My mom bought my brother and I both games when we were growing up. We got them at the same time, so I never particularly favored one over the other, I liked them both. The games just seemed way too long for a 12 year old's attention span though, I look at them as only games that hardcore gamers would ever beat. I'll explain my opinion on both of them:
Toe Jam & Earl:
I really thought this game had a unique concept. Overhead view, pick up random presents, run away from monsters (or kill them if you're lucky!) and collect pieces of ship. People tell me when you select "random world" the game can end as soon as you collect all 10 pieces of the ship, whether it be level 15 or level 25, but I swear all the times I beat this game it always ended at level 25, random or not. Is it just a coincidence?
If you know how to play this game, it's pretty easy. Any newcomer will have to go through a trial and error basis and probably get multiple gameovers before they succeed. There is one present in particular that dictates how well you'll do, and you can only identify it one way. The randomizer present will make or break you. If you can manage to have that identified by the carrot dude, your chances of losing are pretty slim. You can open a Total Bummer present and still win. As long as you steer clear of Randomizer, you'll be good. My personal favorite present is the Icarus Wings, you can escape pretty much any enemy with them, and you can even fly through the pits.
One super fucking annoying enemy is the post office box. Oh god, if you happen to come across that thing, say goodbye if you don't have any decent presents. When I see him coming towards me, I just suicide jump off the level. I have seen that shithead drain my life in seconds because there's no recovery time after you get hit; he just keeps raping you into oblivion. Another enemy that really pissed me off was the Ice Cream Truck. You know you're in trouble when you hear that obnoxious HONK HONK sound....
I beat the game with Toe Jam, because he seemed like the more logical choice. Earl has more bulk, but he's also considerably slow, not being able to escape most enemies. He's probably hard mode.
Toe Jam & Earl 2: Panic on Funkotron:
One thing I could never understand is all the negative repetition this game gained. It's almost as bad as SOR3's repetition...and I always asked myself why? Well, after playing through the game for the first time a few minutes ago, I have come to the conclusion that the game is way too fucking long. I wrote down passwords, I collected all of Lamont's stuff, I explored everything and it took me way longer than any other Genesis game I've played, except for the games that actually...you know, SAVE. Besides that, I don't have much else to complain about, except how boring it was towards the end. I always enjoyed the company of Earl's friends like Sharla, Ottis, Chester/Lester, etc. and I always followed their directions. The levels were pretty well designed except for the water mazes (hate those) and the graphics are beautiful.
The earthlings I really hate are the flying duck (whatever that thing is?), and of course, that douchebag in the box. God, do I hate him. The photographers can sod off, too.
I beat this game as Earl, just to do something different from the first game.
My overall favorite?
Ten years ago I would have said the second game, but after playing through both of them recently, I'd say definitely the first one. The second one is dragged out, boring, and I doubt I'll ever try to beat it again. I still like it, just not as much anymore.
Has anyone here played TJ&E for the XBox? I don't own an Xbox or I'd definitely give it a try. I've read mixed reviews on the game, but I'm wondering if Retro ever played it?