That one time I used a Death Ray to Kill all my Friends: Pinkie Plays Pummel Party

Hear Ye , Hear Ye!  Princess Pinkie has returned with a gaming post!

Salutations my loyal subjects and sweet island guests.  This video game review might be the last normal one I play in a while. I got something new planned that I am really excited about! Something very random!  Yet today I want to talk to you about a very fun game I played with some friends. Mario Party! Except it’s not Mario Party. It IS ..but also it isn’t!  The game I am talking about is called Pummel Party!

A Rebuilt Game

Buy Pummel Party CD Key Compare Prices

Pummel Party is created by a studio called Rebuilt Games who offer their fantastic game for just 13 euros on steam, so I ‘d estimate about $15 dollar or so.  In this game you play a coloured dude hidden in some sort of customisable morph suit! You play against 1 to 7 other guys dressed in a coloured Morphsuit and that’s it. How do you do that?!   Well you walk across a board game by rolling a ten sided dice, which can land you on all sorts of tiles that make the overworld react with you, you either get a currency, in this case keys, you can make a ghost steal other’s people’s keys…or rip them apart, and you can gather items or make random things in the world happen.. like the water level rising.  You all do this so you can reach a specific spot at a board where you can exchange your currency for a chalice!  The one who owns the most chalices at the end is the winner.  At the end of every round you play a minigame.. and at the end of the game you are awarded bonus  chalices that can totally change the game.. you must not just try to play for yourself but also hinder other players from winning …and …. wait… this is THE EXACT gameplay of Mario Party?!

Yes let’s get this thing out of the way first, this game is Mario Party without the nintendo license.  Instead of 20 (or 10)  coins you need 40 keys . Instead of a toad, there is just a chest you open.. instead of Boo, it’s the Grim Reaper, but nearly everything you can do in this game is just based on Mario Party. The way the map branches of in all sorts of routes, the way  you can earn currency trough minigames. Even the bonus stars are copied. If you like Mario Party as a concept but never had a Nintendo console, this is the game that emulates the sensation quite well!  Extremely well even.. during the game all my friends and me kept using super mario terms for words because we just felt this was Mario Party.. yet at the end I had to draw a conclusion. I liked Pummel Party more than I like Super Mario Party.. by a fair margin! At least compared to the newer Mario Parties. This game feels more like a modern take on Mario Party 1.

A party for everyone

Pummel Party – Gametrodon

To a lot of people, the Mario flavour is what makes Mario Party games so fun!  It’s great to play as Mario or Peach and humiliate your friends!  Pummel Party has no such sentiment, you play a blank character in some general stages. To many that will mean this game already is deemed inferior. Yet I like to argue that Mario Party has a bit of confusing flavouring. Suddenly Peach is as physically strong as Donkey Kong and Bowser, suddenly Mushrooms and Stars work very differently and while the characters are super iconic their motivations and story changed quite hard. That is not a problem, it is a perfectly fine solution ..but it DOES show that the “Mario” Part in the party is strictly a cosmetic one. There isn’t anything intrinsically Mario that makes the party better. It’s just Mario being there that makes it fun and easier to fall in love with characters or stages to those who love mario.  If for a moment we would strip all recognisable features away.. I think Pummel Party is the stronger of the two titles, because it knows it is a more generic game and caters to it.

Pummel Party needs an angle.. it needs to have it’s angle in gameplay, rather than esthetics and that it does. You see where in the more known series you can screw each other over a fair bit, this game takes that much further. You do not just steal coins from each other. You shoot each other in the face. Toss Nuclear Waste on others and can actually murder characters on the overworld map.. which resets them to a more disadvantageous position.  Even in the minigames, you do not just win currency; those who do well get rewarded with items to mess each other up a bit.  Another great idea is that turn order is based on how you performed in Minigames.  This makes it so that someone can dash for a chalice if they do well at Minigames, but also allows the later players to mess them up a lot more as they are oftenly in the more reactive slots. The items in Pummel Party are less “cryptic” .. A boxing Glove punches someone in the keister, while a disintegration death ray does exactly what it says on the box. My favourite item is the nuclear waste, which causes extreme swellings and damage over time.. but that same swelling prevents the affected player to use items.  Either way of battling you can enjoy it if your not a big Mario fan.

