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Viewtiful Joe 2 (GameCube) Review

Review for Viewtiful Joe 2 on GameCube - on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review

Cheesy mocking of Hollywood movies, addictive 2D beat 'em up gameplay and some severe difficulty that tested the most experienced of gamers, Viewtiful Joe on the GameCube went down a storm with many. That hard-as-nails gameplay may have put off most, and even stopped a lot of people from completing it, but it was appreciated by brawler fans that grew up on tough 8- and 16-bit games. Joe is back in Viewtiful Joe 2, and his partner Silvia is even jumping into the action.

Familiarity is, of course, the theme of the game. It all takes place in Movie Land, where films are created under the watchful eye of Captain Blue, greatest superhero ever.

The VFX powers form the basis of the combat system. The two main ones are Slow, which is bound to the L shoulder button and activates a Matrix-style bullet speed effect and Zoom In, which is bound to the B key and (surprise, surprise) zooms in on your current character of choice and changes the main attacks to more powerful super-attacks. Each character also has one unique VFX power, activated with R. Joe carries the super-speed inducing Mach Speed through from the original and Sylvia sports the only new power in the game, Replay. Replay is started by holding down R for the duration of an attack, which is then repeated three times to triple either the damage dealt out or the damage taken whilst holding R.

Replay isn't particularly useful in battle, and neither is Mach Speed or Zoom In, for that matter. Almost all of the robot enemies are beaten by holding down L and dodging the attack, which lets you lock on to the enemy and beat seven shades of oil of them.

Screenshot for Viewtiful Joe 2 on GameCube - on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review

The one part of this game that isn't afflicted with repetitiveness is the game's wonderful graphical style, quality and detail. Sure, it uses exactly the same engine as the original Viewtiful Joe, but the quality of the art direction is almost unsurpassed, and it fits in with the distinctive, chunky cel-shading of the engine perfectly. Every new area is full of decals and details that bring a smile to the face of players.

This is an immensely enjoyable game. It's fun, fast, action-packed, everything an action game needs to be, really. The graphics, while almost exactly the same as Viewtiful Joe's, are some of the most stylised and noticeable on any system at the moment. Any individual encounter can be seen as a pure slice of gaming action, fresh and invigorating compared to the majority of games out there. However, it's when you look at the game as a whole and think about what it could have been that the cracks start appearing. The sixth hour of gameplay (of which there should be at least ten) is very much similar to the first, but the enemies have more attacks and more health. The co-op mode is noticeable only by it's puzzling and disappointing absence. The cut-scenes are fun, but the story is inconsequential and pointless. It's an enjoyable game, but there could be so much more, and these complaints are amplified by the fact that they all apply to the first game as well. It's well worth buying, but it's no Resident Evil 4.

Screenshot for Viewtiful Joe 2 on GameCube - on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review


The gameplay mechanics are tight, intuitive and inventive, but suffer from repetition. With more time spent on the mechanics of the enemies and less spent on the lloks of the enemies the game could be that bit more enjoyable.


Wonderful, chunk, cell shaded cartoon styling absolutely perfect for the game. The Viewtiful Joe sports a really unique, eye-catching and enjoyable on the eye design. The details, too, are above par.


Nothing astonishingly memorable, but the omnipresent voice-over fits the game down to a tee, the tunes are acceptable, the SFX work well and the voice acting is better than most.


It's no JRPG, but there's plenty to keep you occupied. The first run through the main game should weigh in at anywhere between 10 and 15 hours for most gamers, which isn't too shabby for a beat-em-up. There's also a good deal of replayability, with awards to be accrued and things to be unlocked.

Cubed3 Rating

Rated 7 out of 10

Good - Bronze Award

About this score
Rated 7 out of 10

An eminently enjoyable action game with wonderful graphical style and a decent dash of humour. Those who bought Viewtiful Joe may want to wait for a bargain, but if you've never played with Capcom's Hollywood Hero on Speed, this is strongly recommended. Not bad at all.

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C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  7/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  8/10 (2 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

Reader comments - add yours today Comments on this Review

There are no replies to this review yet. Why not be the first?

Nice review. 7.5 aint bad, may pick this up if it's cheap. And since I'm no longer in debt, it could be my 20th game...

Nice review. It scored a bit lower than I expected, but the points justified it.

hmm, the scores a bit lower then I expected, but I'm trusting your judgement on this one :Smilie. Looks like a good game, just not one worthy of

Now on twitter, predicting celebrity death headlines! @thedaytheydie


This game JUST came out now!!!!!

It came out here in the U.S ages ago!!!

So how long was Viewtiful Joe 1?

God knows when it came out, I just know it got sod all coverage here in Europe (is it even out?). Good review though Rob, top stuff :-D

Trying to think of a witty signature after 'Hacker-gate'...
Senior ModeratorStaff Member

Good stuff Rob! I'm not much of a VJ fan (played the first), but it's not too bad with a well justified great review! Here, have a main page box :D

Cubed3 Admin/Founder & Designer

Came out on 1st April, so it's been out a good 4 weeks.

What would you have scored it if you've never played the original VJ? To me, that's where it sounded like you deducted most of the points.

TAG: That American Guy

"If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone." Romans 12:18

When I click on ther review it comes up with an error page saying 'No review selected."

TAG: I don't think I would have scored it much higher than I did. The repetition is noticable even when you look at the game on its own - almost all of the encounters are the same.

Pretty much everyone else: thankye very much. You can expect more :D

Now I'm off to start a campaign to have 'Gameplay' and 'Gamepad' to be added to the Word dictionary :D.

Oh, and kudos to JB for the cool box! And to Tempo for the speedy response Smilie

< Edited by Rob W On 2005/5/3 15:39 >

1st of April? What a stupid day to bring it out:
"When VJ2 out"
"1st of April"
"Yeah, whatever! You really think I'm gonna believe it's out on April Fools day!?"
Smilie. Just a typical converstaion that could have happened. Didn't make an imprint on the charts in any case.

Now on twitter, predicting celebrity death headlines! @thedaytheydie

Pity. Why do all good games do bad on release?

Hmm sounds like a little bit of a harsh review, but will have to try it for myself before I argue. I love the VJ franchise and will be enjoying FX Battle when it comes out, as well as this in the Summer.

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