- Peter's puppies
- Major Mucus
- Evil the Cat
- Flamin' Yawn
- Princess What's-Her-Name
Earthworm Jim 2 met with very positive critical reception upon release. Critics praised its visuals, audio, in-game soundtrack, and use of artistic and technical graphics across all platforms it appeared on, yet criticized the PC MS-DOS version for excluding a level (Lorenzen's Soil) found the console versions of the game.
The game was also praised for its technical achievements in squeezing performance out of the SEGA Genesis and Super Nintendo Entertainment System, garnering attention from television programs such as Bad Influence! in Britain, which ran a segment on The Making of Earthworm Jim 2. The network was impressed with the game's animation, the use of impressive in-game physics in the Lorenzen's Soil level, as well as line-scrolling that made it appear the game was being played on top of 3-dimensional backgrounds in the Puppy Love levels.
Earthworm Jim 2 was also praised for being a more varied experience than its predecessor, with the general consensus among critics being that every level felt different than the one that came before it, and that having to accomplish certain goals within these levels made for a more compelling gaming experience. One downside that critics seemed to agree on was that the game was easier and shorter than its predecessor.
On GameRankings, the Nintendo SNES version is the highest rated at 88%. Additionally, the Sega Saturn version has a rating of 85%, the Mega Drive / Genesis version has a rating of 80%, and 78% for the PlayStation version. The Game Boy Advance version is the lowest rated at 38%.
The 2009 Nintendo Wii version was generally well received, although often said to be not as good as the original. It was rated 70% by Nintendo Life magazine.
- Article on Wikipedia
- Swan, Angus (December 1995). "Review: Earthworm Jim 2". Sega Saturn Magazine (2) (Emap International Limited). p. 89.