Slipping on the gloves of the fresh-faced KO Kid, Glu's sequel to its crazy boxing game has you competing against a dozen hilariously styled pugilists for prize belts.
Three circuits of increasing difficulty pair you off with outrageous competitors such as brawny Shogun, whose fists glow in the dark, showy hip-hop maven 15 Cent, who stuns with his golden grill, and electrifying Dynamo, who shorts out with the right punch.
These comic boxers are the best part of Super KO Boxing 2, as they lend the game enormous charm and ensure variety in each bout. No fighter is the same, making each match an amusing affair. Learning how to counter each character's moves is challenging and even when you're knocked out, the antics are funny enough to earn a chuckle.
Great controls help cultivate the easy-going vibe.
Several options are provided that mix touch and tilt input, all which grant precise command over the KO Kid. The default button scheme works particularly well, though an alternative touch zone interface functions just fine. Moving left or right can be done with buttons or tilting your handset.
Basic blows come in two flavours: low and high punches. You can also pull off hooks by moving to one side and throwing a high punch. Successfully land consecutive hits and you fill up a flaming super punch gauge in the lower-right corner. Tap this when filled and you nail an opponent with an unblockable attack.
The option to enhance the potency of these moves with upgrade points or even unlock new attacks would be great, though their absence keeps the game from becoming complicated. Lacking such depth, Super KO Boxing 2 always ensures it remains accessible.
While simplicity in control is to be applauded, a limited selection of modes poses a problem. Beyond the main Circuit mode, the game presents one-off Versus fights and more than a dozen objective-based bouts in Challenge mode. These are all played as the KO Kid; there's no option for tinkering with the other boxers nor is multiplayer supported.
Without any sort of head-to-head play, Super KO Boxing 2 misses out on the greatest potential fun.
Omitting online play is forgivable, though foregoing local head-to-head bouts is puzzling. The innate two-player structure of boxing demands Bluetooth or at least local Wi-Fi play, yet it's been totally overlooked.
Of course, this also deals a serious blow to the game's replay value. As enjoyable a single player experience Super KO Boxing 2 is, its basic structure makes the absence of multiplayer all the more glaring. The only glare from this stylish game should be from the slick visuals though, not missing modes.
A potential heavyweight ends up being a fun featherweight instead.