Populous II: Trials of the Olympian Gods

aka: Two Tribes: Populous II
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Description official descriptions

Populous II continues the "god game" genre pioneered by Bullfrog's classic Populous. In PII, you're an unproven immortal who must fight your way through an entire pantheon of Greek gods, each with his or her own strategy and attacks, and ultimately enter into a showdown with Zeus himself.

The gameplay mechanics are similar to Populous, but PII features a wider array of spells, digitized sound, and high-resolution graphics to give the spell effects extra punch. Multiplayer is supported via serial link and dial-up.


  • ポピãƒĨナ゚īŧ’ - Japanese spelling

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Credits (Amiga version)

46 People (37 developers, 9 thanks) · View all

Designed By
  • Bullfrog Productions Ltd
Programmed By
Graphics By
Sound Fx
Levels Designed By
Assistant Producer
Product Management
Technical Assistance
Cover Art
Manual Layout
  • Fox
Game Testers
[ full credits ]



Average score: 89% (based on 34 ratings)


Average score: 3.9 out of 5 (based on 73 ratings with 2 reviews)

Much better that its predecessor

The Good
I played both Populous 1 and 2 and I found this second a much better designed game. I loved the tactics you must develop to win a match, this was missing in the first Populous. It's an upgraded version of Populous 1 under all aspects. The background, greek gods, is simply well planned, it's always a pleasure to battle against Mars or Zeus himself!

The Bad
I never heard of people who finished the game... it's an enjoyable game, but it takes too long to end. There are so many missions/levels to take that you'll become pretty tired.

The Bottom Line
A good game, try it, play it a few times and you can get addicted... but I dare you to play it to the end!

DOS · by Emanuele Ravasi (15) · 2000

Prettier but not as much fun as the original

The Good
The graphics - much improved over the original 'Populous'. More colors, more detail, neat 'god power' animations (eg., form a little stormcloud over an unbeliever, then rain lightning down on him/her so shocking their skeleton flashes through just like classic cartoon animation. And then when you've decided they've had enough and quit, if they have indeed had enough all that's left is a little pile of ash...)

Character development - as you win battles against enemy gods, you can increase your godlike powers in specific areas. You're awarded one or more little 'lightning bolt' icons that you can distribute any way you wish to increase the effectiveness of your 'fire' powers, your 'wind' powers, etc. It's much like an RPG character development system.

The Bad
Wildly unbalanced battles - in the original, the battles seemed to get progressively harder but there always seemed to be a way to win (however many times you had to re-fight it until you did). In this sequel, some battles are literally impossible to win. In one battle my lone follower happened to start out on a single small rock in the middle of an ocean. Without enough mana to raise even one piece of flat land, there was absolutely nothing I could do except commit suicide. This is a design flaw, IMHO (didn't anyone actually play this one before including it?!). On the other hand, some battles were ridiculously easy to win - if the 'make wall' power was available, I could frequently get to my opponent's 'attractor' before he did, wall it up so he could never reach it, and so could never create 'hero' characters strong enough to oppose me.

The AI - although the 'gods' were given different names, they all fought pretty much the same way. None of them had any strategy or tactics that were noticeably different from any of the others. So long before the game ended I was simply applying lessons learned earlier to defeat 'new' opponents. It got sort of repetitious.

The endgame battle - I won, but it wasn't so much fun or challenging as simply tedious. It happened that the 'god powers' I needed to win it were precisely those that were my weakest, ie., the ones I hadn't enhanced as much as the others. I wondered if that was deliberate, and if the endgame itself changes to require your weakest powers whatever they happen to be. But I didn't care enough about the answer to actually go through it again and make some other area weaker.

The Bottom Line
Superior to the original in every way except actual gameplay.

DOS · by anton treuenfels (34) · 2001



  • Amiga Joker
    • Issue 02/1993 – Best Strategical of 1992 (Readers' Vote)
  • PC Games (Germany)
    • Issue 01/1993– #2 Best Strategy Game in 1992
  • Power Play
    • Issue 02/1992 – Best Strategy Game in 1991
  • ST Format
    • January 1993 (issue #42) - #8 in '50 finest Atari ST games of all time' list

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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by brickbat.

Windows added by Picard. FM Towns added by Infernos. Amiga added by Johnny "ThunderPeel2001" Walker. Macintosh added by Kabushi. PC-98, Sharp X68000, Genesis, Atari ST, SNES added by Terok Nor.

Additional contributors: Cochonou, Alaka, Patrick Bregger, Jo ST, Kayburt.

Game added June 21st, 2000. Last modified September 21st, 2023.