A Close Call
It must have been a little bit disappointing for Zynga when the game that they purchased for about $180 dollars seemed to fade in and out of popularity like Pokémon Cards, Yoyos, and pretty much every other fad before it. Certain decision-makers responsible for the financial transactions in the company probably came close to losing their jobs over this issue, or at least developed a serious sweating problem around the time of the deal. But with a game that rose vigorously to popularity with the force of the asteroid that has been theoretically blamed in part for the extinction of the dinosaurs, it is obvious that it was doing something right, so how does one proceed to reignite the passion for such a game? Well, according to Zynga, you must give it a complete overhaul whilst allowing the core features of the game to act as the glue that holds it together. New features, better design, and more control over the creative process than ever before, that's Draw Something 2!
Art Thou Not Impressed?
One of the most noticeable changes of the game from the original is the increased focus on the social aspect of the game. The original and its online counterpart possessed some light social aspects because the game was based on connecting with other users in a chat-room like environment, but Draw Something 2 can be described as a mini-hub of artistic creativity for the means of challenging entertainment. The game now has a memory that lets you view other people's previous drawings and also lets you follow other artists in a Twitter-like fashion.
The format of the game remains as it always has, which is to go back and forth between drawing something that best represents the word that the other player has to guess and then guessing the word based on the drawing of the opposing player. You now have some more advanced tools for creating your drawings, however, with pens of varying style gracing your mini toolbox and the ability to draw in a huge range of textures and colours (pixelated pen? Yes please).
Pay to Play
The game retains its freemium model as in the original, though of course you can purchase the game to remove the adverts. In-app purchases are pretty much an inevitability if you take your mobile-based sketch life seriously, though. Most of the cooler features like additional words are obtainable only by paying for them with in-game currency, but what are a few pounds between friends who simply want to test each other's basic sketching skills and laugh at each other's fail of a drawing repeatedly throughout the day?
I most certainly would spring for a few of the extra words and features, since Draw Something 2 is a game that makes it worth your while. It isn't likely to run out of words, since the dictionary is a pretty rich source of these, so the game potentially has a longer shelf-life than some works of fiction such as the bible. Expect vast improvements all round in Draw Something 2, a game that should be the benchmark for other games looking to release sequels that are fully worthwhile for their fan base.