I’m always on the lookout for some quality platformers that remind me of the good, old days. Whether you’d prefer side-scrollers or something of the more open variety, you’re in luck either way with New Super Lucky’s Tale. This adorable platformer stars a young fox named Lucky who must collect pages for the Book of Ages and defeat the sorcerer cat Jinx and his villainous children, the Kitty Litter.
Our heroic fox has a pretty simple moveset consisting of a double jump, a tail swipe for attacking enemies and activating switches, and the ability to burrow underground. Lucky may not learn any new abilities as the game progresses, but this moveset is sufficient to conquer six worlds, which (with the exception of world five) allow you to tackle levels in any order for a greater degree of freedom that I very much appreciated.
I recall this game boasting about its variety in gameplay, which is a claim that turns out to be completely accurate. Not only does New Super Lucky’s Tale feature both 2D and 3D platforming stages, but it also offers a couple of mazes, some side-scrolling stages where you automatically run forward, and two varieties of mini games, sliding puzzles and these marble mazes that, thankfully, don’t require motion controls to tilt. (The marble mazes were easily my least favorite part of the game, as controlling the ball was quite bothersome, and the whole maze tilts, which is very disorienting.)
Whether the stage happens to be 2D or 3D, you always have four pages to collect. These pages can be obtained by:
- Finishing the stage
- Finding the Hidden Page
- Collecting five letters to spell LUCKY
- Collect 300 coins (aside from the auto-run stages, there’s always more than enough)
While you’ll have plenty to do in each colorful level, your task will never be a particularly difficult one. This game is very easy, and the difficulty never really seems to increase. The only challenge I can recall was collecting enough coins in Dungeon Run, the first stage that forces you to run forward automatically. I couldn’t even find tips online because the stage was set up differently in the videos I was watching! (Perhaps the subsequent update fixed this?) I also found some of the later boss fights to be mildly challenging due to the sheer number of projectiles I had to avoid. Other than that, this game is great if you’re looking for a casual platforming experience, but not so much if you want a challenge.
Before I end this review, I do have a few issues that need to be addressed. I played the game on the Switch, and the action would sometimes freeze up for a split second. It never affected my gameplay, but it was a noticeable and semi-frequent occurrence. The loading screens are also very long, and if you miss any items, you have to more or less repeat the whole level. While this might make sense in the 2D stages, it makes less sense for the open ones. Fortunately, the only time I missed something was when I bypassed a single letter in the game’s very first stage. Even so, this required me to collect all the golem heads over again just to save my progress for that one missing item, which just seems silly and unnecessary. You also can’t seem to skip dialogue or scenes, making repeating a level even more of a nuisance.
As long as you’re fine with a platformer that isn’t really going to challenge you, then you’ve still got a game that is bursting with charm. The graphics are colorful, the music is catchy, and I really enjoyed the characters and their entertaining, gibberish way of speaking. And in case you’ve gotten a bit tired of collectathons that seem to make you gather up items merely for the sake of it, the coins in this game actually serve a purpose beyond simply earning you a page. In a manner similar to Super Mario Odyssey, you can spend those accumulated coins on a whole variety of cute outfits for Lucky to wear during his journey!
Normally $29.99, I’ve seen New Super Lucky’s Tale go on sale for $9.89, which isn’t bad for a game spanning 6-10 hours. If you’re interested, the game is available on all major consoles and PC.