Genre: adventure, platforming
Platform: PS4, PS3, PS Vita, WiiU, PC
Stick It To The Man – Review
Stick It To The Man is the latest game from Swedish development studio Zoink! A what a quirky little delight it is… on the outset.
You might have heard or seen comparisons between Stick it to the Man to games like Grim Fandango and Pshyconaughts, and I can confirm this to be true, in both art direction and in comedic value. However, whilst this is a compliment of huge proportions, I do feel that Stick It To The Man wont be put into the same bracket in years to come.
First lets assess the story – as the player we take control of Ray Doewood, a likableble kind of guy – Ray’s job is to test hard hats… Yes, test hard hats, a job I hadn’t ever considered existed before but hey, how do they know they work?! Ray takes a hammer to the head (I can imagine that’s a fairly regular occurrence) and it knocks him for six… Leaving him a little bit dazed so he must make his way home…
From here Stick It To The Man is your everyday platformer, with simple controls, running from left to right and jumping over obstacles and gaps to find yourself at the end checkpoint to cue a cut-scene or dialogue. Simples. Simples is right, and that is half the issue I have with Stick It To The Man. It all feels too familiar, run, jump, fall down a ditch, repeat.
As the story progresses a sort of unidentified, alien life form falls from a military-esque aircraft and makes its way into our, “hero’s,” brain. Stay with me on this… This alien thingy, is seemingly very important to some rather off looking gentlemen, and it becomes apparent why as Ray Doewood is able to read the minds of other characters, he also has the ability to grab hold of pins that are dotted around the cardboard cut out world, which are primarily used for fast travelling and avoiding general nasties.
Ray, with his new abilities has an interesting method of helping others, by reading their minds he can save peoples marriages, lives, pets and friendships with family members by tending to their exact needs… It’s all very pretty but none of it feels challenging. The henchman of the previously mentioned bad guy, are all about chasing Ray – when being pursued by the broad suited henchmen I never felt particularly worried about what outcome found me due to very forgiving checkpoints and a general lack of difficulty.
This is where I lost interest… and began rolling down my playtime with the game.
Don’t get me wrong this is an artistically and aesthetically pleasing game, something about the, scrapbook, sticker cum cardboard look rings the bells of Paper Mario and the sorts, but the lack of difficulty and a somewhat light story makes it an airy affair. It is a hard one to rate, as the concept and design is all present and correct, as is the wit, however the lack of difficulty makes it a little bit of a non runner for me, and I often find myself only flicking over to play it when looking for light playtime in between some of the Playstation Network’s other titles, namely, “Resogun,” and “Dead Nation.”
Stick It To The Man is fundamentally a good game - the problem is, currently the PSN is awash with other games that can keep me entertained and challenged for far longer. The artistic edge is there, the wit is there, but to me, for a game to be a "game," rather than a playable story it has to have that challenging edge, and this isn't present which is a crying shame. For that reason alone I lost almost all interest with it, the story was engaging enough but with no huge relation to any of the games spotlight characters it never had me pining for more and instead I only really played for short periods of time.
With that said, there will be mountains of you who will enjoy this offering due to its unique style and general charm, but for the reasons I have given above, it just misses out on a higher score. As a PS Plus gift, Stick It To The Man was a welcome addition to my Playstation library, but coughing up my hard earned for it, when there are other offerings there would be somewhat pushing it I'm sorry to say.
- Quick witted
- The story didn't pull me in