It seems as if game developers are taking a cue from Hollywood, glutting the summer blockbuster season with sequels. Arriving just in the nick of time is Civiballs 2, the successor to one of the better physics puzzles on the Web. Unlike most movie sequels though, this second installment packs just as much oomph as the original.
Yes, that's right, Civiballs 2 is a phuzzle, heavy on the uzzle. All you need is your mouse and your wits: click the chains to cut them, releasing their cargo to the cruel but ultimately predictable whims of physics. If all the colored balls fall into urns of the same color, then you did it right The key is finding the correct order in which the chains must be cut, though timing also puts in a strong supporting role.
There's three new sets of levels to master, each based on a different ancient civilization: the Romans, the Vikings and the Incas. Each of the three tracks has its graphical theme and its own pretty steep difficulty ramp. You may want to play the original first to help you get the hang of things. You'll find a few things in Civiballs 2 that weren't in the original, such as balloons, fountains, and replicas of famous statues. These new items are good for a little variety, but don't mess with the overall feel of the game, and they don't seem the least bit gimmicky. It's sometimes nice to see a sequel that maintains and continues the things that made the original work so well without resorting to silly things. Of course, there is also the danger of leaning too far in the other direction, where the sequel is nothing but a rehash of the original, but again Civiballs 2 avoids this pitfall with its uniquely designed levels.
You could certainly say that Civiballs 2 is nothing but more levels, but considering that it offers as many new levels as in the original game without a drop (and perhaps even an increase) in quality, it stands on its own just as well as its predecessor.