Pummel Party - New Items, Translations, Minigames, Cosmetics and more -  Steam News

The same thing happens with the minigames of this game. The first Mario Party and maybe the second one, were simple enough. Bounce each other platforms, hit stuff with a hammer to get as many coins as possible! Yet as Mario Party moved on, these minigames became less user friendly. Mario Party 10 brought it back to normal a bit, but a lot of their minigames tend to feel gimmicky.   “Where do you detect the most rumble, water a flower in the distance, using balloons and stuff.  It’s all okay and simple enough to understand but some games tend to really farfetched. Pummel Party goes for a much simpler approach in 90% of their minigames.  Play a game of “King of the Hill” , play a short  round of a third person competitive shooter,  play a short bit of air combat game  and play 3 rounds of  It feels much more as if you are playing actual video games that have been scaled down, rather than play gimmicks with a mechanic to beat it fast. As a result most games feel much more instinctive with a bigger focus on direct competition which increases their fun.

Hushed Game

Pummel Party - New Map, New Minigames, Workshop Teaser plus more - Steam  News

One thing where Mario Party has Pummel Party beat is at it’s sound design.  Pummel Party has a very quiet feel to it. There is no loud background music and there is not really any memorable music in the games. It all is very far away. Even when you pick up keys on the maps you don’t hear clingely sounds or something very satisfying. You do hear each other’s bones cracking and the weapons firing as you go around, but other than that it’s a bit boring in the audio department…. then again I think this is a good thing as well. You will play this online with friends, perhaps stream  the game or whatever people do these days. The music is so silent it will never get copyright claimed, if it would even do so at all! The game even partnered with Twitch, having some Twitch inspired costumes and even a stage based on Twitch!  It was perfectly mixed to hear my friends on my headset while still knowing what is going on in the game! Yet the sound design does reveal a secondary flaw compared to Mario Party.

Top 30 Pummel Party GIFs | Find the best GIF on Gfycat

While you CAN technically play this game by yourself against AI , it is not very fun to do so. The AI is a lot more competent than it’s Nintendo counterpart but because everything is so quite, when no one is talking to you, the game is quite boring. It just does not feel satisfying to use that disintegration laser on an undeserving AI, while it feels hilarious on an undeserving player, just so you can get an achievement out of it! Mario Party has things talking to you, a more upbeat soundtrack and other things that can really make a game, this game unfortunately can’t do the same! No story mode, no mini game island, no single player content at all. It really is made to play with your friends!  The game has a chat feature so even if you are shy to talk, you can communicate, which is an option I very much appreciate, even even if just chatting the game is pretty fun.. but the motivations to use the cool items are much more personal  So playing this by yourself is pretty much a no go.

Pummel Party - Pummel Awards, Minigames, Rulesets, Game Statistics &  More - Steam News

The game isn’t too ambitious with it’s unlocks either, you can unlock some cloaks for your character but that’s about it! The game does seem to receive some updates every now and again so that is a plus, but again in it’s design it just feels a tad bit tinier than the well known franchise. Maybe it’s a tad more humble?!  The game doesn’t have that many stages, though still more than the most recent Mario Party and one of the stages has a random layout so in terms of repeatability this game will go far!  As long as you have friends to enjoy this game with! 

Koop Pummel Party Steam

The game also has a slightly higher pace than the title I mentioned many times already!  There is less dialogue due to it’s quiet nature and every dialogue pops up faster and is handled with a single button press. We don’t get shouty pop ups for every turn, we do not have two random characters making bets on who is going to win and there is no huge stage exposition! The game kind of expects you to know how this game works from just looking at it.. or by experimenting and reading descriptions and for that I do really love it again. It has a much better pacing and drops silly things like having a minigame on the last turn, as earning keys no longer matters; it can simply be cut!  It does a great job!

I genuinely believe that this game is in many ways better than it’s bigger more famous inspiration. It feels more accessible and more for gamers, at the same time making it something I truly could get on board with. It cuts the clutter and doesn’t beat around the bush as much and honestly I really do like dressing up as a Pink Morphsuit Ragdoll with a unicorn hat and a rainbow cape more than dressing as an iconic character.  It is hard to explain the feeling but because the drop of famous characters you can punish each other in more satisfying ways, you can be more build and visual and it results in more satisfying minigames. Mario can’t be cut in half with a lightsaber but a pummel buddy can! It triggers these primal instincts and I just end up feeling more satisfied with this one! I really love a game of Pummel Party!

