Also available on Game Boy and PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Windows via Disney Afternoon Collection
DuckTales 2 is one of the more attainable "super rare" games for NES collectors. Being released several years after the release of the Super Nintendo, it saw a very low print run, making copies of the game extremely uncommon. Add to that the fact that it's an absolutely incredible game that improves upon its predecessor in pretty much every way imaginable, and you've got a perfect recipe for rarity and demand.
The game follows the same basic formula as the first DuckTales game; you play as impossibly lovable capitalist Scrooge McDuck on a quest to get even richer in a platformer adventure that spans five worlds (plus a secret sixth world). Every complaint I had about the first game was fixed here; levels are less obtuse in design, the pogo mechanics feel fantastic, and rope/vine/chain climbing is exactly as response as one would hope. It's a shame that the legitimate cartridge is so expensive because this is the pinnacle of Disney licensed 8-bit game design. At least we have the Disney Afternoon Collection and, if all else fails (or, like me, you're stuck in a classroom for two hours after your students finish taking a state test), you've got emulators.
Like the previous game, the visuals are bright and colorful, and the music is absolutely delightful. At no point does the soundtrack begin to sound repetitive, and at no point do the visuals grow disappointing or dull. The bosses are straightforward in design but still offer a good challenge, and they always feel fair. 8-bit bosses that never cross into feeling cheap aren't always common, so it's nice to see that DuckTales 2's bosses were so well designed in that regard.
DuckTales 2 is a great example of a licensed platformer done right. This was Capcom on their A game. This was Disney before every game using one of their licenses was straight trash. Unfortunately few people will have the privilege of owning the original NES cartridge (I doubt I ever will), but however you're able to play, fans of 8-bit games owe it to themselves to play DuckTales 2. It's not perfect, but it's about as close as a licensed game can get.
My Rating - 4 Neps
I'm a teacher.
And I like to play video games. I like to collect video games. I like to talk about video games, and I like to write about video games. During the day, I teach high school history; during the night, I spend my spare time gaming. Then I write about it.