Inferno 2: Meltdown


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Rating: 3.9/5 (68 votes)
| Comments (4) | Views (16)

TrickyInferno 2: MeltdownFire! In the Diner! Fire! In the Cake Factory! Danger Danger! Another spree of accidental flame outbreaks is afflicting the land of Casual Gaming! Once again, it's up to a little robot fire-fighter that could to vanquish the flames. Such is the heated premise of The Podge's new puzzle platformer sequel, Inferno 2: Meltdown.

Sequel to the original Inferno, Meltdown has similar mechanics. As before, you move your robot around the screen with the [WASD] keys, collecting coins and putting out ever-consuming flames by aiming the hose and shooting with a click of the mouse. Aiming the hose straight down will blast you into the air, and, should you have one on hand, the [spacebar] drops a sprinkler which will release a constant spray. You start with a generous but limited supply of water, but can refill your tank at various locations. Like before, points are awarded for the remainder of the structure left standing and coins collected, but now there are also people to save. They'll be okay if you get to them or keep the flames safely away, but should you leave them to immolate, expect a penalty. Believe me, the chances of that happening will be much higher should flames reach the ever-present oil drums, crates of fireworks, or air vents (though thankfully a spray at the fan controls will shut the latter down.) You'd better get the robot down, down, down to the source, or else, those flames'll keep getting higher!

Inferno 2 keeps what made the original appealing, while improving on its flaws. The controls are less clunky, the pace is faster, and the addition of people to protect adds greatly to the dramatics. As before, the set pieces you protect are wonderfully designed, and humorously builds from the mundane (a office trash fire) to the comically extreme (a blaze at the firework, match and propane factory!). While the focus feels more action-oriented, the new medal ranking system and harder "Meltdown" mode rewards strategic thinking: you might be able to rush in to the flames spray-happy, but if you don't collect enough coins, upgrades will be out of your reach.

Meltdown is not perfect: ladders and jet-pack controls remain a bit too finicky, there seems to be a bug that traps you on the ending screen, and the repetitiveness of the concept makes it a game still best enjoyed in short bursts. However, you'll still derive great satisfaction in every so often laying a troublesome flame to rest. Overall, those who enjoyed the first game will find Meltdown a worthy successor, and even those who didn't might have their interest kindled by its improvements to the concept.

Play Inferno 2: Meltdown!

4 Comments

I absolute loved the first game, but am rather down about this game.

Some problems:
1. The flames do not give an indicator of their burn level like in the previous game.
2. Hard mode removes all the fun. Hard mode makes the flames move ultra fast, leaving no room for strategy. Without the strategy, the game is no fun; and easy is too easy sometimes. I would love a hard mode that didn't use super fast moving flames (maybe one with more flames to start, or more flamable specials or something ... but still find a way to keep it paced enough for some fun strategy).
3. Minor: I don't like the flame graphics as much. I rather liked the way the old flames were done, as they looked more like a ceiling on fire just before flashover. The graphics in the first game told you how far along the fire was, which was nice for strategy.
4. It's more difficult to tell which areas are blocking access after they burn than in the previous game it seems. Actually, I think it's probably the same as before, just the fast moving fires make it hard to keep track.
5. Are the graphics maybe less detailed or "realistic"? Hard to say here; I would need to actually check things like burn marks and the items to see if there is a real difference.

The first game was really, really fun... and I wouldn't have minded a more difficult version either. Maybe the author will see this and consider these changes in the next version? :)

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Loved the reference to Electric Six in the first line of the review ;)

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You know, I suppose part of the disappointment could be because I picked hard mode first. After all, easy was a little bit too easy on the first game. :)

I wonder what is the best way for games to deal with this phsychological effect... maybe ramping up difficulty, instead, works better for games?

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The buttons are sticking a little bit my second time playing it after a little break. It makes walking, jumping, and getting on/off ladders annoying to control. I'm using Safari (but so was the first time...). Anyone else getting this problem?
But, the first time around was very fun, and that's why I wanted to play it again, anyway.

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