Family Guy 2
| Family Guy 2

Given the number of television series that make the leap to mobile in some form or other, you might expect those behind these stars of the small screen to spend a bit more time deducing how best to translate their appeal.

In this context, Family Guy's play on the platformer feels almost archaic, given every man and his dog's current fascination with Angry Birds (see Monty Python's Cow Tossing for details).

But, in spite of Family Guy 2 keeping things comparatively simple, and avoiding the trajectory physics temptation, it's little more than an advertising hoarding for its licence.

Level playing field

It's the kind of game you'll feel you've played several hundred times before.

Levels are typical run and jump affairs where the idea is to pick up the uranium pellets that decorate every platform and race to the finish.

As well as jumping – or double jumping and gliding – Stewie and Brian each have a special move in their locker to enable them to take on the array of foes who patrol the stages.

Stewie's uppercut is arguably the most useful (Brian instead throws something putrid that results in his assailants spewing their guts out), though these are only available when Family Guy 2's 'power-up mode' is in play.

This appears to be largely automatic, with characters tending to power up when the design of the levels calls for such abilities to be accessible.

In reality, though, this is about 90 per cent of play.

No licence for a licence

Even with such powers available – and, if you're playing as Brian, the appearance of the odd bomb or two – Family Guy 2 rarely shifts out of first gear.

The boss battles offer the most excitement, but as with large portions of the rest of the game, they feel like they could have been lifted directly out of any one of the thousands of 2D platformers released in the last 20 years.

There's nothing wrong with honouring the past, of course, and many may argue that opportunities to forage new ground in this particular genre are few in number, especially when constrained by what is a major licence.

But, ironically, the Family Guy name is done little service by what can only be described as an uninspired attempt to cash in on its acclaim. Sadly then, this game fails to evoke any of the animated series’s wit, freshness, and bite, and falls as flat as one of Meg’s attempted gags.

Family Guy 2

Platforming by numbers, Family Guy 2 is neither engaging to play, nor especially flattering to the franchise
Keith Andrew
Keith Andrew
With a fine eye for detail, Keith Andrew is fuelled by strong coffee, Kylie Minogue and the shapely curve of a san serif font. He's also Pocket Gamer's resident football gaming expert and, thanks to his work on, monitors the market share of all mobile OSes on a daily basis.