Keio Flying Squadron 2 | Players: 1 | Release: 1996 | Developer: Victor


"Keio Flying Squadron 2, in action!"

I have a bit of a platform game soft spot, and with relatively few Saturn reviews done, I thought I'd give you a view of this gem. The story starts with an incredible cartoon intro. Himiko 'The pompous queen of ancients' steals one of the orbs (see the screen below) from Rami's family. (Rami is the heroine you play as in this game). Before she can get away with it 'Dr Pon' (An evil raccoon with an IQ of 1400?!) steals it from her. Rami then finds out that when she finds all six orbs, she will gain incredible wealth. She is forced by her grandma to go after Dr Pon and to track down all the orbs. (including the stolen one). Rami puts on her 'Bunny suit' (!) and starts chasing Dr Pon. Well, there's a story you don't see every day..

The first Keio game was based on 2D shooting levels only. This time the gameplay is far more varied; One moment you have to complete a bunch of platform levels, next you're riding Spot (the green pet dragon, a familiar face from the first game) while blasting away in horizontal shooter action. There are loads of different background-themes to be seen, like forests, theme parks, swimming bits and even some outer space levels. This really makes for a greatly varied game and certainly is one of the game's best points.

Just like about every other platform game or 2D shooter in existance, there's a big selection of bosses to battle as well. While in most cases these bosses come in very common shapes (tanks, planes, animals) the bosses in Keio 2 are truely bizarre (but still very cool). See some of the screens and you'll know what I mean. This game also features a great amount of cut scenes which both gives you an idea of your next target and show most of the (highly amusing) story elements.

This dinner is about to be abruptly ended...
The key to a secret(!).

The game is split into five chapters. The first chapter is based on the chase for Dr Pon and Himiko. After Rami finds out about the orbs she proceeds to the 'Underground kingdom' (chapter 2 ) which features a cool (and hard) moving train level. Chapter 3 is based on a amusement park. A rollercoaster level, a dive in the park pool and (again) some seriously weird bosses. In chapter four Rami leaves earth and rides spot again in a shooter level (way into outer space), gets chased by hordes of mad ninjas and -surprise- battles even more mad bosses. The fifth and final chapter is one of the most amusing ones. Rami enters a martial arts tournament (some great cut scenes) and the story ends in a very surprising way...but I won't spoil it, you really need to check it out yourself.

The game automaticly saves after each chapter, which can be -as Rami would say- 'A real drag', because to replay earlier levels you'd have to start all over again. It doesn't really make the game much harder, though. There's lots of secret places to be found, which contain various extra lifes and continues as well as various other items such as Bunny dolls (100 of them earns you an extra life). Another thing that makes the stages of this game so good, is that they can be completed in multiple ways. Nearly all the platform levels have different routes, including some very hard to find ones that will spray you with bonuses. It will be a major task finding them all, believe me.

There's three main weapons to collect; 'The hammer of Dreams' (good for bashing your enemies with), 'The umbrella of love' (which can be used to float as well as attack with) and the 'Arrow of hope' (a bow, bit of a crap weapon, really). These weapons are a real must, because apart from coming in handy to dispose of the bad guys, they also protect you from being killed instantly. (When Rami gets hit while carrying one of these weapons she will drop it first). Because some of the levels are pretty long, it's nice to see the developers added some restart points as well. 

The shooting bits from the first game are back!
A humorous mini-game in action

Keio 2 is such a nice game because it's filled with loads of cool little extras. Should you be able to locate a Spot icon, you will enter a bonus level in which you'll be able to gain loads of points by bouncing yourself all the way to the top of the level. Loads of seemingly 'static' scenery can be picked up as well; statues, crates and even complete houses(!). It can be used to kill enemies with, gain (or lose) points by performing certain actions with them and some of the later levels feature some cool mini-games based on these objects (see above). 

Another funky extra is the image gallery. By doing really well in the main game you will unlock various pictures in the gallery, some of which are rather crazy. To unlock the final picture you will need to do some serious level exploring! Should you do bad, however (which is easy, every time you get hit you'll lose five precious points, compared to gaining just one for defeating most enemies), the game will help you by unlocking various gameplay hints instead of pictures.

Altogether, Keio flying squadron 2 is a very varied game and certainly one of the best 2D Saturn platform games. Get a copy and you won't be disappointed!

Go on..tell me you love these graphics!


While it's 'just a 2D platformer', it still manages to impress you, thanks to the
varied backgrounds, colourful graphics and cool sprite effects. There's loads of
small background jokes for those with a keen eye. Very nice intro and cut-scenes.


Some atmospheric background tunes in the right places, coupled with a couple
of decent action ones. Nice use of SFX and speech.

Very varied gameplay including platform, puzzle and shooting bits.
The controls are simple and work well.

A little easy on the easiest level but the hard mode is a tough challenge.
Loads of hidden rooms, bonus rounds, artwork and others things to be found.

Graphics 8
Sound 8
Gameplay 9
Value 8
Overall 84




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