Have you played Pummel Party?! What did you think about the game? Have you always wanted to shoot a death beam of doom at your friends? Let me know in the comments and if you want me to find more party game gems like these please consider supporting my Kofi! Kofi for content! Stay Random!

The Legend of Zzzzelda: Sword of Ditto Review

Most of you know that Link in most of Zelda games is a reincarnation or an ancestor of the games we played with before. However the timeline of this universe is murky at best.  So how about we would get a Zelda game with a clear timeline?! Nintendo was not up for it so instead Onebitbeyond made a Zelda clone that lets you play as a whole slew of heroes reincarnated throughout time. One game the entire timeline.. that sounds epic right?!…..Right?!

<Disclaimer: I reviewed the STEAM version as trough the eyes of a single player experience, it is possible to play with more which may alter the experience, also other versions can have different forms of content.. this is strictly based on MY play-trough and what I experienced>

Sword of Ditto : Curse of Mormo  starts of super charmingly and funny. The graphical style reminds me a bit of the quasi modern cartoons like Super Adventure Time , Star Versus Evil and Steven Universe. A Dung Beetle named Puku shows up and drags out a destined hero to face the evil queen Mormo as her evil rules again. You get a little green outfit as you hold your sword above your head and the dung beetle drags you into the tower where your character gets promptly killed. He was underprepared. Whoops! A funny intro I will give them that. We then move to the next generation, the world seems slightly more devoid of life.. the town a lot more somber as we play a new hero. This time Puku tells you the basics.. Mormo has two Anchors that you need to destroy.. which are hidden deep in some dungeons. However to get access to these dungeons you need two toys of legends.. weapons with alternate functions if you will such as the bow or a yoyo that is kinda like a boomerang.. or a ring that kind of works like a grappling hook.

You can also gain a big foot! , though I am not sure how they got it at level 1

If you die in the field your bug friend will most likely save you but in some dungeons and the final encounter there is no resurrection possible so if you die there.. the world is ruled by Mormo once again and you have to fight her again. So Sword of Ditto is kind of like a Zelda Roguelite ..which kinda sounds like a bad idea to begin with due to the nature of all the tools you need but the game at least is very forgiving.While I deeply enjoyed the playthrough of the second lifetime.. as it really felt like a classic Zelda.. it would quickly turn to a much worse trip than I would have imagined. I beat Mormo on my first playthrough… now I would have to do it again..I spend all my resources on life potions because I expected this battle to be super rough but it was super easy… so now I had to do it all over again and start from scratch. This did not feel right to me.. something was eating at me, a feeling that  would only get worse.

I like the colours!

Let’s kick of with the positives however. It controls super nice, the fighting is fun, the mechanics are clever and the game looks super great and cute. Even though those pineapple monster things are straight up from Zelda and there is an old man.. cracked walls where you place bombs.. a c-button where you can lay out for toys to actively switch in.. sound effects when you open a door or a chest appears, silver keys for tiny doors and a gold key leading to a boss room in dungeons, even ancient tablets that tell the history of the world… Okay this game is SO much a Zelda clone that is basically a homage.  Yet that feels great to me.. it loves the Zelda games so much that it doesn’t stray from the old formula. Being one of the few persons in the world that doesn’t really like Breath of the Wild (as a Zelda game, I would be fine would this be a new IP but still find it tedious) I was happy I at least got to play something new that till feels like something classic. It does really cater to that need.

I imagine this screenshot with a certain overworld theme!

The combat is great, fun and dynamic, enemies all weaknesses, some are vulnerable to elements, some to toys others simply to your sword and some need to be attacked in the back. I really had some fun discovering the weaknesses. Toys can be leveled up and you can increase your attack power by putting stickers everywhere. Which is a fun way to mod your game. Each generation after the second comes with a Curse from Mormo.. which theoretically can really give you a cool gameplay variant. Some dungeons have their own conditions as well.. such as your sword being nerfed.. or dodge rolling taking mana/battery power. Yet it can be bonuses as well such as extra experience or even attack boosts or elemental immunities.

Why is my bathtub in this game?

