Crazy Climber 2, Arcade

The 1988 sequel to Crazy Climber, Crazy Climber 2 is much the same as before. That is: scaling up the side of large buildings; avoiding hazards as you do so.

And, like the first game, it was developed by Nihon Bussan Co. Ltd. and manufactured by Nichibutsu.

Graphically, the sequel is much more advanced than the first Crazy Climber. Buildings now have some colour, and the animation of the climber is much more realistic than before. Well, maybe “realistic” is not the word… Just more interesting. There are real advertisement billboards, and the Kong-like monster from the first game makes a return. As does the chopper to rescue you from the top of the building.

The climbing mechanic is the same as before, ie. it uses twin joysticks to move the climber’s arms up, down, and sideways. Your guy can only climb if his arms are in a position to grab something, though. It’s hard to explain, but his arms must either be inside a vertical channel, holding onto one window, or spread over two. He can hold the gaps between windows, but not pull himself up using them.

Hazards constantly fall from above, so moving horizontally to avoid them is key to survival, while at the same time moving upwards.

A constant theme in Crazy Climber 2 are people dropping items from windows. Usually from directly above you, and these will knock you off the building, and lose you a life, if they ding you. But it is possible to survive them. I don’t fully understand how or why, but it might be something to do with how you’re holding on to a window if something hits you. I managed to survive multiple hits on the head and not fall off, if my climber’s arms were in brace position…

It has to be said: Crazy Climber 2 is an insanely difficult video game. Stage one is manageable, with some practise (and maybe a few quicksaves), but stage two I thought was nigh on impossible. Even with quicksaves. The falling girders that ‘float’ and change lanes as they drop are ridiculous. The cranes are highly annoying. In fact: every hazard in this game is designed to give you pain… The only light relief you get is the odd love scene…

If you finally make it to the top of a building you then have one chance to grab the landing ski of the rescue helicopter. One chance… it’s ridiculous! In less than five seconds you have to shimmy your guy into position and raise an arm to grab the chopper. Believe me: it’s very easy to get his arms in a twist during this crucial manoeuvre and miss it…

I wish Crazy Climber 2 wasn’t so difficult. It’s interesting enough to warrant further play, but I’m stuck on the second stage and can’t see a way forward. There’s so much RNG* in this game that you have to get lucky to get through it.

*= Random Number Generator

More: Crazy Climber 2 on Wikipedia

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