The Love Boat: Second Chances
April 14, 2019
This game is no longer available to purchase due to expired licensing.
Gamehouse Original Stories is back with a new Time Management sequel to the hit 80s TV sitcom of the same name. Guide Julie through a variety of exotic locations as she sets sail on the cruise of a lifetime from Los Angeles to Mexico! But what would happen when she has to deal with a complicated love affair of her own? Can she balance her professional and personal responsibilities in The Love Boat: Second Chances?
If you remember, I was quite a big fan of the first The Love Boat game and so, I went into this new installment with high hopes. Unfortunately, I knew almost immediately that this would not live up to its predecessor. The game starts with a long-winded, awkwardly produced interactive story sequence that leads into the first level of the game. As far as the storyline in the rest of the game goes, the game fails to capture the light-hearted, effortless humor that made the first game so great in the first place. Instead, Second Chances revolves around cheesy dialogues and uncharismatic characters.
On the topic of gameplay, The Love Boat: Second Chances plays it very safe. One major difference that differentiates it from other Gamehouse Original Stories’ games is the plethora of mini-games, which do more harm than good for the game. Apart from achieving main objectives and side story-related challenges, the player also needs to complete repetitive mini-games that pop-up every ten seconds or so. Not only are these mini-games tedious and uninspired, they are also incredibly distracting. To make matters worse, the controls in Second Chances are weirdly clunky, in the sense that it is easy to get confused about where exactly to click. I would expect experienced developers like Gamehouse and Boomzap to know better than to release an unpolished game such as this.
Another noticeable flaw of The Love Boat: Second Chances is its inconsistent production. While the overall upbeat aesthetic of the game is effective, the underproduced and pixellated animations are disappointing to say the least. Characters sometimes feel lifeless and so static that deprive the game of any engaging qualities.