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House Flipper 2 Review

House Flipper 2 takes the most satisfying elements from the first House Flipper game and improves upon them.  With the addition of new features, smoother mechanics, a more streamlined approach to tasks and a new town to explore, the only thing stopping you is your creativity.  Residents keep their homes just as filthy as before and want you to do the work, but they also don’t want you to discover their secrets…  Read on for our House Flipper 2 review!

Gut them and renovate them

At its core, House Flipper 2 has a highly familiar gameplay loop: buy properties, gut them, renovate them, and then sell on for a profit.  The setting sees you in Pinnacove, an adorable little seaside town with plenty of pleasant locals.  There is also a staggering number of utterly horrendous, disgustingly filthy, near-derelict properties in this small town, but that’s kind of the point of the game!

The story is loose at best, with the focus mainly being kept firmly on cleaning, clearing, fixing, updating and selling properties.  However, there are several hidden secrets in some of the houses that you work on.  Things such as abandoned diaries, forgotten photos or even childhood toys all add a touch of realism to your work.

Everybody has secrets

One task sees you tear down and then rebuild what can only be described as a secret wall that separates a portion of the bathroom from the rest of it.  Apart from being used for torture, it isn’t easy to find a “normal” reason for such a requirement.  As such, it makes for interesting gameplay nevertheless.

There is a lot of hidden detail that isn’t always obvious at first glance.  For example, the screenshot above shows what happens when you place a shower cubicle too close to a window sill that juts out from the wall.  The door collides with it, causing it to not open fully.  This can be rectified easily enough, however, either by moving the shower cubicle away from the window sill, adjusting the window sill so that it sits flush with the wall or by moving the window altogether.

Plenty of easter eggs

I also discovered some easter eggs along the way, some of which were unexpected.  For example, the screenshot above shows a very subtle yet very obvious nod to Among Us. The familiar gameplay of hammering, painting and tiling returns, now only smoother and more intuitive than those seen in the first House Flipper title.

There is a very useful radial menu which contains all of the tools you will need to successfully renovate houses, and people who regularly play first-person shooters might be familiar with this weapon-wheel-like system.

Each job that you go to contains a list of objectives, referred to as Quests in-game.  These quests not only give you a list of tasks that you need to do in order to complete the job, but they also help you to keep track of how much of each task is left.  This is especially helpful when looking for that last piece of rubbish to throw out or that hidden stain that refuses to reveal itself.

Tricky positioning

Object placement feels good at first, but when precision is required, things can become tricky,. Especially when working in tight spaces.  For example, when placing a wooden chair by a table in a small area, you will need to place your character in a position where you can see the exact destination of the chair before you can place it.  Attempting to place it in the same place from a different vantage point simply doesn’t compute unless you can see it directly.  Whilst this may not seem like a huge issue, it is when dealing with congested areas.

I soon realised that instead of needing to worry about placing objects precisely and sensibly, I could in fact place them anywhere in the specified room and would still be given the associated stars, accolades and rewards.  An example of this is when a café required a certain number of tables and chairs.  After spending a while trying to fit everything neatly, logically and sensibly into the small space, I soon realised that I could simply place all the tables close to one another in one corner, do the same with the chairs in another corner, and end up with the same outcome.  It would have been nice to reward players for logical, sensible decision-making rather than simply rewarding them the same amount regardless of layout.

Improving your skills

Perks enable you to improve your existing skills across several points.  These allow you to essentially save time by enhancing your abilities and/or tools.  For example, you can improve your painting skills to the point where you have a secret, extendable roller which allows you to cover as little or as much space per swoop as you wish.

The job management system feels nice, incorporating your character’s laptop and mobile phone into the process.  You access your laptop to find new jobs in the form of emails which are, for some reason, listed on a map of all things.  Despite not being a logical way to manage email, however, it seems to work and even creates further immersion as it helps you to become more acquainted with the town that you reside in.

Who needs a tutorial?

In the early game, almost every (email) job you take on teaches you a new skill to prepare you for what lies ahead.  I found this to be a really good way to incorporate what is essentially training or a tutorial without needing to have a dedicated mode.

You are required to take courses on how to build and construct certain things.  Strangely, upon completion of a course, you are then given an in-store discount towards items in the same category for no perceivable reason.  For example, after learning how to drill a hole into a wall, adding a screw into it and hanging a picture from it, I then received a 2% discount off of all picture frames in the in-game store.

Minigames all around

The minigames are intuitive, unique and enjoyable.  However, there were several times when I found myself angrily hitting Ctrl + Z because I’d accidentally placed a tile on a wall instead of on the floor due to a stray click of the mouse.  An undo feature would have been extremely helpful because it would have saved me so much time and frustration.  Instead, there were only two ways that I could see to rectify the particular problem that I had (and which I’m sure that several other people have had also).  The first was to match the exact paint type and colour of the wall, buy the paint and then repaint that one square.  The second option was to repaint the entire room in a colour that was close to the original one so that everything matched.

However, completed houses don’t affect anything externally, such as characters or the town overall.  They remain static after completion, which feels slightly anticlimactic.  It would have been nice to perhaps receive future calls from existing clients, either requesting further work or even asking you why you placed a kitchen floor tile on the dining room wall.

A singleplayer experience

House Flipper 2 features no true multiplayer mode.  This means that, despite being able to submit your projects to online leaderboards and taking part in community challenges, there is a distinct lack of co-op play.  It would have been nice to be able to renovate houses with friends and this feels like a missed opportunity.  Perhaps a future update will see this feature added.

There is a diverse catalogue of properties available to work on in Pinnacove, as well as a sandbox mode that is available from the very beginning.  However, once you have become accustomed to the process of flipping houses, the novelty, thrill and even the fun can soon wear off.  Community-shared jobs and challenges can extend your playtime, but ultimately House Flipper 2 thrives on short bursts of satisfaction (such as learning and mastering new skills) rather than marathon sessions.

There is appropriately pleasant, yet forgettable, background music that plays throughout each job that you work on.  At first, this is perfectly fine but that is only until it begins to repeatedly loop.  After the first hour or two, I turned the music off altogether as I found myself becoming distracted and even irritated by it rather than it enhancing the experience.

Conclusion

House Flipper 2 offers a pleasant, polished and enjoyable renovation experience whilst not straying too far from the original formula.  The improved visuals, charming setting and sandbox mode are welcome additions, but the lack of true multiplayer and potential repetitiveness hold the game back from its true potential.  Overall, House Flipper 2 is a decent, immersive renovation simulator that sees you learn and tackle all the tasks of modern-day renovation work.  If it is ever-evolving gameplay that you are after, however, then prepare to be disappointed.  With that said, House Flipper 2 will provide players with hours of fun working on unique and interesting projects that will enable them to let their creativity run free.

Pros:

  • A diverse range of houses.
  • A readily available sandbox mode.
  • Highly enjoyable minigames.
  • Huge catalogue of items to buy.
  • Hidden collectibles and secrets.

Cons:

  • An undo option would be a massive help.
  • Pleasant yet forgettable soundtrack.
  • Gameplay loop can become repetitive in the later game.
  • Mostly cleaning jobs in the early game.
  • No true multiplayer option.

Grade: 7,5

House Flipper 2 is currently available through GeForce Now and Xbox Cloud Gaming. This review was made by Mus from PapaBear Gaming. You can check out his channel right here. You can follow him on Twitter by going here. That was it for our House Flipper 2 review.