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Lex the Bookworm is eating his breakfast, a bowl of letters, when suddenly a troubled Mother Goose appears, running and screaming for help while being chased by the Big Bad Wolf. Lex starts to run after these characters until the trio falls inside an open book, starting an adventure on a fantasy landscape.

Bookworm Adventures Volume 2, like its predecessor, is a spelling game with light RPG elements. The player assumes the role of Lex fighting several characters taken from fables and folklore, with the two sides taking turns. The game is divided in chapters, each based on a poem or fairy tale story with a final boss character. After defeating the boss, Lex receives one of the treasures. These artifacts give special powers to fight the battles, increasing the attack power and helping in other ways. Lex can carry up to three treasures at the same time, and they can be selected along with a companion on a separate screen between chapters. These companions are mythic characters that take up one of the treasure slots and join Lex during the battle, giving potions, attacking the enemy and increasing positive statistics.

The main game screen shows Lex at the left side with his health and level up meters, with the space beneath him listing all the equipped treasures and available potions. The enemy sits at the other side also with a health bar, but with attacks, immunities and weaknesses listed below. A 4x4 grid of letters is positioned at the center of the bottom interface, and the objective is to create the longest word possible with it to charge Lex attacks. The letters don't have to be connected and can be selected from anywhere, and their attack power can be optionally indicated by small bronze, silver and gold circles in their lower right-hand corners. Words have to be three-letter long at least, and Lex interjections like "Very Good" and "Excellent" indicate how powerful they are.

Each word created and submitted results in Lex launching an attack, damaging the foe by removing some hearts from the enemy's health bar. The longer the word, the more effective is the assault. After the battle is won, Lex status is reset and he moves on to the next fight. After defeating each enemy, some experience points are added to the level up meter, until it is maxed out increasing one of Lex's statistics like his attack power and defense.

After submitting a complex word, one of the tiles becomes a random gem with special powers. They have specific characteristics related to their jewel type, and start to take effect after being used on a word. The purple amethyst poisons the enemy for two turns and increases damage by 15%. The green emerald adds two hearts to Lex's health bar and 20% damage to the word. The blue sapphire freezes the enemy for one turn, and makes attacks 25% more effective. The orange garnet weakens the enemy attack for two turns and increases damage by 30%. The red ruby burns the enemy for three turns, adding 35% damage. The pink crystal removes any effects from Lex and the grid, protecting him for one turn and making the attacks 50% more powerful. The white diamond fills Lex's health bar, gives one of each potion and makes the attack 100% more powerful. Their effects are accumulative, with several statistics afflicting the enemy at the same time.

The enemy is killed after all his energy is finally depleted, but it is possible to make a final overkill attack and win some bonus gems for the next battle. Enemy attacks can add some bad tiles to the grid, with several types of ailments. Smashed tiles don't do any damage to the enemy, but they return to normal after some turns. Locked tiles can't be used until their counters reach zero after some rounds. Plagued tiles can be used but are ineffective, and their infection can spread to other tiles if they are not removed from the game. Warped tiles cause no damage and change letters after each turn. Cursed tiles hurt Lex when used in a word. Fire tiles cause no damage to the foe, destroying the other tiles below them until they finally burn all the grid. Some enemy attacks lock the whole grid and add some negative statistics to Lex. He can be frozen or stunned, losing one turn, and petrified losing two turns. Effects like poisoning, bleeding and burning keep hurting Lex for several rounds. The power down effect reduces Lex's attack power, and the stasis effect disables his companion and treasures.

There are three potions lined up under Lex, to be used to clear or revert negative effects. The health potion adds some hearts to restore the energy meter. The power-up potion makes the attack more effective. The purify potion removes lingering effects on Lex and the grid tiles. Extra potions and gem tiles are earned by playing one of the word construction mini-games, that can be accessed occasionally between chapters. After completing the main Adventure Mode, the Arena Mode is unlocked, where Lex must face and defeat all the bosses from the previous mode, with battles based on time instead of turns. The mini-games encountered can be accessed and played later for points at the main menu.


Bookworm Adventures Volume 2 Windows The first treasure: Lex's breakfast
Bookworm Adventures Volume 2 Windows Roasted chicken
Bookworm Adventures Volume 2 Windows Brickhouse little piggy
Bookworm Adventures Volume 2 Windows Chicken

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Critic Reviews

GameZebo Jul 31, 2009 4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars 90
Destructoid Aug 05, 2009 9 out of 10 90
PC Games (Germany) Aug 21, 2009 87 out of 100 87
Game Revolution Jul 31, 2009 B+ 83
IGN Jul 30, 2009 8.3 out of 10 83
Eurogamer.net (UK) Jul 30, 2009 8 out of 10 80
Girl Gamers UK Sep 04, 2009 7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars 70
Thunderbolt Games Sep 03, 2009 6 out of 10 60
Out Of Eight Aug 12, 2009 4 out of 8 50
411mania.com Aug 14, 2009 Unscored Unscored


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Macs Black (80183) added Bookworm Adventures Volume 2 (Windows) on Aug 12, 2009