There are pots you can break (who would have guessed)  that are filled with certain elements these can alter the battlefield. Such as poison which is a simple dot, fire, which is yet again a dot.. ether ..which if you or the enemy fill their either meter, you crystalise and become stunned.. and some yellow goop that makes everything it touches bleed money. There are plenty of weapons , plenty of NPC’s that upgrade stuff and you can collect celestial crystals to pass a toy or stickers to the next generation. Bombs come in several variaties like exploding ones, ether ones, fire ones and even MICE!… Thats right a bomb shaped like a mouse that crawls over the floor and bombs you. Bombs You?! Sounds familiar.

All in all it’s a very charming looking game, you can even unlock new sorts of heroes to reincarnate as in the next version, such as a luchador, a ninja, a mouse a frog or even a robot. My favorite one was the Kitsune because I love the Yoyo boost they get. Each hero type can level up and gets better stickers and weapons in the next generation which seems like a need idea. This game is like a love letter to Zelda with some clever ideas of their own, so surely this has to result in a terrific game right?  It even has the option to make your controller prompts look all Nintendo like if you hook up a controller.. or Playstation OR Xbox . So much consideration.. and museum keeper I am pretty sure was named old man! So points for that… yet somehow despite all these strengths.. this game did not work for me… at all.

Sometimes searching for pictures doesn’t go as well as you’d like!

Like I said the second generation is great fun to play through..but you go in blind so in the third generation I lacked some tools. As a Curse I gained the “Ether Storm”  which powered up all the enemies to be above my maximum level (levels are a thing here and if you reach Mormo’s one.. you HAVE to fight her in 24 hours regardless if you got all loot or weakened her enough) this created some annoyance. One area was blinking on my map but due to being undergeared and underleveled I could not make my way there. As it turned out I had to go there to sacrifice an item in my inventory.. a token of my victory over Mormo so I could ignite one of five lights! I did not think I had to destroy that item and I did not see the little stubs on the doors as lights just as decoration.. so when I got there at daytime and I can only tribute at night (which I did not know either) I just thought.. oh maybe in a next generation.
Which was wrong.. because you can not send it over to a new lifetime.. which meant.. the second generation victory was for naught. Two hours of play wasted because I failed to see through some mechanic and in turn making my journey harder because now I had to deal with these curses.

You WILL remember because you play the semi-same game about every hour or so

Now one more round would not have been terrible at all if there were more toys to explore, more clever banter to discover and more characters to unlock and level up. However in the third generation I already maxed out my fox boy.. who now had great stuff and passives.. Attack bonuses I would have to give up by playing another class. If I die with a weaker class. .I lose everything I worked so hard to pass on..  I am not against a game punishing your for dying..but  since the game also punishes you for succeeding through curses and taking your items away every two dungeons it kinda feels needlessly tedious at every step, good or bad.
Just get the stuff you need and get out. Which doesn’t mesh well with the Zelda Formula.

Like keep living in a gas station in the desert in a semi dead world.. this game can feel kinda…pointless

The WORST thing though however is the lack of variety.. in the third generation.. mind you this is the second playable one Puku already repeats all his dungeon dialogue from the second generation. In the fourth I discovered you basically alternate between any combination of only four toys to solve dungeons. With two toys per generation needed that means it does not take long to encounter repeats. So puzzles get boring quickly. All dungeons seem somewhat procedurally generated as well which usually works well enough but mostly in the non essential ones (Which you need to explore for more shards so you can pass on your rewards) this can feel a bit odd. Like two treasure rooms spawning adjacent to each other. Double damage modifiers in a dungeon that has no combat at all or puzzles in dead end rooms with no rewards.  I get the charm of Zelda randomisers to keep things fresh but with these added modifiers it just doesn’t work for me . I don’t mind the dead puzzle room so much.. nor do I mind having my sword damage halved when I just need to open a chest. However it can feel incredibly frustrating if you are grinding for levels to encounter half experience dungeons in one filled with chests and enemies..just to walk into a pot breaking one and see experience is double where there is no xp to get.

Still the game looks super adorable and charming! No matter how meh it was to me!

I gathered four out of five light orbs so far and I threw in the towel then and there as I could not stomach any minute of the game any longer. I would need to go to at least generation 7 due to me missing one tribute, but this game lacks so much. Each Toy dungeon has the same boss.. (though with a different skin.. a sword of ditto of the past.. but these are not your characters just some random things) which meant I had to fight that 12 times.. but both also show up during the Mormo fight so technically that would be 24 times .. you fight “dark Link” There are four bosses in the main dungeon.. or at least I just encountered four.. but one of them I only encountered once. and another I encountered six times.  Even dungeon puzzles begin to loop and that is IF you succeed every time.. this would be the MINIMUM level of repeats. By the fourth light I was playing the same game over and over again with my reward being the same dialogue over and over again..hinting only at a slightly different ending at the end.

