It's nearly two years since its predecessor "James Pond" first arrived (back in 1990) initially on the Amiga computers, scoring a massive 9 out of 10 in all major video-game magazines of the time. The story begins with Dr Maybe (!) who's holding a toy factory to ransom in the North Pole (Santa's toy-factory actually), intent on causing a present-less Christmas for everyone! The nasty piece of work has been manufacturing a range of lethal playthings in an attempt to take his revenge from the previous game story. He'll succeed too, unless James (our little fish-Bond hero) steps in!
Equipped with a high-tech robot suit, it enables him to expand his torso to preposterous lengths of height! This comes in extremely handy during gameplay as very often you have to reach ledges and grip on with your ... fishy fingers!
Find loads of power-ups too. Hostile creatures lurk in these levels, and they come in many forms. There are no weapons in the game, so James must jump on them to defeat them. The whole action takes place in rooms fully decorated with huge toys, candies etc. Ok, the action is stereotypical platform mayhem and basically you've got to run, jump, squash, stretch (!) and generally splash your fins around, defeating baddies and killing massive mothers every two stages or so, in a joyful and way colorful wrap!
The graphics are pretty good for the MS-DOS version, colorful while the action is fast and smooth, running in VGA mode only. The game visuals are comparable to the Amiga (OCS) version though, the Amiga version feels faster and more responsive at times. Although the PC version offers some more graphical touches at the backgrounds, those happens to be frustrating to the eye rather than helpful during gameplay I believe.
Note that the Amiga AGA version is way better than any other 16bit releases, as it uses advanced color techniques, more detail and even faster gameplay!
The sound is good, taking advance of the Sound Blaster sound cards series here, including the original in-game tunes as well as the funny sampled SFX (but of lower quality compared to the Amiga).
Note that, the MS-DOS version looks and sounds better than the Atari ST version (even to the enhanced STE version) as expected due to the ST lower color palette and sound generator capabilities at that time. Eitherway all 16bit home-computer (and console) versions offer great visuals, catchy sounds and fun to play with!