Two Point Campus
August 9th, 2022
PC, PlayStation 5 & 4, Xbox Series S/X & Xbox One, Nintendo Switch
Two Point Studios
Two Point Studios is an interesting studio; you can’t fault it for knowing what it wants to do. With Bullfrog and Lionhead Studios alums, and the first title being Two Point Hospital – the spiritual successor to Theme Hospital – it was clear that this is a studio that is a fan of and wants to create fun simulation titles. Appealing and fun simulation games are something they’re looking to continue, and I would argue they are succeeding with the new release of Two Point Campus.
Now, I’ve spoiled my verdict of Two Point Campus right there, if the title didn’t already give it away, but the question is why I feel like that. Let’s go on a journey, but isn’t education always a journey?
When it comes to education, my experience was a mixed one. I did well when I set myself to task, but when I decided I would be better off going to the pub instead of going to lessons, I can’t say I did great in that particular course. Maybe I would have been even more interested in education if my college featured monumental statues, car tables, or double beds for spending time with members of the opposite sex. Granted, I would have paid far more attention were I learning to be a knight, if I were in wizarding school, or learning to be the next Bames Jond.
Much like Two Point Hospital, Two Point Campus is the on-the-nose comedic management simulation version. This game is no Theme University; this is all about comedy. That’s a lie; it’s not all about comedy; it’s also about excellent management simulation. The advantage is that the levels ease you into the progression. You’ll start by building a science-focused university. Move into the culinary arts later on, in the second location. Onwards and upwards from there.
Eventually, it culminates in very challenging scenarios like the Hogwarts remake, Spiffinmoore. In every scenario, you get ever-more things to manage and an increasing list of issues to try to fix. It starts with something as simple as giving your faculty and students somewhere to have a little downtime, somewhere to sleep, and some toilets and showers. Eventually, you’re combatting curses, natural disasters, and more. All with the power of your janitorial staff and a few others – and don’t forget to put down sanitation stations.
If there’s any problem, you often start in the same situation on every stage of Two Point Campus. You have a pot of money, a blank slate, or a building that should have been a blank slate. Pre-built things are always in the same vein as every simulation game, arguably some of the most inefficiently placed things ever known to man. It’s no wonder you’re taking over the university. Before starting the first term, you’ll need to set up the lesson room, the lecture theatre, the dorm, the shower room, and the toilets.
Time. Time is the core difference between this and Two Point Hospital. In Two Point Hospital, you had substantial time constraints. You needed to get the patients in to see the doctor and get them into treatment. If you didn’t, they would die in the hallways. Here, you have the luxury (mostly) of slow development. Moving from semester to semester, adding more classes as time passes, you can organically grow your university.
This is essential as the game introduces more things, and student requests start to grow exponentially. These requests can be anything from placing down a feature that helps improve romance – or maybe a few special beds – to whole new rooms. As you meet these requests and improve happiness, you’re rewarded with Kudosh, something you should remember from Two Point Hospital. that allows you to unlock new ornaments, rooms, and more. It’s a strange one because to earn Kudosh; you inevitably need to spend it. The only problem early on is that it’s achingly slow to gain.
In addition to Kudosh, you need to focus on the real dosh. As with any management sim, you’ll find your bank balance hard-pressed through some tough decisions. Even when you think you’re doing well, you’re only a big purchase, or a bad semester, away from near ruination. As with other simulation games, you’ve got many graphs and charts to contend with and many metrics you’re expected to meet; the only problem is that these are somewhat buried. Two Point Campus sometimes tries to show these, but it’s not the most transparent or navigable title.
Still, this is within the template of the game. Like Two Point Hospital before it, Campus is designed to be approachable. The comedic tone set in text and audio, the exaggerated animations, the curses, classes, and more. Two Point Campus can be a reasonably deep simulation title, but first and foremost, it wants to be easy to play and not overly challenging. That’s the impression I get.
You know what? That’s not a bad thing. It works; I found myself laughing at Two Point Campus and enjoying my time with it. The repeated jokes can sometimes get a little old and stale, and you desperately need to like jokes that make you cringe but still laugh simultaneously. This is potentially the only true pitfall of the game, but Two Point Studios knew the strong reception for Two Point Hospital and have carried it on here, simply adapting the setting as required.
Honestly, I can’t think of much to say about Two Point Campus. I like it, and I’ve had fun with it. It’s not the most detailed simulation game out there, but it has no intentions of trying to be that. At the same time, there’s enough to keep you on your toes, just needing to be less opaque with the figures – and ensuring the front display matches precisely to the key statistics when you start digging in.
Do I recommend Two Point Campus? I do. There are certainly worse education systems; look at the US and UK right now, and who hasn’t wanted to go to Knight School or Not-Hogwarts?
PC version reviewed. Copy provided by the publisher.
Products mentioned in this post
Two Point Campus follows the track laid by Two Point Hospital, keeping the same comedic look and tone, the same humour in its courses and curses. Like their first title, this combines strong simulation and management mechanics with accessibility that works well with the aforementioned tone and aesthetic. Two Point Studios know their work, and they’re no doubt leading the class in more ways than one.
- Charming title, with a good amount of humour.
- A good balance of simulation and accessibility makes it a great introduction to management simulation titles.
- Still manages to be accessible even with several factors to manage, including character happiness.
- A steady introduction of features can keep the campaign interesting, but sets you up perfectly for the sandbox mode.
- Improvement of tools and options set it a step above Two Point Hospital and give it more functionality.
- Takes far too long for you to generate Kudosh and unlock further items early in the game.
- There’s a lot of repetition in starting a new campus, which feels like it could be skipped.
- On rare occasions, the in-game UI may not display full – or accurate – figures.
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