The unpredictability of gaming trends can be likened to racehorse betting; like the quality of a game, you can easily see which horses are strong and well built, but there is never a guarantee that they’ll win the race. Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout is an unlikely champion, with its seemingly childish and bright colors that may initially deter gamers of grittier games. Underneath the misleading facade, however, is a game that welcomes all, inviting both challenge and fun as you climb your way to victory.
Released on August 4, Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout is a platformer battle royale developed by Mediatonic and published by Developer Digital, where 60 players compete in a gameshow-like manner for a crown in various individual and team mini-games. With each game, the number of players are whittled down as they are eliminated by obstacles or other players. The quirky ragdoll mechanics of each player’s bean-shaped avatar renders the character difficult to control, leaving room for players to develop skills while still incorporating randomness and surprise into the game. Fall Guys features 25 different mini-games of varying difficulties, with my personal favorite ones being Hex-A-Gone — where players try to last the longest on layers of disappearing hexagonal tiles — and Block Party — an in-game version of human tetris, or “Brain Wall.”
With each win, players can receive ‘crowns,’ an in-game currency that can be spent on cosmetics, which are ranked from common to legendary. The other currency, ‘kudos,’ can be earnt from leveling up. Thus, the more you play, the better you can colorfully customize your avatar.
Clumsy yet competitive, casual yet intense, Fall Guys is a wonderful new rendition of the battle royale genre, which many thought was running stale after the domination of games like Fortnite, Apex Legends and Call of Duty: Warzone. It is a breath of fresh air, and is without a doubt extremely fun.
Despite its brilliance, Fall Guys can become quite repetitive after a while. Unlike other games in the same genre, Fall Guys is more enjoyable with friends; playing it alone oftentimes feels like reading a good joke but having no one to share it with. Even though there are 25 mini-games, some are limited to later rounds to ensure less randomness when competing for the crown. As a result, you may be playing the same mini-game several times at the start of each match, especially if you tend to get eliminated early on.
But worry not, for the developers of the game have already announced in a recent video that a second season of Fall Guys will be arriving soon in October, with a brand new medieval theme bringing new mini-games and cosmetics. With this kind of well-planned, methodical approach to an already polished game, it’s no wonder that Fall Guys made such a huge splash on the video game streaming platform Twitch — and from the looks of what’s next, it’s going to be around for quite some time.
Brian Lu is a sophomore in the College of Arts and Sciences. He currently serves as Assistant Arts Editor on The Sun’s board. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.