The Magic School Bus theme goes here!

Each time I got something upgraded and I got something very cool and new.. I either lacked the celestial shards to pass it to the next generation because cool stuff costs more.. or it got overwritten because I wanted to play as another race. I even encountered the same curse three times! Once I had a timer of seven days which was kinda neat ..but most of the time it is just Ether Storm.. which basically means that aside from grinding for Celestial Shards you also need money and food as well so that is just more grinding. Which you can’t always do because you get time-gated.  The world has several themed areas and they appear randomly.. sometimes they drop resources like shiny stones.. or computer chips which you can trade in at shop-keep for new toys..but the price for the good ones is insane.You have to grind them out so hard that you basically can’t do anything else.. since you can’t pass these on to next generations. Of course you then can buy a toy or a sticker which you then can not pass onto the next generation because you have not grinded Celestial Crystals.. so it all can be for nothing.

I bet if you main the bunny hero.. you’ll visit the motel a lot

Never have I seen a game so relentlessly discouraging any form of the completion or punish you for getting good stuff. If you want a good item.. you have to work for it.. then you have to work to pass it on again.. and then subsequently to keep passing it down every generation.
If you make a game that spans six generations, at least give us enemies to carry us through those 6.. or 5 because we see non in the first generation. I would not mind looping after that.. but during the main run it just feels extremely lazy. There are a few important NPC’s such as a fat Catlike Crime Boss, a Penguin who can up your bomb count and a Walrus who can open boxes.. but even though 100 years pass each time they are all constantly the exact same. Even if you save the world.. your house might get more decrepit.. or spots on the world map randomly get switched to something dystopian like a huge junk yard. It almost doesn’t fit.
I might have just gone really unlucky.. but that is no excuse! I still had a bad experience, if that can happen because of simple RNG you still did something wrong.

Did someone make a bad Bunny Joke?! I ‘ll kill them! He is the vengfull one!

I am really angry at this game because it had so much potential, in a way this IS the game I wanted to see come to be.I’d compare it to P.T.  Releasing as a playable demo and you are all like! Oh this is going to be so awesome.. but then they did not know what to do with it further and just loop it. Like Imagine their studio going like”We build a great over world but we can’t make dungeons”  “Randomly gen it and add this reborn mechanic to it.. we can hide that we did we lost inspiration along the way”

I would not go as far to  call it a bad game..because in so many ways it is not.. but it feels unfinished.. and put together by the duct tape of reincarnation. Which is fine.. if you mask the tape afterwards but they did not do that either. It’s like watching at the ceiling of the Sistine chapel.. but instead of all different forms of art.. there is only the creation of adam up there. The rest is the same painting but the clouds have been replaced by lizards clothing colours have been swapped.. they achieve this by instead of actual artwork just putting a sheet of paper over the cloud with a lizard drawn on top and those new clothes are just some cotton balls they jammed up there while cleaning. There is still some beauty hidden in there..but you can’t help but be pissed off at how cheap they went in the end. 

Rarely felt I so conflicted about a game as in it’s purest form the gameplay is solid, the graphics are amazing and the ideas are creative ..even if it very clearly “borrows” form Zelda games. Yet never have I loathed continuing a game as much as this one in recent times. If it ever sells for like 5 dollars or is part of a humble bundle I recommend you get this, play trough the second and third generation and then leave it alone. I tried to complete it .. and the more and more I discovered how lazy it was the more I began to hate it.. which is why I have no choice but to scare it with my lowest rating.. as I really can’t stand playing it any longer anymore.. with the side note that I kinda feel bad about doing it. It doesn’t mean you’ll have to think the same, I just really dislike tedium in games. I hated keeping grinding for arrows and breaking weapons in Breath of the Wild as well.. and no one seemed to mind otherwise either. This to me just feels like playing the same game five times in a row and it punished me for about everything I did. I hate it! Yet I hate that I hate it too.

I am angry I had to grade like this! I wanted to love this!