Papa Louie 3: When Sundaes Attack
I'm not big on large bodies of water at the best of times, but even in my most dramatic moments (of which there are many), when I think of things that could go wrong on a cruise, "Entire ship and passengers getting sucked into an alternate dimension by vengeful frozen desserts" somehow never made the list, and yet that's exactly what's befallen everyone in Flipline Studios' action-packed platformer Papa Louie 3: When Sundaes Attack. You begin the game as the ship's captain, determined to rescue the other people, presumably because "lost all crew and passengers in an alternate dimension" doesn't look real good on a resume, and you're going to need to get your hands dirty to do it. Use [WASD] or the [arrow] keys to move, jump, and swim, while tapping [spacebar] attacks, though the controls are completely customiseable from the pause menu. Each area is filled with coins and more to collect and baddies to wallop, and though some itty-bitty enemies can be taken down with a single whack, others will need more to bring them down. Each customer you rescue is then unlocked to play as, and since they all have their own different abilities, replaying levels as someone else can help you unlock new areas or reach something you previously couldn't!
I found myself laughing a little while I played Papa Louie 3, not because it was necessarily funny, but because as a child of the Atari/NES era, getting something this polished and expansive for free is still a little ridiculous to me. While figuring out what's scenery and what's a platform, as well as which of the wildlife is harmful to the touch, is initially trial-and-error, Papa Louie 3 is a beautiful little game. Its design is so creative and colourful, and the levels are so big and diverse, that it feels light and cheerful in a way that calls to mind classic console platformers like Donkey Kong Country. The controls are responsive, apart from a bit of sluggishness when trying to change direction midjump, and the impressive amount of unlockable characters, costumes, and challenges helps take some of the sting out of needing to replay the levels so much to get %100 completion. It's still not exactly reinventing the wheel when it comes to gameplay mechanics, but there's a lot to be said for the clear amount of passion and attention to detail Flipline Studios clearly put into making a platformer that's solid as a rock. If you love Flipline Studios, you know they never do anything halfway, and Papa Louie 3: When Sundaes Attack is a fun, vibrant platformer for just about anyone who loves old school gameplay with a decidedly modern style.
Play Papa Louie 3: When Sundaes Attack