Whipseey and the Lost Atlas – Good Enough

Whoopsee, the word you say when you’ve just bought a one dollar eShop game and the existential guilt washes over you. Oh sorry, I meant to say Whipseey. Everything is fine here. We’re jumping right into the depths of the Nintendo Switch library now. I love platformers so I took the plunge on this when it was on sale for a dollar. Aesthetically it looks like a Kirby clone but the feel is more like a Game Boy Mario game if he had a whip. This game has 5 worlds so I’m going to make this review 5 paragraphs.

The most important thing to me in a platformer is the controls, and Whipseey gets that right. You can jump, whip things, and you can also hover with the whip. No fancy transformations or special attacks, just very basic platforming. The actions have a good response time but the animations have so few frames it sometimes feels like the framerate is worse than it actually is. This can make grappling jumps with your whip a bit tricky as they don’t leave any room for error. It’s a good day for a swim though.

This developer definitely went to game design school because this game gets a lot of the principles right. The level design is solid and satisfying. New enemies and threats are introduced one by one, then by the end of the level they start to team up and things escalate. The enemy variety is quite impressive considering the small amount of levels. Each level has a bunch of unique enemies with their own movement and patterns, including a boss fight each. These offer some of the best moments of the game I think, with a variety of patterns that produce fun gameplay. I had one gripe with a boss spawning on top of me but nothing’s perfect. The game’s health system is very forgiving. One disappointment I had with the level design however, is the lack of secrets. There’s absolutely nothing to get besides health and gems. Getting 100 gems will give you an extra life.

The game has original music but it’s not very interesting. Some melodies are kind of alright and add some suitable ambience, but I can’t even remember a single tune off the top of my head. There was some Sonic Spinball inspired bass somewhere, the ice world sounded cold, and the title screen is a bit loud. Nothing great but it does the job. There’s also a story told in a few seconds of still images. From what I can gather, Whipseey used to be a human boy until he opened a book and transformed into a pink blob. You’ll never guess what happens at the end.

Whipseey and the Lost Atlas is a solid platformer that can be beaten in an hour, which is exactly what I did while streaming it for the first time. It’s cheap, short and easy, but a fun romp if you like platformers. It copies gameplay from other games but still offers a couple of original bosses and enemy designs. It has a few fun moments but ultimately it’s a game that’s very inoffensive, safe, and forgettable. Just think of it as a pink flavoured cup of boba with 100 tiny sugary gems at the bottom.

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