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The V², being the debut game of Captain Crunch. It was released immediately after Sweet Invader.
The premise is that you're going to go out and capture the lands of your rival cereals, such as Trix and Honey Smacks. Your objective is to capture the fifteen lands and defeat their leaders in close up combat, while utilizing your crew of kids to help defeat enemies and get them to press switches or do puzzles that you normally can't. It ain't just strategy and platforming, it also comes with a lot of combat.
Captain Crunch is very strong, and you'll notice this as you progress further into the game. In his arsenal is a cutlass which can pierce through enemy defenses, a sword which is used as a general means of combat, and a cannon which shoots giant puffs of Captain Crunch's cereal to devastate foes. The more progress that's made in the game, the more abilities that Captain Crunch will learn and master, and you can upgrade abilities to to become stronger, like get a diamond cutlass to do the highest defense piercing in the game. He has a lot of health and can't die easily, but if he falls, it's game over! Keep yourself healed.
The kids aren't quite as strong but can still be really helpful. Captain Crunch can whistle to them to bring them over to him, or point his fingers towards opponents he wants them to attack. While the kids don't have high defense at all, they are easy to heal and don't take too much to return to max health. The kids will gang up on enemies and fight them brutally and give them little to no chance to survive battle. By leveling up, they become just a bit stronger and have more of a chance to survive. If a kid falls in battle, you'll need to feed them Golden Cinnamon cereal, which is rare to find. Each kid has advantages and disadvantages.
Beyond land traveling, Captain Crunch can sail the Seas of Milk and travel to other lands. Because of the freedom you have to travel wherever you wish, you can visit any of the lands in order, besides the final four main story ones. However traveling the Seas of Milk is a gameplay mode on its own, for when you do so, you'll be steering the ship and firing at other ships to prevent them from destroying your boat, and you can recruit new kids stranded on islands, whom of which have been waiting for someone to rescue them.
Outside of just capturing other regions, Captain Crunch can also collect Berry Gems, and there are a hundred scattered throughout each world, often being in places off the "main path", and are the prize of very difficult puzzles hidden in the game. By collecting Berry Gems, can unlock things like weapons, new kids to join your team, and more, and for every time 400 is collected, a new mode is unlocked, including a boss rush, which I guess is something of a tradition in my games by now. He can also collect normal Gemstones, which can be spent on things in the shop to get higher ranked items or better equipment.
When completing a world, Captain Crunch will be ranked for his efforts. He can get from a "Gross" rating (worst) to a "Good" rating (moderate) to the highest of all, "Delicious!" (best). Things that are counted as part of his efforts of how long it took for him to get to the boss and defeat it, how many enemies he's slayed, the amount of health he has, and how many Gemstones he's collected. Captain Crunch can return to the world any time after it's completed to try and obtain a higher ranking.
Captain Crunch is rather sane and means no harm, and does nothing much other than advertising his cereal brand when he's not going around and taking over the Cereal Dimension. He's real easy to get along with when you decide to friend him, but don't get on his dark side! He's real, real strong...
The first kid Captain Crunch recruits, and is a sweet, gentle kid who gets along with everybody, and everybody. Out of the kids, she's the only one without a generic name and quotes and is the strongest of them, aiding Captain Crunch in his journey. All the other kids get randomized quotes, but Jola will always be Jola and the first one Crunch gets on his travels.
The antagonistic and evil Captain Crunch, the result of combining the generic bad guys that cereal mascots often fight. He took on the shape of the captain after realizing that he was super powerful, and now hosts strengths and abilities similar to his own. His health is mega high and he's real powerful, and even has kids of his own that fight for him. He may or may not be the final boss.
While he has literally nothing to do with Kellogg, the Kool-Aid Man operates the game's store. He takes the gems that you collect from around the world and gives you actual items in return. He makes things rather expensive, but there's one thing you can get cheap, and that is his Kool-Aid. OH YEEEAH.