Bit.Trip.Runner was one of the best games on WiiWare and it only made sense to make a sequel. However, instead of taking the pixel-art approach, Gaijin decided to change the style, but that’s within the story. Now Commander.Video has arm-bands and sneakers and is ready to keep running in Runner 2.
Gaijin didn’t give too many details on the story at PAX East but showed off Levels 1-1 to 1-19 and it already looked amazing. The look of the game is much more whimsical, almost like a breathing cartoon. But his trademark moves remain the same from running and jumping to springing and kicking. You’ll have to combine moves in order to get through the new levels.
Let me just say, the level design has gotten crazier with the new additions. While you’ll still have the same old gold and making yourself faster power-ups, you’ll find coins and keys alongside the paths. The coins will net you new costumes and you’ll be able to obtain new characters such as Uncle Dill and Whetfart Cheeseburger (we’re not making this up). Keys will unlock new paths in levels, since branching paths are new to the series to find more things.
One thing some people complain about the original Bit.Trip.Runner was the lack of checkpoints since you have to do everything perfectly in one playthrough. There’ll be checkpoints but you’ll get more points for jumping over it and going through a challenge and is for the Runner fans who want that challenge again.
If you manage to perfect a level, you’ll enter a cannon at the end and will have to time it right in order to hit the middle. Oh, and you can dance now with the tap of the triggers. But it lasts a full beat so you’ll get more points at the risk of possibly hurting yourself. Gaijin said there’d be a ton of dance moves for Commander.Video from things like Russian dances to hip-hop moves.
Gaijin are looking at an October-November release for the game which might coincide with the upcoming Wii U since they have dev kits. It’ll be a difficult wait and playing it three times over the three days of PAX East certainly did help as it was that good of a demo. We’re looking forward to shaking our groove thing while avoiding obstacles come Fall.
Check out more awesome XBLA game previews and impressions from PAX East 2012!