Capsule Review: Super Meat Boy

A precision platformer with incredibly tight controls and jump physics. It feels really good to play - especially since the devs focused on stripping away frustration while still presenting a high level of challenge. There’s no limited lives (outside of a few bonus levels), respawn is instant, and the levels are small enough that the goal is always visible. At least, that’s how it starts. The levels get longer and longer and have multiple different kinds of challenges, but you still always respawn at the start of the level - meaning that the punishment and therefore frustration increase as you go. If the devs had stuck to their design goals, the game would be just about perfect. As it is, it’s merely very good.

I Stopped Playing When: After several hours of successively longer and harder levels, I hit a wall early in Chapter 5 (out of seven). It wasn’t the challenge that got me, but the punishment - the combination of the long levels with no checkpoints and the intense difficulty meant I spent a lot of time replaying early parts of a level just to get to the later part of the level and have another chance to practice whatever was killing me. At this point the game was more frustrating than satisfying, so I quit.

Docprof's Rating:

Four Stars: Great. Not only did I finish the game, I probably played through the whole thing again and/or completed any optional objectives. It's an easy recommendation for any genre fan.

You can get it or learn more here.