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Critic Reviews

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Game Vortex (Jun, 2008)
While publishers haven't been raking in money from House and Grey's Anatomy themed Trauma Center variants, the lack of clones has the happy side-effect of keeping the pool from becoming diluted and makes releases like Trauma Center 2 that much more satisfying. Although it doesn't introduce too many changes, Trauma Center 2 improves the original's shortcomings and helps the series retain its place as one of the more unique experiences on the DS.
Cheat Code Central (Jul, 2008)
The last "problem" with Under the Knife 2 is it really doesn't do much new with the series. Sure, there are plenty of new operations, but as I've stressed throughout this review, the core gameplay remains essentially unchanged. Many people aren't going to see this as a problem; after all, it's been several years since we first got a Trauma Center title on the DS, and the game is so addictive and exciting that it doesn't really need to be new to be fun. Overall, despite some really nit-picky problems, Trauma Center: Under the Knife 2 is a fun, frantic game that's worth trying. Regardless of what type of gamer you are, you owe it to yourself to try out the madness that is Trauma Center. Once you start playing, you'll be a hooked.
Game Shark (Jul 30, 2008)
Simulation games are a dime-a-dozen on Nintendo’s handheld. None of them have been able to match the series’ masterful blend of storytelling, engrossing gameplay, and touchscreen interaction. Trauma Center was one of the original sleeper hits for the DS and this is just another step ahead of the pack. Under the Knife 2 is more of the same, but it feels so good to get the scalpel back in hand.
Destructoid (Jul 11, 2008)
For fans of the series, Under The Knife 2 will not disappoint. The game still works as a standalone title, so gamers who have not played the first could still enjoy this installment, although seeing old faces from the first game will of course be less impactful. Engaging gameplay and an excellent story make this a must have title for fans of simulation titles such as the Phoenix Wright series. Overall, I'd recommend it to any DS owner who has a hunger for a wonderful story to go along with addictive gameplay.
HonestGamers (Jul 07, 2008)
Trauma Center has always been a quality series but sometimes technical issues held it back. Here, those are gone and the game is free to live up to its full potential. This is the one you've been waiting for.
Gamer 2.0 (Jul 07, 2008)
If you’re an avid follower of the Trauma Center series, it’s no secret that Under the Knife 2 really could’ve been better if it added a bit more from its Wii entries. While there hasn’t been a lot of evolution, the game boasts a nearly perfect presentation with the same challenging and addictive gameplay that made the original so great. It also is a lot more approachable to newcomers because of its greater variety in difficulty. However way you look at it, Under the Knife 2 is simply another great game that would be an asset to any DS owner with its 12-20 hours of piercing gameplay—depending upon how long you can really handle being under the knife.
GameSpy (Jul 01, 2008)
Players are ranked after each surgery. You can always eek by with sloppy work, but the temptation to replay a mission to get the coveted (and hard-to-achieve) "Senior Surgeon" ranking is pretty strong. And even if you max out every mission on "easy," the other difficulty levels will really test your stylus-work. There's a lot of entertainment here, for both casual or hardcore players.
Purojuegos (2008)
Afortunadamente esos son todos los defectos que posee y como verán son mucho menos que las virtudes, por lo tanto vale mucho la pena para el jugador, sobre todo si ya esta acostumbrado a esta franquicia el cual se vera sorprendido por el avance tanto visual, sonoro y jugable que ha tendido el titulo en la portátil de Nintendo, un juego que al igual que su predecesor aprovecha como pocos las posibilidades de esta gran consola.
GameSpot (Jul 01, 2008)
Under the Knife 2's only flaw is that it feels a bit light on content, offering only 38 operations that take a few minutes each to play through. You won't necessarily complete them all first time, of course, but even allowing for failed attempts and lengthy cutscenes it shouldn't take you more 15 hours or so to beat the game. Finishing the game does grant you access to "confidential" operations, but these are set on extreme difficulty, leaving those who shied away from the hard setting woefully unprepared for the challenges ahead. Even with these bonus operations the game still feels padded, containing entire episodes without operations that amount to little more than lengthy dialogue filler. There's some replay value at least, since the ranking system encourages you to repeat past surgeries to increase your score. All in all, Trauma Center: Under the Knife 2 successfully blends a creative medical theme with bizarre but fun puzzle gameplay to create an addictive treat.
