Zen Studios released this December 11th three new DLC options for Zen Pinball 2 on the Wii U eShop, being the Venom Table, the South Park Pinball and the old Core Collection.
Here’s my fast review of all those tables:
South Park Pinball
The South Park Pinball is actually a pack comprising two tables: South Park’s Super-Sweet Pinball and South Park: Butter’s Very Own Pinball Game.
Both South Park tables were actually released some time ago, being finally released for the Wii U eShop release of Zen Pinball 2. The main table is South Park’s Super-Sweet Pinball which includes references to the TV show, while the other table, South Park: Butter’s Very Own Pinball Game is mostly focused on the character Butters and his multiple personas.
In order to reach the mission objectives in both tables, the player must do the same action many times until the mission is triggered; it’s quite easy to memorize what you need to do. Actually, both tables have a design easy to learn but they still keep the good difficulty Zen Studios usually brings.
Graphically, the details and references are amazing in both tables; still, the design is pretty saturated with colors. The background music is nice, where the Super-Sweet table’s song is heavily inspired by the show’s theme, but they’re pretty short and because of that, repetitive. Of course there are more tracks depending of the mission, and some of them are pretty nice.
The voice acting is directly from the show’s cast, being a great aspect of the table, but it gets really annoying with time. Maybe it’s fun on a TV show, but it just doesn’t fit on a table.
Of course, the table doesn’t bring the vulgar aspect from the cartoon, such as insults, adult references or strong dark humor. With that said, only the goofy dialogue is included, making it playable for everyone but another reason that makes the voice acting annoying is the lack of variations.
Another Marvel table for the collection, and this time dedicated to one of the most famous enemies in the Spider-Man universe: Venom… Well, actually two enemies since there’s also Carnage.
The table is divided into two parts: the top and the bottom. On the top side, you have access to most of the missions and, on the bottom, the challenges including the multiball and a ball locker that can save you from losing a ball (which is awesome but really hard to access).
The difficulty of the table is really high, and honestly, it was too much for me. Working hard will allow you to win millions of points but you need to hone your skills beforehand. Having fast reflexes will also help, since the ball’s velocity is higher than other tables (or better said, the gravity is stronger).
The graphical aspect like most Zen Pinball’s tables is greatly done, presenting great illustrations, great LCD animations and detailed model work. There’re plenty of tracks on the table; while I’m not a big fan of the main one, I have to say it’s pretty bada**. The voice acting isn’t bad either.
The Core Collection pack has reached the Nintendo Wii U eShop, bringing four different tables: BioLab, Pasha, Rome and Secrets of the Deep, where each table features it own theme and style, doing a great job of giving a good personality to the package.
On Secrets of the Deep, your on a deep sea expedition finding new species; on BioLab you’re in an experimental laboratory cloning different type of monsters; Pasha is taking place in ancient Persia taking inspiration from the “One Thousand and One Nights” and last, the Rome table which is taking the old empire as a main theme.
The gameplay elements are also different on each table, but they manage to be easy to learn and to play. Sadly, explaining those four will take me some time, so I invite you to download the free trial on your console.
The whole package (the four tables) features a great work graphically with plenty of details and a more classic design. It’s also easy to notice they are quite old too (They where released on Pinball FX2, which was originally released as a Xbox 360 Live Arcade exclusive in 2010).
The music used is great, where each table also features its own music stlye: Secrets of the Deep uses songs with a feel of adventure with some touches of marine elements and nice voice acting; the BioLab soundtrack is just amazing with a great use of trumpets and nice voice acting, also plenty of funny situations; Pasha features electronic music based on (I believe) Arabic music where one track is better than the other, but the voice acing can be better; and Rome including which also includes an amazing soundtrack (I can’t tell the genre but the first time you listen it is epic) and also nice voice acting.
The four tables also share a little detail regarding the music: it gets repetitive, something quite normal on Zen Studios’ tables. At least this time I didn’t care about that factor, mostly on Rome and BioLab.
My favorite table from the four is BioLab. Sadly you can’t get each table separately.