Thursday, September 5, 2019

Whipseey and the Lost Atlas (NSW, PS4, XB1, PC) Review

Let's ease into this month of reviews with a short game (and that's putting it mildly). It's Whipseey and the Lost Atlas for all current major gaming platforms.

A game that needed to get whipped into better shape

I enjoy cute platformers, whether it's Kirby, LittleBigPlanet, or even The Legendary Starfy--by the way, Nintendo, bring that series back! Whipseey and the Lost Atlas has all the makings of an enjoyable platformer. It has tight controls, it has a reasonable difficulty to it, and it's just delightful with its pixel art appearance. Unfortunately, it has one costly issue that doesn't make for an appealing overall game.

Whipseey and the Lost Atlas reminds me greatly of earlier Kirby adventures, particular Kirby's Dream Land. It was a basic platformer that introduced Kirby to the world, but it was over all too quickly. Here, then, is Whipseey and the Lost Atlas, also introducing a new character to the world, the pink blob known as Whipseey, but instead of inhaling enemies and spitting them out, our pudgy hero whips foes into submission. This whip also can be used to grasp onto hooks and allow Whipseey to swing across chasms.

And like, Kirby's Dream Land, Whipseey and the Lost Atlas, too, is over far too quickly. You can imagine my surprise when I set aside a two-hour play session for Whipseey's adventure only to find that I had already beaten the game with a little over an hour to spare. Yes, there are only five levels in Whipseey and the Lost Atlas, and there are no secrets to discover. No hidden rooms, no optional goals, no in-game achievements for Switch owners to shoot for. Nothing.

The main difference between Kirby's Dream Land and Whipseey and the Lost Atlas is that the latter is actually rather challenging in parts. There are lot of precarious jumps where enemies await to ambush you, or require you to master midair whips to clear the way so you can safely land. Meanwhile, bosses all have patterns to make note of and master in order to beat them into submission. With limited lives and limited health, levels have a way of bringing on the challenge. Though, when I found myself with only one or two lives at the start of a new level, I'd purposely get a game over, so I'd be booted back to the world map screen. That way I could resume the level with a greater amount of lives.

My biggest issue with Whipseey and the Lost Atlas is that there's potential for a greater adventure with Whipseey's solid enough mechanics, but then you blink and it's all over and the potential was completely squandered. When there are so many cheaper and better options available to Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC players, it's insanely difficult to recommend spending the five dollar asking price for Whipseey and the Lost Atlas. It has its heart in the right place, but Whipseey doesn't have much more than that. When plenty of free game demos offer way more content than what is on offer with this particular game, Whipseey and the Lost Atlas is not a game I can recommend at its current price.

[SPC Says: D]

A review code was provided for this game.

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