The surprisingly multifaceted story covers everything from political maneuvering to the consequences of hubris and tinkering with the laws of nature. However, the game would benefit from less jibber jabber and a more concise campaign – which could have easily been accomplished if your allies would just remember to wear some freakin’ hazmat suits when going after bioterrorists.
Gamernode (Jul 25, 2008)
For many that won't matter, though, and in this case I'm inclined to agree with them. (Shocking for anyone who knows me-I know.) The fact is Trauma Center 2 may not be one of Atlus' greatest achievements in the narration department, but the amount of tiny tweaks and fixes they made to the core Trauma Center DS gameplay to make it even better is more than enough to give this one life. If you loved Trauma Center, you'll love Trauma Center 2. If you hated Trauma Center because it was too hard or unforgiving, you'll love Trauma Center 2. Hell, if you own a DS you'll love Trauma Center 2. Play this one for fun, and let Atlus' stories remain on the PS2.
GameZone (Jul 01, 2008)
Under the Knife 2 is a great entry to the series, ramping up the challenge level while keeping the whole experience easy to get into for newcomers. If you’re a fan of the Trauma Center series or simply looking for a good starting point, Under the Knife 2 is definitely worth your time.
Trauma Center: Under the Knife 2 is a very addictive and fun game. Its difficulty may turn some gamers off, but those who stick with it and enjoy a challenge are in for a great time. The storyline is interesting and the cast of characters are likable. The surgeries themselves are the star of the show and provide intense and addictive portable gaming. This version does lack any form of multiplayer mode but given that the single player game is so solid it doesn't hurt the game that much. The bottom line is that if you like a challenging game, with tight controls and a solid storyline then you can’t go wrong with Trauma Center: Under the Knife 2.
IGN (Jun 27, 2008)
The point is, this is yet another impressive Trauma Center experience, and by this time most players know exactly what to expect. My job is to tell you if the fourth TC outing is worth your time, and I’ll answer with a resounding “yes” all around. Sure it could have multiplayer, online, and challenge mode – all things found in the latest Wii version – but even without these awesome additions the package is still a fun, challenging, traditional Trauma Center experience. Should Under the Knife 3 miss out on a much-needed facelift next time around, I’d think twice before rushing out to buy it, but it has been two long years since the original hit on DS, and players are (understandably) ready for the game’s return to DS. Buy it, and love it. Just don’t forget to keep your cool with this one. Smashing your DS out of frustration isn’t good bedside manner, Dr. Stiles.
G4 TV: X-Play (Jul, 2008)
The bits of the game that take place in between the surgeries, it has to be said, are less than compelling. The background graphics and character artwork are pretty sharp, and Atlus USA did its best to edit the dialogue into something readable, but this is not a game you're going to play to get wound up in a compelling plot and deep, well-developed characters. As a rule, the cutscenes are several times too dramatic for their own good. That's not such a big problem, though – this is still a game worth playing simply to play it. The controls are intuitive, the operations are well-organized, and now that you can tweak the difficulty to your liking, you can challenge yourself as much as you'd like to. It may still bring back memories of playing Operation when you were a kid, but it's the best game of Operation anyone's ever made.
Worth Playing (Jul 03, 2008)
As far as quality goes, Trauma Center 2 falls somewhere between Trauma Center: Under the Knife and Trauma Center: New Blood. The story line and characters are significantly better than those introduced in the silly New Blood, but the actual levels bring little innovation or excitement. As a whole, Trauma Center 2 is possibly even easier than New Blood, with shorter and easier operations and a number of returning operation types that are made far easier by not being on the Wii. The result is a fun game, but one that still falls short of what made the original Trauma Center so great. If you're looking for most portable doctor action, or simply something less hair-tearingly difficult than the first Trauma Center game, you'll find Trauma Center 2: Under the Knife to be quite worth playing.
Nintendojo (2008)
Despite being a sequel, Trauma Center: Under the Knife 2 is a unique concept that uses DS to its full potential. The difficulty curve is a bit steep and performing an operation can often be as stressful as it is fun, but the sheer excitement of racing against time to save a patient’s life is extremely rewarding. For those craving pulse pounding medical action, Trauma Center: Under the Knife 2 is as close as you can get to being a doctor without years of med school, and it’s a heck of a lot cheaper than a malpractice suit.
