2D brawler sequel Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl 2 from GameMill Entertainment, Nickelodeon, and Fair Play Labs is waiting for you on PS5. Check out our Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl 2 review!
2D brawler sequel Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl 2 from GameMill Entertainment, Nickelodeon, and Fair Play Labs is waiting for you on PlayStation 4. I got a chance to review the first Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl on PlayStation 4 a couple of years ago, so I definitely wanted to see what the sequel had improved on. While the previous game was a fun one to play, it still had some wrinkles here and there, keeping it from fighting game greatness, especially when compared to the golden standard that is Super Smash Bros. Ultimate on the Nintendo Switch.
Yes, the easy way to describe the previous game and this sequel is “What if Super Smash Bros. but with Nickelodeon characters?” Last time around, we got 20 characters included with the base game, along with Garfield and Shredder, which were added as free DLC. There were also three paid DLC characters, bringing the total to 25 thanks to Jenny, Rocko, and Hugh Neutron joining the series.
For this sequel, the base group includes 25 characters in total, with some being new to the series. The full list of characters is as follows:
Aang (Avatar: The Last Airbender)
Angry Beavers (The Angry Beavers)
April (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
Azula (Avatar: The Last Airbender)
Danny Phantom (Danny Phantom)
Donatello (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
El Tigre (El Tigre: The Adventures of Manny Rivera)
Ember (Danny Phantom)
Gerald (Hey Arnold!)
Grandma Gertie (Hey Arnold!)
Jenny Wakeman (My Life as a Teenage Robot)
Jimmy Neutron (Jimmy Neutron)
Korra (The Legend of Korra)
Lucy Loud (The Loud House)
Mecha Plankton (SpongeBob SquarePants)
Nigel (The Wild Thornberrys)
Patrick (SpongeBob SquarePants)
Raphael (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
Ren & Stimpy (The Ren & Stimpy Show)
Rocko (Rocko’s Modern Life)
SpongeBob (SpongeBob SquarePants)
Squidward (SpongeBob SquarePants)
Zim (Invader Zim)
The characters new to this sequel are Angry Beavers, Azula, Donatello, El Tigre, Ember, Gerald, Grandma Gertie, Jimmy Neutron, Mecha Plankton, Raphael, and Squidward. And yes, there will also be some DLC characters releasing for Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl 2, with Mr. Krabs (SpongeBob SquarePants), Iroh (Avatar: The Last Airbender), Rocksteady (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles), and Zuko (Avatar: The Last Airbender) joining the fight in 2024.
Along with the Battle Mode, which allows you to play local matches against friends or CPU opponents, there’s also the Online multiplayer, where you can take on casual or ranked matches. You can also play the single-player Arcade Mode, play some mini-games, or train at the dojo. New to this game is a Campaign mode with a story and a roguelike twist. What will you be dealing with? The story goes as follows:
SpongeBob and Patrick are chilling in Bikini Bottom, blowing some bubbles underwater, as one does. Unfortunately, a weird star-shaped portal pops up and swallows Patrick! When another portal pops up, SpongeBob bravely jumps in to try and save his friend. Unfortunately, when SpongeBob finds Patrick, he seems to be under some sort of mind-control. After SpongeBob beats Patrick, he returns to normal.
When defeated, you’ll meet Clockwork, who can rewind time to bring you back to right before you were defeated so that you can give it another try. He’s the one who informs you that Vlad Plasmius is the one behind everything and is the one that needs to be stopped before it’s too late. He wants to control the minds of everyone in the universe… and in the multiverse! It’s up to you to free others who have fallen under Plasmius’ control so that they can join the fight and save all universes from his evil plan.
You’ll control your character with the left analog stick, jumping, and double jumping with the Triangle button. You can attack with the X and Circle buttons to unleash a light and heavy attack, respectively. The Square button is for special attacks, depending on if you’re using it in the neutral position or by pressing down, left, right, or up on the left analog stick. Each character will have different special abilities to use, so be sure to give all of them a try! The R2 button will allow you to shield yourself. Press the R1 button to grab an opponent. As for the L1 button, it will be used for taunting. Once you’ve filled up the Super Special Bar, you’ll be able to unleash it by pressing the L2 and X buttons.
In the Campaign, you’ll be able to obtain some power-ups to aid you during each run. Power-ups will improve your moves, so you’ll need to try them out to see which ones best suit your playing style. Power-ups are split into different categories – Normal, Uncommon, Rare, Epic, and Legendary. Common ones include Hyper Corrosive Croutons, which has projectiles dealing 50% more damage; Cabbage Cookies, which heals 75 damage right away; or XJ-2’s Hiccups, which will make your character fire a seeking projectile every 10 seconds.
You can also equip Perks, which will boost your character during your run. You can spend the Slimies you collect to unlock and upgrade perks. You can increase the number of Perks you can equip by buying additional Perk Slots. The perks that you can unlock include Ignorance is Bliss, which has you start all runs with an extra life. There’s also Hydrodynamic Design, which will boost your movement speed by 10%. Another option is Ninjitsu Skills, which adds an extra air jump, which can prove to be vital for your survival!
As you move through the different nodes in the Campaign, you’ll sometimes run into Powdered Toast Man, who will act as the game’s merchant. You can spend the Nickelodeon Blimps that you collect to purchase more power-ups for your character to grow stronger for that particular run. If you’re lucky, some of them might be on sale! You could add Beaver Fever, which makes light attacks deal 10% more damage. You might also want to consider Granpa Lou’s Wrestling, a power-up that will give charge attacks have a 30% chance of inflicting stun on your opponent. Power-ups can also be upgraded, so if you get the same power-up that you’re already equipped with, you’ll make it stronger.
And now, let’s talk about the trophies! With this one being a retail release, that means you can expect to find a full trophy list with a Platinum trophy waiting for you. And since it’s a Cross-Buy release, your purchase will allow you to get both the PS4 and PS5 versions at no extra cost, with each version featuring its own trophy list. Each list will be split into 10 Bronze trophies, 13 Silver trophies, and 5 Gold trophies for you to work on. What will you need to do to get that Platinum? You’ll have to, among other things, clear the Arcade Mode with 1, 5, 15, and all (standard) brawlers, complete Arcade Mode without losing a single stock, complete Arcade Mode in the highest difficulty setting, complete in 100 local or online battles in total, beat an opponent without losing a single stock in local or online battle, complete your first Campaign Mode run, beat each of the bosses in the Campaign Mode, and unlock all Campaign Mode Perks, to name some examples.
Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl 2 is a sequel that improves on what its predecessor did a couple of years ago while adding a new Campaign Mode, making changes to the overall roster by introducing more than 10 new fighters. This is something on which fans of the previous game are not going to agree upon. While there are some more obscure characters added to the list – say, the Angry Beavers and that Jenny Wakeman is part of the main roster and not DLC – most of the characters are from more popular franchises, and once you factor in the DLC characters, series such as Avatar: The Last Airbender and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles will have four characters in the game, with SpongeBob Squarepants moving up to five characters once Mr. Krabs lands.
Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl 2 is out as a Cross-Buy title, so your $49.99 purchase will allow you to download both the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 versions of the game at no extra cost. You can also go all-in and get the Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl 2 Ultimate Edition, which includes the base game along with the Season Pass and the Costume Pack, which will give you access to 4 additional brawlers which will launch in 2024 – Mr. Krabs, Rocksteady, Iroh, and Zuko – along with a bonus costume for each character, all for a $79.99 asking price.
This Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl 2 review is based on a PlayStation 5 copy provided by GameMill Entertainment.