The other obvious change from the first title is that the setting is much more varied. Instead of just endless snow-covered areas, players will actually mix it up by visiting tropical locales on the planet as well. The issue with this is that while many of the rain forest areas look spectacular in HD, the various trees and vines will block your camera, making it very difficult to see at times. It may some like a small problem, but the fact that it happens throughout many of the levels cause it to be a significantly larger issue than it seems to be on the surface.
The other big problem with the tropical areas is that they don't play much different than the frozen tundra areas. The player is still encouraged to gather thermal energy, even though this would've been a great way for Capcom to have abandoned this aspect of gameplay, and the players move just as poorly on solid ground as they do in snow.
Perhaps the best way to describe the gameplay of Lost Planet 2 is "tired". The gameplay hasn't changed incredibly much from the first entry in the series, which may please die-hard fans, but it will likely frustrate those that were hoping Capcom learned from a few of the design mistakes in the first title. The characters usually move slowly and in a very clunky manner, which is very frustrating when fighting pirates or taking on giant Akrid.
Graphically speaking, the game is very pretty. The snow levels look just as great as they did in the first title and the rain forest levels are refreshing and exotic looking. The biggest issue with presentation lies within the cutscenes. Capcom tries hard to capture the epic cinematic feel that titles like Modern Warfare 2 and Gears of War 2 have so effectively brought into the shooter genre, but more times than not, Lost Planet 2 falls flat in this regard.
Lost Planet 2 is not a terrible game, but rather a game that should have been better. The set-up is somewhat frustrating from the start, but with some better in-game design choices Capcom could have put out one of the better games of the year. The epic boss battles, 15 - 20 hour long campaign and online co-op can be outstanding fun if you can get a good group of people to play through with. Lost Planet 2 will likely go down in the annals of gaming history as a cult-classic that could have had massive universal appeal with just a few small tweaks.