Golazo! 2 is an arcade football game by Argentinian indie developers and publishers Purple Tree. It is a follow-up to the well-received 2020 Golazo! Soccer League.
Back to the 90’s Football Era!
While there are many football games on the market, Golazo! 2 is an anything-goes version of the beautiful game where fouls and offsides do not exist. Created in Unity and available at around £11 on Steam, how would this indie title fair?
Right from the (kick) off, there is something very arcade-like with Golazo! 2. Remember the good old days when you were ordering some takeout, and while you were waiting for your order to be ready there would be some form of coin-op arcade machine in the corner? Well, Golazo! 2 would fit right in there.
Instantly transported back to the mid-90s, (the best decade), this simple no-nonsense game has a lot to offer.
With the options of playing a Quick Match, Street Tour, Tournaments and a World League, I must say that I was not expecting so many modes for a relatively small game. Ok, I know, my first footy games were Sensible Soccer and Kick Off 2 on the ST, however, I am so used to most games being a few GB at least when on PC! Golazo! 2 is a little over 500Mb in comparison.
Quick Match allows you to play a friendly either on a grass pitch or contained in a street match. It is worth noting that although you can play against AI, you can also play up to 4 players locally, each picking what side to play on.
Street Tour is as it sounds. A tour mode that starts in Japan and has you play a mini-tournament against other teams in order to unlock the next city in another country. At the time of writing, there were 5 countries to visit. Before each match you can change your formation and then it’s time to see how many goals you can score.
The Tournaments mode is in effect a selection of knockout cups ranging from the Euros, Americas, Asia and International whereby the relevant National teams battle in a grass-pitched-based knockout tournament to win the Cup. The length of the tournament is based on the number of teams available for that continent with the International Cup being the World Cup, complete with group stages.
Finally, there is the World League where you can choose the duration of the season. This can range from an 8-team league to a whopping 52-team league! There is the option to either play the match or simulate the match. It is worth mentioning that whichever tournament, tour or league that you play in has its own save slot, with 3 available slots per event.
When it comes down to actually playing Golazo! 2, grass pitch sees a 6 vs 6 match on a medium size play area. A controller or keyboard can be used. The controls are simple with the standard pass, thru-ball, lob and shoot as well as run and select a player. When defending you can perform standing tackles (pushes) as well as unleash your inner Vinny Jones with some crunching slide tackles. The game is fairly brutal but not gory, opting for more arcade-style thrills and play to keep the momentum going. When you score you are rewarded with a replay that shows your stunning goal from a different angle including overhead or even from pitch level. It was a great touch. I did get to play through a penalty shoot-out in one of the matches. There was no target or giveaway to where you were going to shoot, nor over complicated controls. Just aim and shoot or aim and save!
The movement of the characters reminded me of the old footy arcade games such as Striker, they are relatively smooth, however, the ball sticks to them all the time the player is in possession. I had immense fun working my way quickly up the pitch only to think I was playing Fifa and press the wrong button to shoot.
Although there is not a full commentary, Golazo! 2 does have a narrator that shouts out the team name and score as well as “shoot”, “centre” and “goal kick!” amongst other short catchphrases. It really brought the arcade football game to life, and once more I regressed into a young teen wearing Turtle Power clothing.
The 4 vs 4 street matches are equally as fun, with the concrete pitch fully enclosed with walls to allow the game to be played even faster than the grass version. Instead of football kits, the teams are made up of players wearing a variety of urban outfits such as hoodies and tracksuits along with some crazy hairstyles and colours. The controls are the same, nice and simple, but at the same time quick paced and ultimately a fun experience.
Graphics & Audio
From the intro, there is something very Konami about the graphics. The colours and cel shading work very well creating the arcade vibe, while the voice shouting out “Golazo!…..2” just attracts my attention similar to an old Japanese gaming cabinet heckling to be played with.
The footballers are well drawn with comical short bodies and large stocky legs, with the artwork carried on throughout the game fluidly. I particularly liked the neon colours used in the Street Tour, highlighting the goalposts in bright red as well as bright hairstyles and clothing set against the black silhouette of the crowd.
The music is a number of charged electronic pieces with a driving bassline, keyboards, guitars and progressive dance drum beats. A reminder of the game title is rapped every now and then as the distinct “Go, Go, Gol, Golazo!” rings out. For me, I really enjoyed the callouts during the match along with the crowd cheers as you try and score that crucial goal against your opponents.
Matches can be made as easy or as hard as you like, as can the time they last. There are quite a few game modes to conquer and the ability to be able to play locally with your friends and family, both on the same team and against, means that you can have a really fun session together.
Maybe it is my age, but Golazo! 2 really struck a nerve with me. A good one that is. Its simple but fun nature means it is very easy to pick up and play. The arcade feel somehow hits my nostalgic tastebuds while the constant callouts seemed to add more to the overall experience rather than annoy me. I must say I am impressed with how Golazo! 2 played and it scores a Thumb Culture Gold Award for me!
Disclaimer: A code was received in order to write this review.