Imagine making a plague capable of destroying the entire human population. That’s the object of Pandemic 2. There are two game play modes available in Pandemic 2: realistic and relaxed. Realistic mode has more traits for the diseases and is a longer, more in-depth game. Each mode includes 3 possible disease types to choose from, each of which has different stats to change the way the game goes. The three types are virus, bacteria and parasite. Once you get into the game itself, you can spend evolution points on symptoms such as fever, vomiting and organ failure. You can also gain resistance to different climates and to medicine. There are also four ways your disease can spread that are available for purchase. As your disease becomes more and more known and widespread, the people in the game world will begin to close their borders and try anything to stop your disease from spreading farther. There is a log on the left hand side of the screen that shows you things like weather such as flooding, drought and earthquakes, disease spread and government actions to stop the spread of your disease.
The interface for this game is very easy to use and very logical. There is also a video tutorial available from a link on the start-up of the game. I didn’t find watching the tutorial to be necessary, but some people might need it. Everything is available on a subscreen that can be accessed by clicking on the main play screen and also pauses the game while active so that time stops passing.
The major flaw with Pandemic 2 is inherent to the closing of ports and borders and the way it was designed. There is a little island off of Africa called Madagascar. In Pandemic 2, Madagascar is sort of the holy grail because of how hard it is to infect. There is only 1 port and it closes very quickly at the slightest sign of anything. You can literally have a disease with no symptoms and Madagascar will close its port. The fact that governments begin to act even when there are no symptoms is somewhat bothersome. I can’t even begin to stress how annoying Madagascar is. There are actually a lot of jokes about it if you do a quick little google search. Here’s a link to one that I found to be rather a good example of what it seems like must be happening. http://media.photobucket.com/image/recent/CaptainFailcon/SHUTDOWNEVERYTHING.jpg
Well, now I guess I should rate Pandemic 2. The game is fun, albeit long. The interface is easy to use and understand. But what bothers me deeply is that I’m not really sure you can ever win. Please, if you’ve ever managed to win Pandemic 2 WITHOUT starting in Madagascar, I want to hear about it. So I award Pandemic 2 with 3 out of 5 Hearts.
For those of you who would like to check out Pandemic 2, you can find it at addictinggames.com or go directly to http://www.addictinggames.com/pandemic2.html