I do like me a Gunvolt. Luminous Avenger iX plays a little differently, being a spin-off, and this sequel continues that way, but the Mega Man-ish roots are still there and as platform shooters go, the series is probably my favourite.
iX 2 involves yer boy Copen and some of his chums getting sucked into a parallel dimension where humans have died out and robots guard a huge tower. For story based reasons, the mission is to scale this tower (which helpfully has different biomes on each floor, in order to facilitate the genre tropes of ice/fire/jungle/etc. worlds), beat the bosses, nick their weapons (each of which is a weakness for another boss), and somehow return home.
Or, you ignore all that and have fun jumping and shooting and using loads of bizarre weapons.
Unlike all the other Gunvolt and Gunvolt-adjacent games, this one was a total breeze. Normally, the bosses at least would require many, many attempts, but here I stormed through the entire game with nary a death, and although the final boss took an age to defeat (perhaps I didn’t find the right weapon to beast it), it wasn’t difficult. Most of this was probably down to the addition of a power that lets you heal whenever you want, as often as you want, which is unlocked from the start. I suspect using this may lower your score, but I’m not score-attacking the game so I used it with impunity. Which, actually, wasn’t even all that often.
Luminous Avenger iX 2 is probably a weaker game than iX 1 in many ways – easier, shorter, less interesting story, forgettable bosses, and so on, but it’s still tremendous fun.