GamesRadar (Jul 08, 2008)
Ultimately, Trauma Center: Under the Knife 2 is a visit to the doctor that's more than worth your time. By all means, play this game. It's just that, if the first Trauma Center was a heart transplant, this is more like your fourth visit to the chiropractor: it feels great while you're there, but you can't help wondering if something a little more drastic and different from your previous check-up would improve your life even more.
Under the Knife 2 is a triumphant return for the Trauma Center franchise to the handheld that made it famous in the first place. While it’s a bit too familiar for its own good, and a bunch of features from the previous games are missing, the excellent game design, larger campaign and significantly improved story make this a great title. Atlus is officially 4-for-4 with this unique series.
75 (Jul 03, 2008)
Trauma Center: Under the Knife 2 does what it setout to do. Fans will play this game and drench themselves in animated blood to save the patient. Just don't expect anything new from this installment.
1UP (Jul 01, 2008)
I can't believe I'm saying this, but I'm now actively looking forward to the next Trauma Center. If this isn't an aberration -- if Atlus truly has a firm grip on the controls, difficulty, and pacing now -- then I'm excited to see how the series evolves from here. Under the Knife 2 is an experience all gamers can enjoy, not just stylus savants -- and that's how Trauma Center should've been done from the start.
This franchise has a load of potential. With a few tweaks this could be used to help train real world doctors in important procedures. Operating on people has never been a desire of this reviewer, but there is a definite audience for Trauma Center Under the Knife 2. The pentagram is the biggest concern for Family Friendly Gaming. There are plenty of non-occultic symbols that could have been used instead.
UOL Jogos (Jul 11, 2008)
O primeiro "Trauma Center" foi inovador, e explorou com competência o potencial da tela sensível do Nintendo DS num game cuja temática foi pouco explorada até hoje. Já a continuação optou por aparar as arestas deixadas pelo antecessor, e o resultado é um "Trauma Center" que mantém sua mecânica de jogo instigante, mas que agora pode ser jogado por pessoas de diferentes níveis de experiência em games. O conteúdo tem bom tamanho, mas lamenta-se a falta de pequenas adições, já inventadas para a versão de Wii, que poderiam melhorar ainda mais o produto final. Ainda assim "Trauma Center : Under the Knife 2" é um game que vale muito ser experimentado.
Gamervision (Jul 15, 2008)
Trauma Center: Under the Knife 2 is definitely a solid addition to any DS library. If you didn’t like the previous Trauma Center games, there’s nothing that’s going to draw you in now, but for long-time fans or those who have been mildly curious about the series, Under the Knife 2 is a good choice. If it had just thrown in a few more new tricks, I probably would have given the game much more glowing praise, but unfortunately, it too often relies on past procedures for gameplay. If you can get over this, then definitely give it a try.
NintendoWorldReport (Jun 21, 2008)
Although I've been a fan of Trauma Center from the start and am glad to see Atlus supporting it with sequels, Under the Knife 2 is such a complete rehash that it makes me question the reason for its existence. It's nice to see the series return to its original home on the DS, but nothing has been added to take advantage of the system's unique capabilities except an obnoxious microphone-blowing incident in one mission. Even a modest step forward, such as adding more frames of animation to the character portraits, would have made the game feel fresher and more vibrant. As it is, Under the Knife 2 comes across as a cynical cash-in, a mission pack so lazy that it doesn't even have new missions. Avoid this game and instead check out the far more innovative and satisfying Trauma Center: New Blood on Wii.
GamePro (US) (Jul 17, 2008)
With procedures rarely clearly explained, frustration is quick to take over, and the time limit is just annoying. A normal operation has a time limit of 5 minutes, which doesn't seem so hard until you get stuck randomly away at the screen, trying to figure out what to do next. There are also a few instances where you must perform 3 surgeries back to back within a 10 minute window, only to fail on your last patient because you ran out of time, forcing you have to go back and restart from the very first patient. The controls are the only thing that makes this game truly playable, as they're very forgiving, and feel natural to any DS player allowing you to perform surgeries without many mistakes. Overall, Trauma Center: Under the Knife 2 was very anti-climatic, and one would expect more from a sequel to such a huge hit.