By Josh Speer / July 16th, 2020
I’m self aware enough to admit I’m a bit of a platformer addict. I just like the mixture of simple yet challenging gameplay with ever increasing complexity. And though I didn’t know much about Awesome Pea, I figured I’d take a chance on Awesome Pea 2. After all, I like retro inspired games, and this could have been released on the Game Boy, visually speaking. And while I still maintain the graphics are attractive after beating the game, there’s very little else that inspired me.
On the game’s Switch page, it says there’s 25 different stages, but I rolled credits after the 24th. That’s a big no no in my book. But it took a while before I realized that. At first, the gameplay is pretty fun. It’s basic, all Greedy Pea can do is jump and double jump. That’s it. No evasive maneuvers, not attacks, nada. Which isn’t a problem. I play lots of hardcore platformers, and am used to not being able to kill everything in my path. Thankfully, the controls work pretty well. Your goal is just to make it to the end of each stage in one piece, and preferably with all the gold collected. This is also fine, at least on a surface level. However, I’m of a mind that collectibles should serve a purpose, and sadly you can’t cash these coins in for anything. Hell, even unlocking a few hidden bonus levels would have been great. But alas, it’s just a straight run from level 1 to level 24, with no frills. I made an effort to collect every last coin, but it didn’t give me anything.
The longer Awesome Pea 2 goes, the more tedious it became for me. They reuse a lot of assets, and some levels are essentially clones of each other, with minor variances. There’s no arc for the difficulty to increase, no boss fights to punctuate things, it’s just static throughout. Sure, the game gets more difficult, but not in any meaningful way. They just add more flying skull enemies, buzz saws, bullets and the like. Keep in mind one hit instantly kills you, so every hazard is a major threat. And though I am actually very fond of the aesthetic style, it starts to get stale when your realize there’s only a small handful of stage types.
It’s no exaggeration that I managed to beat the game in a couple hours. I pretty much played it for an hour one night, and another hour the next day, and rolled credits. While there’s no real plot to speak of, at the end of the game Greedy Pea gets on a rocket ship and heads into space. I wish I could explain the meaning behind it, but really I doubt there’s much significance.
Awesome Pea 2 had many of the right elements to be a fun game, but ends up being very average. The controls work well enough, though I did have some minor issues with collision detection on occasion. And the artwork is actually pretty attractive, considering the inspiration. Most surprising is how catchy the music is, but even that can outstay its welcome and become annoying. I don’t think this is a horrible game, I just think it had the potential to be much better. But if you want a simple yet challenging platformer that never really goes anywhere, this might be more your cup of tea.
Awesome Pea 2Impressionsnintendo switchoprainfallPigeonDevplatformerSometimes You