fuzionf201.jpgHudson is no stranger to the party game genre. Each year they come out with a new edition of Mario Party and now they’re bringing the genre to the 360, minus Mario. In Fuzion Frenzy 2 the setting is an intergalactic tournament with forty plus mini games to play spread across seven planets. When a tournament starts players select a planet like Blazer (fire related games) or Eternite (games that defy gravity) or Icicle (well I’m sure you can figure out what’s going on there). Unlike Mario Party or other party games there is no board to play on. Fuzion Frenzy 2 cuts that component out and you move straight into the mini games.

 

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fuzionf202.jpgFuzion Frenzy 2 has some entertaining mini games like Sumo Paint where you roll around in a hamster ball painting the ground with your color. Whoever covers the most spots on the floating platform at the end of sixty seconds is the winner. Amoeba hunting is another cool game where you grab bombs and try to blow up slow moving blobs. You want to capture as many blobs in the blast radius to maximize your score and seek out the gold colored amoebas which are worth extra points. Ice billiards is a neat game where all of the players are on a sheet of ice and you have to push coins frozen in blocks of ice into your goal. Judgment Tower has four players race to input on button codes and Cargo Chaos has four players run with the analog stick to avoid getting sucked into a giant vacuum. Few games have the players ride mechs like Hopping no Stopping where you try to hop on a sea creature when it surfaces and Loader Madness where you ride an unresponsive robot while collecting coins. During tournaments you can net ten points if you win a mini game, but cards effect who actually “wins” a round.

 

fuzionf203.jpgBefore you select a game you have the option of using a card to multiply your score.  At the beginning of every tournament you’re given a 2x multiplier card and a steal point effect card. If you use a 2x multiplayer and you’re in second place you will win the game because you have more points. In between mini games the DJ will randomly have quick five second card catching games where players run to grab cards with the analog stick. You can obtain an extra card like the coveted reverse multiplier card that makes the multiplier cards divide points instead of multiply them and cards that let players select the next mini game even if they don’t win a match. The cards add a bit of strategy to the mini games, but at times they throw tournaments out of balance. If you get a 6x multiplayer card and win a mini game you are favored to win a planet. At the end of each mini game whoever has the most points gets to select the next game and gets a bonus royale power up. At the end of three mini games all four players enter a battle royale. If you’re on Moisture the battle is underwater so you need to fight for oxygen on top of punching your opponents and if the battle is on Amuseth, the casino planet, one player gets to carry a hammer to knock coins out of the other players. Besides Amuseth’s rumble most of the other battles use the same basic three hit punch combo and the only major change is the environment, slippery ice or an arena where lightning falls down from the sky on the players. The royale power ups you earned earlier can boost your defense, attack or give you a second life bar. After the tournament all four players move on to the next planet and this continues until one player wins the required amount of planets.

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fuzionf205.jpgYou’re going to want to play in tournament mode when you unwrap Fuzion Frenzy 2, that’s the way to unlock extra mini games. After you’ve unlocked everything you’ll probably play mini game frenzy, which cuts out the annoying DJ and gets straight to the mini games. Playing any party game alone gets boring fast, but Fuzion Frenzy 2 remedies this problem with Xbox Live play. You can log on and set up tournaments with other players or select a quick mini game frenzy match. Online I haven’t noticed much lag and games like Super Slam Dunk where you fight for a basketball to slam into a hoop are a blast to play online. However, there aren’t that many people playing online compared to Lost Planet or Gears of War where you can always find open games. If you want to get four players in at once you might have to wait ten minutes for a tournament. You can put in computer controlled players to get matches started quickly, but it isn’t nearly as fun as playing with full house of four human players. I imagine this problem will change if more people pick up Fuzion Frenzy 2, but if people don’t the best feature of Fuzion Frenzy 2 isn’t going to be worth much.

 

If you’re a Gamerscore addict Fuzion Frenzy 2 is one of the easiest games to get a full 1000 points from. In around five hours or so you can net all of the points, which means playing all of the mini games and beating some people online. Fuzion Frenzy 2 is a short game, too short of a game. While some of the mini games are enjoyable (I’ll never get sick of pushing other people into asteroids in Debris Field Derby) you’re not going to be playing Fuzion Frenzy 2 for a long time. It’s a game you can pick up and play every once in a while, but it’s not going to suck you in and it won’t be the life of the party for more than half an hour.

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