When gamers couldn’t get enough of adventure or islands, Now Production and Hudson Soft rushed to push a sequel out for Adventure Island. In 1991, they released Adventure Island II for the Nintendo Entertainment System. Our favorite beach bum Master Higgins is back and once again he will rescue a princess. Will his second outing be as successful as his first? Master Higgins is moving on to the next one in this Adventure Islands II review.
Adventure Island II Plot:
The first interesting thing I learned about Adventure Island II, is that Master Higgins isn’t rescuing the same princess he was in the first game who was called Princess Leilani. Instead, he is now rescuing her sister, Princess Tina. We learned Master Higgins is a just a well-to-do guy, as he didn’t know Leilani and just decided to rescue her on a whim, he is now going to risk himself to rescue yet another stranger? Gee, if only more humans acted like Higgins!
As you may recall the ending to Adventure Island, it had Master Higgins and his newly rescued Princess Leilani smooching on the beach. In a move to make all feminists upset, Master Higgins ditches Leilani after probably “getting it in” with her and leaves to rescue her sister, Princess Tina. Like her slutty sister, Princess Tina, puts out for Master Higgins, kissing him at the end. Just like that, a playa is born. I did learn something interesting about Master Higgins. He is based on a real-life person in Japan who worked for Nintendo. Don’t ask me his name, but the guy was famous for holding a record of pushing 16 buttons in one second. So just like in real life Master Higgins was good at hitting the spot, just in a different sense.
Adventure Island II Gameplay:
The first thing I notice about the actual gameplay during my Adventure Island II review is that Master Higgins is now accompanied by four different dinosaurs that can be found in eggs throughout levels, or called upon at the beginning of a level if you have saved one of them in your inventory. If you have a dinosaur this makes levels 100 times easier. I didn’t attempt one level without the help of a dinosaur. There are four of them. One flies, one shoots sparks out of his tail, one breathes fire, and the other swims underwater. Obviously, the flying and swimming ones are great for sky and water levels while the other two wreck any other level.
Having the dinosaurs helped a lot in my Adventure Island II review, so much that if I died, I restarted the level just to get my dinosaur back. The islands were much more detailed than the previous entry. Instead of just forests and woods, there were snow levels, sky levels, water levels, and volcano levels. The coolest discovery I made was the mysterious eggs that would pop out of either the ground or my dinosaur’s ass. No seriously, I don’t know where they come from! But the key, no pun intended was to hop fast and when the egg pops up quickly reverse course to crack it before it disappears off-screen. Inside the egg was a key that took you up to the sky and put you in a room with a talking pterodactyl. (I know this game should be played on LSD)
The friendly pterodactyl would ask if you would like to skip this world and go to the next. Well, wanting to beat the game as quickly as I could, I picked yes, and he would fly me to the next island. I thought it was the coolest thing and a fun secret in my Adventure Island II review that is rarely put into games made for today. I had a sense of discovery, and with it, I was able to skip two worlds completely. It was quite awesome!
Another thing that completely changed was the bosses. Thank God! The first Adventure Island lacked any creativeness for the bosses at the end of the stages. Each was just a stone statue with a different head but shot the same stupid fireball at you. This time, however, each boss was unique and you needed different strategies to beat them. In some cases, you could bring your dinosaur friend into battle to help defeat the bosses which ranged from weird vines that grew and shot fire, to wasps, scorpions, and an octopus. The final boss wasn’t too hard, but it did pose a challenge in my Adventure Island II review. It was two bosses in a row where you really had to time your jumping on the second boss.
I first played the original Adventure Island in seventh grade in the basement of my church. I didn’t try playing the second one until a few years after college. I thought I was so cool because I just purchased an NES USB controller for my computer and was going to play tons of emulated Nintendo games. One of the first that I picked was Adventure Island II. I didn’t care much for the first Adventure Island but once I start a series I’m sort of have OCD about playing every game in it so I had to move on to Adventure Island II. I was pleasantly surprised by how much the sequel improved during my Adventure Island II review.
The series was one of the first that I started to review for my original attempt at reviewing video games. I’m not sure why I stopped reviewing them, I think my job started to get crazy and I just lost motivation. It was the last game I reviewed on my original website but that work didn’t go to waste. I used much of the structure from that review for this one.
Adventure Island II Review Score:
Adventure Island II improved through creativity and better gameplay. The added dinosaur companion helped shoulder the load for Master Higgins and the change to bosses was a huge welcome. Bravo to pimp Master Higgins and slaying not only 16 islands in two games but two sisters as well!
Adventure Island II scores a 7.3 out of 10.
What would you write in your Adventure Island II review? Do you remember when Adventure Island II when it first came out? What was your favorite dinosaur to use? Did you have a boss that gave you issues? Are you a stud like Master Higgins? Let me know your memories and thoughts, I’d love to read the comments!