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Lumines II

If you had one of the most hypnotically popular games on the PSP, would you change anything in the sequel or just try to recreate the original gameplay with a couple of added bits? Whatever you answered, the new edition of Lumines aims to do little more than provide the same great time-sucking puzzle game... with a smidgen of new content to maintain freshness (sort of like Sodium Benzoate in Twinkies).

The most notable addition to Lumines II is the animation of the backgrounds, which no longer flash weakly but actually contain fully animated video. They've also added a bunch more musical artists and over 100 new boards with corresponding tunes. One feature that we were very glad to see was the inclusion of an option to start from any board you've already cleared - so no more starting from the beginning board every single time you fire up a game.

A revamped multiplayer mode enables pairs to compete for control of a single board, and a few new puzzle modes have been added as well to round things out. All in all, our brief hands-on with the follow-up to the biggest puzzle success on the PSP proved one thing to us: if it ain't broke, don't fix it... just add some more music and a handful of new play modes and you're golden.



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