The people behind Ravenous Games appear to be firm advocates of a familiar old idiom - if it ain't broke, don't fix it. League of Evil 2 [$2.99/Lite], the much-anticipated sequel to their sadistic platformer from 2011, isn't anything new but it's certainly still worth your hard-earned cash. However, before you rush out to grab their latest product, you probably want to ask yourself one question first: how much do you enjoy dying?

Because the game is hard. Really hard. Like its predecessor, League of Evil 2 is jam-packed with things that want to kill you dead. From ninjas with light sabers to shirtless Rambo lookalikes to spike pits, you're going to see it all. The only thing League of Evil 2 doesn't throw at you is a ravenous kitchen sink hell-bent on washing you out.

The level design is absolutely nefarious as well. Be prepared to drop down long passages only to explode atop a bed of sharp, pointy things. Be ready to accidentally jump into stray projectiles. The worst thing about this is there's no one to blame but yourself. League of Evil 2 never really throws you into impossible situations. It merely demands that you have the reflexes of a greased-up mongoose on wheels.

Under ordinary circumstances, all that I've said would probably make the game impossible for all but the most hardcore. However, much like its progenitor, League of Evil 2 is blessed with wonderfully responsive virtual controls and a minimal amount of buttons. There are only three, in fact. You move the protagonist, otherwise known as the Agent, with the left and right buttons. To jump, you press B. To double-jump, you, uh, press B twice. And finally, A is for punching and kicking things. It's pretty straightforward.

Much like in the original League of Evil, the story here is pretty simple. As the Agent, your mission is to stop the League of Evil – a coalition formed from an assortment of identical-looking evil scientists – by punching them in the face. Literally. In fact, that's the goal of each level: to find the resident researcher and decapitate him with one blow. (Don't ask how that works.)

And now that we're done with the mandatory explanations, let's move on to the differences between League of Evil 2 and the first League of Evil. The biggest change here is the visual style. Instead of retro-looking sprites, Ravenous Games went with a more cartoony, retina-quality approach this time around. I'm not sure if I particularly like the change but it's certainly appealing, nonetheless. There are also an assortment of boss battles, a hefty 100 levels to start with, costumes, and comic book-style cut-scenes to introduce each new world.

One curious change in this sequel is in how the double jump works. In the first game, you could run off a ledge, jump in mid-air, and then jump again in mid-air. This mid-air double jump was an integral strategy in the first game in order to get difficult level completion times in the first League of Evil, and it seems strange that it would be changed for no discernible reason. However, the developers have acknowledged that the mid-air double jump will be restored in the next update.

I'm not the biggest platformer fan in the world, but I'm in love with this one anyway. Though I could have done with a few more collectibles and a deeper story, there's not much to complain about here. If you want to experience Super Meat Boy on the go, League of Evil 2 is, well, the way to go.

TouchArcade Rating

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  • Eraser74

    Only three buttons??? Left AND right, A for punching and B for jumping. Hmmm that makes four by my count.

    • http://coderkid.co.cc/ Matt Curtis

      Stop bitching, I hate when people do that simple because people make ONE mistake. A simple 'There's four buttons, not three, right?' would've sufficed. Or maybe I'm bitching....I'm going home...

      • casskhaw

        You are my new favorite person, sir. 

        But the lesson to be learned here is that you should always take ONE more cup of coffee while you proof read.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Spammo-Twatbury/100002426967566 Spammo Twatbury

         You're bitching.

      • http://coderkid.co.cc/ Matt Curtis

        Yep, definitely supposed to trust your opinion with a name like "Spammo Twatbury" but hey, maybe you're right.

  • http://coderkid.co.cc/ Matt Curtis

    I don't know about this one - as it's own game, it's pretty good. But when I got to around the 2nd/3rd chapter, I got extremely bored - everything felt the same, monotonous. Really not sure why.

  • Derek Traver

    I love this game. The new art is excellent, the gameplay is solid as hell and I love chasing perfect runs. The only problem is (as Ravenous confessed on the TA forums) many of the times in Chapter 3 and up are literally impossible; apparently they tweaked some stuff before release and didn't change the three star times.

    They're fixing them, and adding back in the extra "fall-from-ledge" double jump from LoE1 in the next patch, though :)

    • Dirty Pancakes

      Word, I actually did the math on the possible distance covered on some of the missions on Chapter 3 and up and came to that same conclusion lmao.  I was really trying for like 15 minutes to wall jump like a fool.

  • http://twitter.com/crunchewy Crunchewy

    I was pretty disappointed in this because it's essentially just a reskin. Yes, it's new levels, but overall it's pretty uninspired. I only played it for a short time before moving onto to other stuff, and certainly far, far less than I played the original. I'm not sure what I was expecting, but I couldn't help but be disappointed.

    • http://coderkid.co.cc/ Matt Curtis

       +1000000000000000

  • himanshu modi

    I was honestly expecting a proper platformer, with longer, exploratory levels with LoE2 characters. Especially since I remember the devs stating in the upcoming thread that the levels were going to be longer. I still hope that day will come soon. Not that I am not having fun with this LoE1 in new skin, and will most definitely 3-star all the levels once the next update is out. Also the boss battles are fun... wonder why there's no boss battle at the end of world 1 though...

  • Tim Harding

    LoE1 is one of my favorite games ever, but this just doesn't live up.  The change in graphic style bothers me, the movement doesn't seem as fluid, and I'm left wondering why this sequel exists.  I don't see anything 'better' about this game, just different levels and different graphics.  Almost seems like an in-app purchase for an extra 100 levels in LoE1 would have sufficed.

  • James Wagner

    Game has been a absolute disappointment for myself. I haven't even been able to play it, it crashes immediately upon trying to load the first level and I'm not alone in this. It has tons of reviews talking about crashes and a lot of people even lost all their game progress.

    There's been two updates since release and supposedly the progress eating bug has been squashed but my personal problem of it crashing still persists. That's not to mention the last update for the original LOE has made it where it occasionally crashes on me when it had never crashed once in the past.

    And I'm not using a older device or anything. I am using a iPod Touch 4g.

    This is something you guys should mention in your review. Just taking a quick glance at customer reviews would of revealed this.

    • http://twitter.com/Slow_Shoes Luis Martinez

      I have to agree with you. I have it running on my 3GS iPhone and still have constant crashing and lost save progress (apparently it was due to an iCloud saving bug). The jump mechanic is different than the first which really throws me off as well. The achievements compared to the first are very uninspired and not creative. The 3-star times are way off and unrealistic (both too long and short) as well (the developers are going to tweak them apparently.)

      All this being said, I still find myself playing it when I can. I suffer through the crashes, because I see how great it could be. It just needs another month of polish and updates. Hopefully it will then be as satisfying as the original.

  • knoids

    I really like this game

  • Rob Sharp

    My only complaint is losing my save games with the update...some levels I just NEVER wanted to attempt again and looks like I have to now. Update was worth it for the colors in the comic book cut scenes, was disappointed originally they were in black and white. Next update should include more pages or even a free e-comic :-)

League of Evil 2 Reviewed by Cassandra Khaw on . Rating: 3.5