Hands-On Preview: Naa, naa, naa, Badman! [Awaits a lawsuit from Warner Bros.]
It is almost upon us ? time to become the Lord God of Destruction again and rain death and terror down on the heroes. Badman, the Overlord of the Netherworld, has summoned you once more to help him with his conquest. Get your PSP primed and ready to go, because NIS America has some new features to help you save the day with What Did I Do to Deserve this, My Lord!? 2.
The game is known as ?Yuusha no Kuse Ni Namaikida? in Japan, which translates to ?For a hero, you are quite impudent!? And impudent heroes abound. Luckily, Badman is at your side, training you to be the ultimate villain. He walks you through the training missions, teaching you the best way to utilize your dig power, the importance of maintaining the food pyramid among the monsters, how to differentiate between blocks with sediment and blocks with mana, and the best way to build the right balance within your ecosystem. The proper application of this knowledge can help you build a mighty army - neglecting these rules, however, will result in the heroes dragging Badman out of the dungeon. They win the game - and you get a sharp reprimand.
As with the first game, the demo has completely taken over my free time. The introduction is more involved than the last ? now you have an actual overworld map, with kingdoms and sunshine and all of the things that disgust Badman. He has summoned you here with the specific purpose of helping him take it all over. The first part is Area 1: Van Gehrig, which is what you are aiming to conquer in the demo. The objective is still the same ? use your dig power to create a dungeon and populate it with an ecosystem full of monsters capable of protecting Badman from the heroes.
The training missions now explain the details of dungeon building far more clearly than they did in the first game, walking you step by step through each facet with all-new diagrams. They also explain the best methods of digging in order to maximize growth. There are more complicated factors at work with your army ? if you don't watch over them and make sure a balance is struck, mutations occur, harming your ecosystem and, if you aren't careful, leading to its self-destruction. You can adjust this manually by trying to stabilize it or, if you can't fix it in time, you can cause an earthquake, preventing the mutation from occurring. This uses up precious dig power, though, so it should be used sparingly. But a good dungeon maker will easily be able to avoid such pitfalls.
The graphics and music haven't changed a bit ? they are still whimsical, entertaining, and wonderfully simple. Also recurring is the humor ? as you wait for the first area of the demo to load, ?Digging for Demons in All the Wrong Places? scrolls across the bottom. Upon dying, one hero shouts out, ?I didn't save!? and another says, ?I can use the Farce you know!?? And, of course, Badman still berates you as much as he possibly can when you make mistakes, especially if, at any point, you dare to show weakness and choose ?Nay? when he wanted you to say ?Aye.?
There is one big change ? What Did I Do to Deserve this, My Lord? 2 will be coming out on UMD. As a special bonus, those who buy the disc will get the first game included for free. This is a steal at $29.99, and with new features, a clearer training system, and the same tongue-in-cheek humor as always, I'm hoping this game will catch on with non-Japanese crowds and become more than just a cult classic.