A Sour Patch Kid’s life is simple. Like any other candy, they just want to be eaten, that is it. Sadly, not all of them get this opportunity. What happens to those Sour Patch Kids that don’t wind up in the something’s mouth? World Gone Sour shows you this darker side of candy in the form of an Xbox Live Arcade and PSN title. I have to clue you in that this is not a kids’ game. Yeah, it is a game about sugary candy but it has some pretty adult things in it. Everything from Method Man talking about penis pumps to the narrator cursing during cut scenes.
The game stars a green Sour Patch Kid as the main character. You, like so many other Sour Patch Kids, were not eaten but instead lost on the ground. You seem to have kept your cool as you venture through each of the game’s levels, heading towards your final goal of being eaten. The levels of the title vary greatly, from a Movie Theater to a Freezer to a Tool Shed. Along the way, you save other Sour Patch Kids that have been stranded in the dark depths of the world. You also collect star pieces to increase your score and gum drops to increase your number of lives.
The game arms you with the power to jump, throw, bowl and to grow. The latter is only usable when you have a certain amount of the aforementioned Sour Patch Kids that you save following you. You are able to grow twice and when you do you are able to take one more hit for each time you grow. Along with the increased “health” you also unlock the ability to ground pound. You must utilize this ability wisely as you venture through each course.
Along your way, you will run into different enemies that will try to stop you. Some of the enemies are killable, but some are not. The ones that you can defeat are normally sentient gum wads. You kill them in the same way Mario did, by jumping onto their heads. Some of the enemies are armored and you will have to either bowl one of your followers at them then jump or jump on them twice to defeat them depending on what armor they have. There are also a few other enemies that you can take out like Batteries, Bomb-dropping birds and Dust Bunnies.
Throughout the levels, there are light switches and buttons that you will have to use your buddies to activate. To do this, you have to aim them at the switches and throw them at them. The switches do everything from opening doors to activating special “red star” areas in which you collect red star pieces which can really give a boost to your score. Throwing your allies can also be used to daze certain enemies and also to obtain items.
On all of the courses there are environmental hazards. These range from Mouse Traps to Spikes to Liquids that will drown you and much more. On the more comical side, you actually get a better score on the level depending on how many different ways you, or your comrades, die.
Every 3 or 4 levels there is a boss fight. Surprisingly, the fights are not the same over and over again. The bosses are actually very varied and will present a unique challenge each time. I won’t lie, the boss fights had me at the edge of my seat while I was trying my hardest not to suffer brutal, candy death. The boss fights are definitely one of the standout parts of this title.
The narration is easily one of the best parts of this title. Creed Bratton (who plays Creed on The Office) gives this game a good helping of humor. While the game is humorous on its own, the narration pushes it even higher. Throughout the first level there is tons of narration, the rest of the levels don’t have as much talking but it is still there. There are also cut scenes throughout the game that are pretty damn funny as well, they even go as far as calling one of the Boss Fight Sour Patch Kids “bat shit crazy.”
Sadly, not everything about this game is great. One of the biggest things that plagues this title is the awful load times. The levels seem to take forever to load. Along with this, the game suffers from the same problem a handful of other XBLA/PSN games have, lack of online co-op. There is local co-op but not being able to play this game with my online buddies is a negative. That said, the co-op doesn’t drastically change the game or anything, but online would have been a nice option to have.
World Gone Sour is definitely one of the strangest titles I have played this year. I was happily surprised by how well this game, that on the surface seems to just be a product pusher, was made. The 13 levels in it leave you wanting more, but in a good way. The game feels complete, don’t get me wrong, but at the end of it I also had a desire to play even more. The level design is very good as your traverse the different terrains and the platforming has no major flaws. Not to mention the Method Man music video you unlock while playing which just so happens to be one of the funniest songs/music videos I’ve seen in a long time. Yes, the load times and lack of online co-op hurt the title but not enough to pass it over. With its small price tag, there is no reason not to pick up this title.
- Very good level design
- Narration is hilarious
- Controls work very well
- Method Man’s music video
- Bad load times
- Lack of online Co-Op