Fall Guys: Pure, Addicting Fun

September 4, 2020

“Fall Guys” suddenly popped up on my radar about a week ago. Everyone I knew was playing and had nothing but good things to say about it. It amazed me that what seemed to be a small indie game with a ridiculous name would garner such mainstream attention with, as far as I can tell, little marketing. As of this month, the game has attained multiplayer phenomenon status similar to popular hits like Fortnite, continuously making waves across Youtube and Twitch. So I thought, is the game really that good? Well, the answer is yes. It is that good. 

“Fall Guys” is what I would call a “wipeout royale” game, one where you play as these adorable humanoid jellybean creatures—the titular fall guys—and compete against 59 other players in a gauntlet of challenging stages until one winner prevails. Many of these stages are platforming obstacle courses that will surely remind you of the TV show “Wipeout”—moving platforms, colorful blocks and pillars and pitfalls galore. But unlike “Wipeout,” these stages are actually possible, thankfully, and players don’t take turns to go through a stage. Rather, they compete all at the same time, so you can imagine the absolute chaos and hilarious interactions that can occur. People can get trampled while trying to enter through doors and gates. They can be grabbed, blocked, and often pushed off of stages. Yes, you can grieve and sabotage other players to your heart’s content. The game encourages it. Moments like these are so ridiculous and spectacular that it’s highly entertaining even just to watch, especially given how goofy and cute the characters are. I think I need a fall guy plushie as soon as possible.

The controls are accessible by players of all skill levels. Aside from the standard movement keys, there is a jump, a dive forward, a grab and that’s it. However, using them effectively to make it through each stage does require a lot of skill and game knowledge. In fact, winning a game of “Fall Guys” is not easy at all. I’ve put ten hours into this game and I’ve only won once so far. This high demand of skill means that it can be immensely satisfying to be able to finish a stage before everyone else, but it also feels incredible to just barely get through a stage by the skin of your teeth. So no matter how good you might be at the game, you’ll enjoy it.

When you get to the final stage, the game can get extremely intense and sweaty. My favorite map is “Hexa-Gone,” where players must avoid falling down into a slime pit by traversing through layers of hexagon platforms that vanish shortly after they are stepped on. This level is the ultimate test of your mechanical skill to jump between platforms at the right time, as well as your decision-making skills. Do I play passive and deplete the platforms slowly, or do I go aggressive and try to use up the platforms as fast as I can, so that other players can’t use them? Should I jump down or should I stay above for now? How should I cut my opponents off? Everytime I lost, I felt like there was something I could’ve done better to avoid losing, that there was always room for improvement. So I just kept playing, despite not winning a whole lot. That is what makes “Fall Guys” so fun and addicting.

Combined with this engaging gameplay is a compelling progression system, which rewards you with stylish skins, colors, and patterns for your fall guy. There’s an in-game shop where a plethora of other such cosmetics are in rotation. You can buy them by spending a currency called Kudos, which you earn by playing the game, as well as crowns that you can get by winning games. This makes daily logins exciting and victory even sweeter than it already is. There are microtransaction options to buy Kudos and a few skins with real money, but they aren’t intrusive at all so I can give them a pass, for now. 

The only downsides to the game right now are the lack of custom game lobbies and rampant cheating. In fact, the chance of encountering cheaters seems to have gone up drastically over my few days of playing this game, so that now there is a cheater in every three games. This is a problem that’s inevitable for any popular game, and the developers have been actively working on implementing anti-cheat systems, so I have faith that this will improve very soon.

I haven’t had this much fun in a video game since the early Hearthstone days. I’ve been playing “Fall Guys” with friends for the past few days and I can’t get enough of it. When I’m not playing it, I’m watching videos of other people playing. This is an easy recommendation from me.

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