Cocoto Magic Circus 2 was developed by Neko Entertainment and published by Bigben Interactive. It's a gallery shooter and part of a series of cute and family-friendly games, with instalments on platforms such as the Nintendo Wii. This time Cocoto is back on the Nintendo Wii U eShop, but is it worth a download? Read on to find out…
The main gameplay consists of aiming at the TV with either the GamePad or a Wii Remote and firing at enemies to clear various goals before the time runs out. Successive hits and destroying small gems throughout the levels will award extra points for a higher score. Each level features multiple arenas with varying objectives such as reaching a certain amount of points, only shooting specific enemies or protecting Cocotos for a period of time. Bonus balloons will regularly float into the screen and provide either positive or negative effects when hit.
The game supports up to five players with one person using the GamePad and the others Wii Remotes. While the Wii Remotes use the IR pointer to aim and shoot with either the A or B button, the GamePad is held sideways, much like in Takamaru's Ninja Castle in Nintendo Land, and requires tapping the touch screen to shoot. There is infinite ammo, although it's necessary to reload regularly by flicking either controller upwards, which obviously feels more convenient with the lighter Wii Remote. Overall, both methods work well, although the Wii Remote is slightly more ideal.
The main mode features five worlds with five stages each, and consists of a series of short stages. It's possible to earn up to four stars per level by earning enough points, being quick, taking little damage and clearing the bonus objective. While the environments change several times, the enemy selection, objectives and even difficulty remain largely the same, and it becomes a repetitive and very easy affair rather quickly. The extra modes sound promising on paper, but, unfortunately, they merely play like the main mode with little variation.
While the game can be played with just the Wii Remote alone, the menu navigation is still bound to the GamePad even after the Wii Remote was selected as the primary controller. It's not a big deal, but an inconvenient oversight nonetheless. Other than that, the overall presentation is great and it's very commendable to see such an effort put into visuals and audio for such a simple game.
It's a gallery shooter with very solid controls but little variety beyond its simple concept, causing it to become repetitive rather quickly.
The environments are varied enough and feature a lovely-looking paper style. The enemies are well animated, although there could have been a bigger selection of them to match the different areas.
The soundtrack is very good and appropriate for the environments of each main world.
The main mode features five worlds, but those will only last for roughly three hours. There are several extra modes, but they are far too similar to the main game and don't add much value at all.
Cocoto Magic Circus 2 is a solid gallery shooter with great controls and a lovely presentation. Unfortunately, it has little to offer in terms of content and variety to justify its current high price tag of £24.99 on the eShop and can only be recommended to younger gamers looking for a few hours of simple fun or those who would really like to have it as a simple party game for up to five players.