Despite several attempts by game developers to prove otherwise, the PlayStation controller doesn't do well in place of a mouse. That, combined with the PlayStation hardware's limitations, may be why such games as Broken Sword II are not commonplace on Sony's machine. Even though point-and-click adventure games have been around for years on the PC, the PlayStation has been fairly devoid of them. And while the original Broken Sword was held back by its difficult interface and almost unbearable loading times, the sequel makes point-and-click adventures seem almost doable on the PlayStation. But though the loading times have been trimmed and the interface has been fixed, it's still the PlayStation's limitations, not the compelling storyline or the game's quirky sense of humor, that keep Broken Sword from achieving its potential. Once again you're walking in the shoes of George Stobbard, the jack-of-all-trades American who saved the world in the first Broken Sword game. Nico, Stobbard's prissy French girlfriend, has been kidnapped, and it's up to you to help him escape from a burning house and track down the girl's abductors. But more importantly, you must figure out exactly what's going on. Indeed, this story is about more than just girlfriends and poisonous spiders - you'll run into CIA agents, cocaine lords, power-hungry dictators, mysterious scientists, Mayan artifacts, fallen priests, powerful shamans, and other oddball characters who are all extremely good at muddling the plot. Like all good mysteries, once you think you've got a good handle on exactly what's going on, the game yanks your theories out from under you and tosses you back to square one. Are you tracking down a cocaine empire in the hopes of turning it into the authorities, or are you trying to stop a maniacal Mayan priest from resurrecting the god of chaos and evil from his spiritual prison? Whatever your goal, you'll do plenty of traveling. The game starts in Paris, moves around France a bit, then it's off to Mexico, the Caribbean, London, and back again. Not only does this variety give you a great change of scenery every few hours, but it also lets the game introduce distinctly different characters. Instead of spending all your in-game time as Stobbard, there are parts of the game where you assume the role of Nico herself. This makes the game more interesting, as Nico has an entirely different way of dealing with people and situations. Because of her striking cartoony curves, men are more apt to help Nico, but she has a more difficult time doing physical tasks. Stobbard, however, hasn't changed a whole lot since he had his fun in the original Broken Sword. He's still a quirky, cynical bastard with an aspiring MacGyver-like talent that lets him do remarkable things with everyday items. While there are tons of items and puzzles in Broken Sword II, you won't find yourself stuck in any scenario for any lengthy amount of time. If you can't figure something out, it usually means you must go talk to everyone you've met recently all over again, as they'll offer new bits of information they conveniently forgot before. This makes the gameplay almost tedious, because you spend plenty of time listening to people ramble and significantly less time figuring out how to do things such as start a fire with a bank statement and stone figure. Still, there are plenty of creative things to do with all the common items you stumble across in the game, and people looking for at least one or two challenging puzzles will find them. Like its predecessor, the graphics in Broken Sword II are all hand drawn. The graphical style and attention to detail gives Broken Sword II a feel similar to Don Bluth's laser-disc games like Dragon's Lair and Space Ace.