Throwback: Battleblock Theater (Originally Posted July 10, 2014)
Oh The Behemoth, how I love you. Your lovely art style, your hilarious writing, your adorable sound design, your tight controls. You make such lovely games and the tradition continues with Battleblock Theater.
The opening cutscene alone is enough to buy the game for. The narrator is quick and witty and the story is just as absurd and adorable as anything else The Behemoth has made. Hatty, the leader of all of your friends is on the boat, of friendship. The Friend Ship, if you will. A storm casts the friendship into an island populated by cats. The cats put a hat on Hatty, who then turns evil and you and all of your friends are forced to be part of a deadly play for the cats.
As you climb higher in levels the theater becomes better and better; populated by more than your guards and looking like a proper theater and not an abandoned ruin.
Each new Scene brings new challenges and mechanics, from pressure activated light bridges to throwing boulders and even more.
There's a plethora of weapons to unlock, from the starting landmine to ice blocks, electric balls, fireballs, boomerangs; there's a ridiculous amount of ways to kill your enemies.
Speaking of which, the way you unlock the weapons is even amusing. Each level has a ball of golden yarn, by collecting them you can head to the Gift Shop and find the to bribe-able guards, who will give you a random weapon for 5 yarn. The last one I unlocked was a boomerang, which compared to the fireball and eletro-hoduken it's utterly useless.
"The Gift Shop?", you might ask. Why yes, there is a gift shop in this prison/theater. Besides buying weapons from shady guards, you can also buy prisoners. The gems you're required to collect in each level are used to unlock new prisoner heads, again, at random.
"But Gabby! You haven't talked about the game yet!" Oh, right. As a game it's great. I don't own a 360 pad, but it still plays like butter on a keyboard for me; though that could just be because I'm used to platformers on a keyboard. The controls feel fine, though the jumping feels a touch floaty from time to time, but nothing that will make you rage.
The levels get progressively harder, but so far haven't been even close to Super Meat Boy in difficulty. New puzzles and ways of getting around levels are scattered about the more Scenes you complete, keeping them fresh and fun.
Overall the game is a fun challenge and well worth the $14.99 (or your regional equivalent) on Steam. I can't speak to the multiplayer though, sadly, as I haven't actually played it. I'm sure I'll change that this weekend, since a few friends picked the game up during the summer sale, but I can imagine it's more insane fun.