Visually, Super Phantom Cat 2 follows in the footsteps of the original. The game features a somewhat blocky, 2D world that is bright and colorful. The game gives off an old-school, retro aesthetic that reminds me of Super Mario Bros., which is not a bad thing — I love nostalgia.
The protagonist, Ari, along with all of the other cats and other critters, have unique and distinctive appearances that are endearing and hard to resist. The color palette is eye-catching, as it has a fantastic mix of soft pastels, vibrant bolds, and even dark shades to represent night and darkness. The game runs smoothly on my iPhone 7, so the animation is fluid. The game has a quirky and whimsical soundtrack, with lovable sound effects. Overall, Veewo has done another excellent job with this sequel in terms of visual and audio design.
Like the original game, as well as many other platformers, the game is level-based. This means players go through each chapter and stage in chronological order before they're able to move on to the next area. The goal in each stage is to make your way to the portal at the end, but there's many things that get in the way before that happens. You'll encounter many different enemies, obstacles, treasure chests with prizes, and many other hidden secrets of the Phantom World. Fortunately, Ari gains access to some super awesome magical phantom powers on his journey, which help him achieve the impossible.
The controls in Super Phantom Cat 2 are simple and intuitive. In the bottom left corner are your buttons for horizontal directional movement. The bottom right corner has your button for jumping — tap-and-hold on it to do longer jumps. As you come across Phantom Powers in levels, you'll get another button adjacent to the jump. This lets you activate those powers, which include growing vines for climbing, turning unbreakable bricks into crushable blue blocks, jumping higher, freezing enemies, turning invisible, and more.
If you've ever played platformer games before, then you'll know that secret rooms could be anywhere. It's recommended to hug all of the walls if you can, because you never know what you'll find! Plus, you earn "Discovery" points if you find secrets, and there's plenty to find on each stage.
On each stage, players can earn up to three stars: one for completing it, another for finding the star, and one more for opening a chest. The first two are completely manageable if you take the time to explore thoroughly, but the last one can be a bit tricky. Some chests are free to open, but others may require keys, which you buy with the premium currency. They give you some freebies in the beginning, but after that, you're on your own.
As you complete stages, you gain experience points. Leveling up gives you access to new buildings that you can build at your base, such as locksmiths for keys, a brewery for elixirs (let you continue if you run out of hearts and die), and more. To create these items, you have to spend some gold coins and also wait for a timer, which can be annoying. If you're impatient, you can spend blue gems to speed it up.
Since Super Phantom Cat 2 is a free game, it has an energy system and occasional ads. This is disappointing, considering the fact that the original game was premium, allowing you to play as much as you want. During my time with the game so far, I have yet to encounter an ad, though, so at least it's non-intrusive.
While players start off with Ari, there are other heroes that you can play as later on. To unlock new playable characters, you must collect the necessary amount of hero fragments (found in chests), or reach certain points in the game. While most of the heroes are merely cosmetic, some of them (like Alpha), have special abilities, like getting hero fragments each time you play.
To add to the game's high replay value, there are also quests that can be completed for even more rewards. These are accessed in the "Quests" tab, and they have various objectives to complete. If you fail to do the objective, then it's game over and you'll need to try again. These keep things fresh and interesting, so if you want a break from the regular levels, the Quests provide even more challenge.