In what turned out to be the very last game I played at E3 2019, Supermarket Shriek is one of those games that sounds both insane in concept and yet is incredibly fun to play. The gameplay is simple: navigate a shopping cart containing a shrieking goat and a shrieking human through a themed maze filled with obstacles and traps until you get to the exit. There are many different stages to experience, and each stage is timed. If you choose to play with a controller, you use the left trigger to make the human scream (turning the shopping cart one way), the right trigger to make the goat scream (turning the cart the other direction), and both triggers at once to move in the direction you’re facing. There are thirty-two different levels to play, secret parody levels, hats, and more to experience in this ID@Xbox title.
However, there is another way to play Supermarket Shriek: screaming with a friend into separate microphones in co-op mode to move the cart by each of you controlling the human or the goat. And this is where the game became my favorite experience of E3 2019 and one of the biggest standout moments overall for me across the past four years I’ve been attending. I played with Mariana Ayres (@marihanakah / Instagram) as my partner, and we each took a headset to use. Quickly, we found ourselves both shouting loudly into the microphone and planning together to navigate the traps, stay on the course without falling off either side, and ultimately make it to the end of that supermarket-themed stage.
With voice controls, each player’s scream is assigned to turn the cart in one direction, and both players have to shout in unison to move the cart forward. This meant that both myself and Mariana would have to shout loudly and in sync in order to navigate the course, while starting and stopping as necessary to snake our way through some of the trickier spots. While playing, Mariana and I managed to draw a small crowd, be heard across the Xbox demo area, and pull the game’s director, William Barr, out of seclusion while working on the game’s next patch to witness us playing as (at least I) went slightly hoarse by the end. Supermarket Shriek‘s co-op gameplay mode worked extremely well, even though both me and Mariana had not met previously, and we conquered the level after a couple failed attempts.
Supermarket Shriek is a game that controls well if you play with a controller, has suitably cartoony graphics, and has an amazing concept with a gameplay control option that is both a gimmick and makes this ID@Xbox title standout among the indie crowd. Unlike some other co-op games, Supermarket Shriek was clearly designed in such a way that voice-controlled co-op felt like it was intended as a completely viable way to play instead of a tacked-on experience like the campaign mode for the original Titanfall or the multiplayer mode in Dead Space 2. If you can pick up one ID@Xbox title to play with a friend or significant other who is into gaming -or even if that person is not- Supermarket Shriek is one of those games that is incredibly unique, fun, and just works.
Supermarket Shriek is out now for Xbox One and PC and is also available as part of the Xbox Game Pass.
What do you think of a voice-controlled game? Who would you like to play Supermarket Shriek with?
Let us know in the comments below!