Very few franchises tap into a player’s simple joy centers the way Peggle does. So when I saw Peggle 2 was releasing on the Xbox One, this was a day one purchase for me. Peggle’s beautiful simplicity is captured once again in its sequel.
I will thoroughly admit that it feels odd to praise a game for not trying too hard to innovate as the Peggle 2 formula delivers exactly what you’re looking for – more Peggle. It is all there – from the orange pegs leading to multipliers to the cavalcade of lights and sound generated by completing the level. That is not to say that Peggle 2 is without change. There are plenty of iterative changes that enhance the player’s experience. With a new board view, new music for each master and little homages to the original Peggle, Peggle 2 keeps you entertained.
Along with the few new goodies, there are 4 new masters in the game. As expected, you begin the game at the Peggle Institute with Bjorn and his Super Guide power to show you ropes and get acquainted. Next, you meet Jeffrey the troll whose Bowlder power has you rely on size and weight to get the job done. After Jeffrey, you meet Berg and his Deep Freeze power. Deep Freeze allows you to use pegs like billiard balls causing physics mischief wherever they go. Gnorman and his Uber Volt strike next with a very powerful ability where your ball’s collision with a peg causes 2 nearby pegs to also be struck. Lastly, you meet Luna, a ghostly girl whose Nightshade power allows your ball to pass through the blue pegs and head straight to the orange pegs. It is very handy when orange pegs are deeply buried beneath layers on the board.
While there is much to be praised in Peggle 2, I do wonder why for $11.99 plus tax, I only receive 5 masters and 60 boards. Not that I want to sound ungrateful, but it leads me to suspect how PopCap plans on doling out new content through the currently unavailable store and if the $12 was simply a taste of the Peggle crack in order to get me hooked for future purchases. It’s especially true since I’ve gone through all but 2 of the levels and although there are trials and optional objectives to still complete, I’ve essentially finished the game.
Overall, Peggle 2 delivers on everything you want in a Peggle game. You simply need to plug yourself in and be swept away by its beautiful simplicity. With 60 levels, each with 3 optional objectives, 60 trial levels, each to increase your skill and multiplayer capabilities, there is plenty of content to keep you coming back to the Peggle experience. Like I said above, there is a small part of me that worries about whether or not PopCap has held masters and levels back to nickel and dime us, but for $11.99 plus tax, it is still a reasonable value for the money spent on Xbox One. Unless you really aren’t a fan of Peggle, there is no reason to not pick up Peggle 2 and experience the Extreme Fever on Xbox One.