I remember watching a gameplay video of Toy Story 2 at age 11, really wanting to play it but unable to because of its unavailability in 2009. Now (ten years later), having gotten a PS1 emulator, it was finally the time to give the game a try.
To be clear, I wasn't expecting the game to be great - but simply thought it'd be cool to try out as a fan of the series. Hence, I wasn't disappointed by the flaws of the game, instead simply grateful that I finally got this chance - and I actually had fun playing it.
The game consists of 15 levels, each filled with consistent types of tasks to complete in order to proceed to the next level. These levels are mostly platformers, getting from mission to mission by jumping and swinging through objects. Though the tasks may get repetitive, the varying level designs keep the game fresh with each level.
A major flaw of this game is the camera, awkwardly moving around the character as the player struggles to align the camera to the environment. This is mainly due to lack of camera controls (the ability to move the camera around with joystick). This leads to several other problems which could've been avoided by incorporating the then-recently released Dual Analog controller's analog sticks - allowing players to move camera around freely.
First off, since the game is a platformer, the awkward camera made it all the more difficult to be able to grasp the depth and distance of objects our character would have to jump and latch onto. There are several levels in the game where the players (as the toy-sized Buzz) would have to jump and climb tall structures - such as a building under construction, an elevator shaft, and the baggage area of an airport.
With the lack of adequate checkpoints, it gets annoying when the players fall down due to a misstep and have to climb all the way to the top again and again. Even the playable character becomes unreliable in having to latch or hold on to objects despite several jumps and falls, aggravating the frustration.
In spite of its flaws and frustration-inducing nature, the game is addicting and fun to play - easily a 7/10. The platforming difficulties aren't restraining, as players can proceed to the next level even just by completing 1 out of 5 tasks in a level (with some revisits needed). This structure is great for kids who may not be able to complete certain tasks in a level but still want to move ahead.
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