FREE copy of Photoshoot when you spend £50+ with code: FREEGAMEFRIDAY

Menu

A mystery box filled with miniatures to enhance your RPG campaigns. All official miniatures and for a bargain price!

Buy Miniatures Box »

Not sure what game to buy next? Buy a premium mystery box for two to four great games to add to your collection!

Buy Premium Box »
Subscribe Now »

If you’re only interested in receiving the newest games this is the box for you; guaranteeing only the latest games!

Buy New Releases Box »
Subscribe Now »

Looking for the best bang for your buck? Purchase a mega box to receive at least 4 great games. You won’t find value like this anywhere else!

Buy Mega Box »
Subscribe Now »

Buy 3, get 3% off - use code ZATU3·Buy 5, get 5% off - use code ZATU5

Buy The Game

Awards

Rating

  • Artwork
  • Complexity
  • Replayability
  • Player Interaction
  • Component Quality

You Might Like

  • The “point and click” feel
  • Puzzle of combining certain items
  • Very helpful hint system

Might Not Like

  • No branching story
  • Single shot
  • Probably not the best at higher player count.
  • The “hacking” aspect can get repetitive
Find out more about our blog & how to become a member of the blogging team by clicking here

Cantaloop Book 2 Review

Cantaloop Book 2

Cantaloop Book 2 - A Hack of a Plan is a one to four player cooperative, role playing, deduction game designed by Friedemann Findeisen and Grzegorz Kobiela and published by Lookout Games. Book 2 carries on from Cantaloop Book 1 - Breaking into Prison - you can read Zatu’s/my thoughts here.

Back in the day, when I was a kid, computer games consisted heavily of point and click adventure games. Games like Grim Fandango, Day of the Tentacle and various iterations of Monkey Island. It first started in 1976 (before I was born I may add) and still continues to some extent today (Monkey Island is coming back). They were often filled with fantastic humour and combinations of weird items. You went around various scenes, collecting items, combining items and trying to puzzle your way through the game.

Cantaloop, is in essence, the analogue adaptation of its digital counterparts. The game comes with a big book of 11 different locations with various characters and puzzles to solve. Using a very unique and innovative card/numbering system you can combine items and use various items at the locations. The combination of the characters on the cards you are using or at the locations will give you a code to look up which will give you some dialogue text. This may instruct you to go to another piece of dialogue or give you a code to cross off (i.e. A1, B3, F8 etc). You will collect these codes as you go along and new dialogue options and text entries will open up as you progress.

Cantaloop Book 2, as the name suggests, is the second in a trilogy of books following the adventures of Oz "Hook" Carpenter who has just returned from exile and is planning a big heist on Cantaloop island. Follow his antics as you try to bring your crew together for a big heist to get revenge on the person who forced you to flee in the beginning.

Cantaloop Book 2: Final Thoughts

I loved point and click adventure games as a kid. I have some very fond memories of puzzling my way through these games, combining seemingly innocent items to create something to aid in my adventures. I loved the sense of satisfaction when you suddenly find a winning combination to get past a certain area/section or puzzle.

Cantaloop has all the elements of these old school point and click adventures; finding and combining items, searching new locations, unlocking new dialogue options and it works very well. If you enjoy the digital versions I think you would enjoy Cantaloop. It also goes without saying that if you enjoyed the first book you are going to probably like this one as well.

The mechanisms behind the game are solid. All locations and items will have a two character alphanumeric code and an arrow. When you combine two items you get a code (i.e. z3f2). If this code is generated at a location you look up the corresponding code at that location. If it is two items in your "inventory" then you look it up in a separate book. The dialogue is obscured and can only be read with a red filter (provided with the game). The dialogue text is branching and depending on what other codes you may have unlocked previously may lead you to different text to read.

There is also a very good hint system if you get stuck that offers layered solutions; from a hint to a direct clue. As with book one, I found I did use the hint system a few times but not often.

For the most part though the game flowed well. Book two felt like it had a few obscure combinations that I didn’t get and it was for these parts that I used the help section for. I am not going to give away spoilers here as part of the fun is discovering the combinations for yourself. But the story did continue from where book one left off. So you, ideally, need to play the first book before picking this one up. There was a big section around “hacking” (which I will say no more about the actual mechanism) that I was not a big fan of. It was fun the first few times but got repetitive after a while. It wasn’t a major issue for me and it can be easily skipped without damaging the gameplay.

If you like the puzzle of figuring out how to combine items to overcome situations and obstacles then Cantaloop has this in spades.

Overall, I really enjoyed Cantaloop Book 2. I think I preferred Book 1 more, but that is not to say that Book 2 is bad. It is still very good fun and I highly recommend. The length for this one felt better but that maybe because my expectations were managed by the first one. As with the first Book I did play this as a pure solo game and I am not sure I would want to play it any higher than two players. I see no reason to play this as a four player game. It has the option to just pack it away and save your game and carry on at any point which I really enjoyed.

Zatu Score

Rating

  • Artwork
  • Complexity
  • Replayability
  • Player Interaction
  • Component Quality

You might like

  • The point and click feel
  • Puzzle of combining certain items
  • Very helpful hint system

Might not like

  • No branching story
  • Single shot
  • Probably not the best at higher player count.
  • The hacking aspect can get repetitive

Zatu Blog

Find out more about our blog & how to become a member of the blogging team by clicking here

Join us today to receive exclusive discounts, get your hands on all the new releases and much more!