Right from the start I think most would notice that The Adventure Pals might be a homage to the very popular show Adventure Time. I must admit I am not too familiar with the show, but from what I do know I can say that its quirky and weird humour has made its way to this title. You take control of Wilton. Wilton is then aided by his two best friends, Sparkles, a Giraffe, and Mr Rock… a rock. Disaster strikes and your father has been kidnapped and it is time for the unlikely trio to make things right.
Developed by Massive Monster and launching at $14.99 on the Switch, The Adventure Pals fits all kinds of genre elements underneath its platforming umbrella. This is then matched with a story that is light on drama, but heavy on puns and humour. Right off the bat I think it is safe to say that fans of Adventure Time would have a good time, but lets have a deeper look.
Primarily being a 2D platformer with more of a focus on collecting and exploring over precision platforming, each level has a ruby at the end of it and then optional stickers and cupcakes to find. Sparkles and Mr Rock will aid Wilton in his journey through levels. Sparkles tongue can be used to glide and Mr Rock can be thrown to activate switches. This isn’t the only benefit they have as they back up Wilton in combat. Wilton himself is armed with a sword and has basic actions. Attack, dodge, and a counter attack he gets through leveling up. Then Sparkles will latch onto foes and Mr Rock can be thrown at them. Finally through defeating foes you will gain experience and each time you level up you get to choose from a selection of upgrades.
All these mechanics gel together well, but sadly none of them really excel. For the most part the platforming is easy and the combat quite basic. Even the bosses felt pretty simple and it’s a real shame as the designs of the bosses were excellent. It’s not that any of these mechanics are bad, but more of a case of a Jack of all Trades is a master of none.
It’s Time for Adventure
As the name suggests and mentioned before. Adventure Pals is a tribute to the Adventure Time show. The visuals here are superb and look just like you are playing through a cartoon. Bright colours, underwater kingdoms, lands filled with dinosaurs it all looks great. My only compaint though is that whilst the overall world themes are good the variety within each individual level is a bit poor. Each world has 5 levels and in all honestly I don’t think I could tell many of them apart from aquick glance.
The humour and writing should go down well. Particularly for fans of the show. I have only seen one episode, but from just glancing through a list of the characters I can see where the inspiriration for some of the worlds inhabitants comes from. The puns and jokes keep coming at you that you are bound to chuckle here and there. Then the story itselfs is so bonkers that it’ll put a smile on most peoples faces.
I didn’t get to spend much time in the co-op mode, but it is all right. It doesn’t add much to the game or takeaway from it. Overall, the campaign was a pretty decent length for what you are paying for and with all the collectibles stashed throughout the world there is a reason to go back and play some other levels.
There are arena levels spread across each world and I did notice some slowdown on the first one I played ,but this never seemed to be an issue in the platforming levels. Then to wrap up as I said it is a shame that the game just isn’t that challenging.
System reviewed on: Nintendo Switch.
Disclaimer: A review code for The Adventure Pals was provided by Sandbox Strat.