Wuppo Review (PS4)
For the purposes of transparency, this review was created using a code provided by the company or their respective PR company. The use of a review code does not affect my judgement of the game.
Wuppo came to PC all the way back in September 2016 via Steam, and now it has been ported over to consoles. I personally had never heard about the game until I got offered the code. So, what sort of impression did Wuppo leave on me?
The story and idea around Wuppo is really simple, but it really does work. As you start Wuppo you are introduced to the Wum that you are going to be in control of. You will soon find out, you are a lazy little Wum with a love for ice cream, and a messy eater at that. Then you are given ice cream, under the promise you wont make a mess. Not surprisingly on the way back to your room in this hotel, you will drip your ice cream all over the carpets in the hotel. Before you manage to even take a lick of the ice cream you room is stormed, they then kick you over your balcony and out of the hotel. This is where your adventure as a Wum starts as you search for a new home – this has you visiting a number of settings and introducing you a wide variety of characters, monsters, and races.
Wuppo is a 2D side-scrolling platform/action-RPG – and that’s the best way I can really explain on what the game tries to be. As you will guess from the description, you should be expecting to do a lot of jumping from single jumps to double jumps in order to navigate around the levels. Now, where does the action-RPG come into Wuppo, this is down to the hit-point system, and the inventory in the game. The inventory in the game is very limited in what it offers, but for what Wuppo is trying to do it works, and its good that it isn’t over complicated. For the action element of the game you do get a weapon (a gun that fires gum-balls), and again this is all really the game needed for the battles it has you doing. You will also in the game come across a good number of boss fights, which all will require you to work out their patterns, attacks and try to counter-attack depending on their movement patterns. The game also throws some puzzling elements at you, like you would find in old action-RPG’s like the Zelda series. Again, some of these puzzles take some figuring out, and I know this can be a little bit of put-off for gamers – especially when they slow down the gameplay and progression in the game. I would recommend taking this into account if this is a turn-off in the way a game plays, however, I would say give the game a chance.
One area I found Wuppo to really excel is the presentation of the game. Don’t get me wrong it’s not a game full of any realism, but not every game has to be about that. The art style is fantastic, and it really bring outs the beauty of the world and areas they have built into Wuppo for you explore. Never mind what you are looking at… be it reaching the top of the tree village, being in the bad weather sections, or even in the corner of a dark cave (with only a candle on your head for light) each part of the game looks lovely. I personally feel all of this coming from such a small team, it really is an achievement. The game’s audio doesn’t speak the words when it comes to dialogue, but they have added noises that suits each character and race. Add to this a decent option based dialogue system, that is full of a large amount of humorous lines and moments between the characters. Also, you the way the game fills in the back story of the world is presented so well. You will need to find film reels around the work, and then you can go back to the first character you meet outside of the hotel, and watch them back as a movie. Saving the best to last is the music in Wuppo, every aspect of the music is fantastic from the ambient background music, or the awesome music that comes in the boss battles.
The control scheme in the game is all pretty much simple, but there is one area that lets it down. For the gameplay elements it is really easy, you have L1 to jump, your left analogue to move (holding down in water will dive down), if you have your weapon equipped you use the right analogue like you would on a twin stick shooter, and X is to interact with objects. Where the controls are let down is the limited inventory options and opening/navigating the inventory and shop menus. All of these together make some of the action-RPG element of the game a little bit fiddly – but that’s the only issue with the control scheme in the game.
Overall Wuppo took me around 16-17 hours to complete. The best thing about it was despite it taking that long to complete not one part of the game felt repetitive – and it seemed to finish around the right time to make sure that did not happen. I could even imagine myself going back and playing through it again at some point in the future – so the game does give you a decent amount of playtime.