A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
There's no positive messages expressed, other than having to try and try again to succeed and pass levels in the game.
Positive Role Models
The characters don't have any significant character development, and there doesn't seem like there's a lot of info about why they're doing what they're doing.
Ease of Play
The control scheme is kept relatively simple, but this is a roguelite game, which means that each level is randomly created and constantly changing. While there's no difficulty settings, the further you go, the harder the game gets.
Violence & Scariness
If you die, you simply restart. The violence is very light and monsters will simply blow apart without blood or gore. This is very cartoonish. Your character uses rifles and ammo packs found on the levels to shoot at enemies or other players.
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There's some crude humor, like characters emerging from the butt of a snake-like creature.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that GONNER2 is a downloadable action game for Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and Windows PCs. There's a storyline, although nothing's ever said and there's no sound to the game. But play contains crude humor, with the playable creature deposited onto the map from the butt of a snake-like or worm-like creature. The idea is to traverse the level and return to the safety of the snake/worm's mouth. The violence is very mild, and the field is procedurally created -- meaning that this roguelite title creates new maps with every play. It does have elements of a platform-style arcade game (jumping and shooting monsters), and some of the maps take place in water so players can swim across them.
Is It Any Good?
Colorful, somewhat addictive, and ever-changing maps give the game it's charm, and the difficulty ramps up and beckons players back. GONNER2 has a story and promptly doesn't bother to tell the player what it is, or even what really needs to be done. The hero, Ikk, is pooped out on a map, picks up a rifle and ammo, and tries to avoid or kill bosses and mini-bosses to get to the other end to be swallowed back up by the worm-like creature that dropped him off to begin with. The game has no sound, and has a cooperative mode that allows up to four others to jump in. But since this is a 2D side-scrolling affair, the point of view and map tends to be centered on the first player. Die and you start back near the beginning, which can be frustrating if you're trying to make progress and are repeatedly unlucky.
Where the game succeeds, though is in the ease of play, the brightly colored maps and the procedurally drawn maps that make no two play sessions feel the same. Honestly, GONNER2's strength is in its game mechanics, which are rock solid. Keeping the focus on the game's controls puts an emphasis on strategically working through the levels. Plus, some luck can play a role in making your way through a stage, and reflexive elements are also involved to test your skill. GONNER2 builds off the original game, offers more in terms of multiplayer, ramps up the challenge and is nice little drop-in-and-play game that would be a good introduction to the roguelite genre for younger gamers.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.