For some, platformers are the bane of the App Store, as so many fail to make the transition to the touchscreen very well for one reason or another. Even genre stalwarts such as Sonic the Hedgehog and Mega Man have made for iffy conversions on iOS at times. Fortunately, for the most part, Cordy 2 gets it right.
One of the bigger issues with the aforementioned games is getting the controls down right, and Silvertree Media has nailed it here. We were initially skeptical of how well it would work, particularly given the rather odd idea to have the Left and Right directions situated diagonally from each other, rather than beside each other. And yet, this mad science works! It might take a little getting used to, but once you do, it works surprisingly well– other developers, particularly those porting their properties from consoles, may want to take note.
Similarly, most actions are performed with a single jump button. The jumps themselves can be a little floaty, and with the camera following Cordy, accuracy in nailing a landing atop a foe or a platform can be tricky. Thankfully, the designers included a double-jump that not only helps steady Cordy, but also attracts nearby gears that you’re out to collect. A second context-sensitive button sometimes appears, allowing Cordy to dash, swing from fixed grapple points, and activate transporters, and works quite well.
As the story goes, the robotic duo of Cordy and Volt have crash-landed on World 2, where they find the denizens are in peril thanks to the malevolent designs of the evil Boogaloo. They go to help out by collecting the vital Zap Drops from Boogaloo’s Boogie Bots through 48 levels spread across 3 worlds.
It’s a fun, simple premise that’s accompanied by charming character designs which are neither too cute nor overbearing. The style of the backgrounds and music reminds us of some of the higher-quality offerings on the old Sega CD platform, reminiscent in feel but not derivative.
Unfortunately, progress is tied to how many stars you get in each level, of which there are three at the most. Time seems to be one factor, but the levels themselves are large, and can take several minutes to get through, particularly if you’re seeking out all the Zap Drops and gears you can find (and in the case of the Zap Drops, there are usually one or two per stage that are well-hidden).
As a result, it’s easy enough to feel your progress bottlenecked. Repeat playing for stars works well for arcade-puzzlers like Angry Birds, for example, but in something with more depth like Cordy 2, it can feel frustrating as you hit a wall in your journey. What’s more, the inclinations to get through the stage in a short time while also discovering all its secrets feel at odds with each other; it’s no doubt meant to encourage replay value, but instead feels discouraging.
Cordy 2 isn’t quite perfect, particularly if you’re interested in marathoning your way through the game. Even so, it’s still quite good, especially as platformers on iOS go, and if that style of gameplay is your thing, then we definitely recommend checking out the free four-stage (and one bonus stage) demo.