Sun. May 19th, 2024

[Review] Professor Lupo: Ocean – Nintendo Switch

By Elly Oak Feb12,2021
Developed and Published By: BeautiFun Games
Categories: Puzzle
Release Date: 12.28.20

I don’t often play puzzle games that make me feel dumb, but boy oh boy does Professor Lupo: Ocean make me feel lacking at times.

You awaken in a space ship at the bottom of the sea, everything is so unknown to you, even your name, but you take to the title Clone anyway. The ship is in ruins and water is everywhere, it’s in your best interest to figure things out and escape. The goal is always to get from one end of the level to the other. It sounds easy, but very soon does the game prove it isn’t. It’s all about pressing switches to open and close latches and maneuvering around the dangers that surround you. One of the first things the game shows off is that you need to plan things out very carefully. Open a latch to let water out and you’ll get pulled away by it…sometimes to your death, which in Ocean are surprisingly gruesome and bloody. As the story goes on, you do learn more, but deeper lore is inside of files you can pick up in each stage. If stages were already challenging, getting the files raises it to another level and you’ll definitely have to think out of the box to get them.

While the stage layout makes it obvious stages are made with a tile format, the game has a great look to it. The environment looks appropriately desolate and dangerous to stay in. The creatures you come across seem harmless out of water, but quickly change the moment you’re in it. I like the style the character designer took. It’s appealing, but not too cute to seem saccharine or annoying. Speaking of the characters however, is the voice acting. There’s a lot of it, the game is almost completely voiced, and it’s all fantastic.

As mentioned before, Ocean is a hard game. Luckily, the concept of lives is non-existent. You die, you just start over. While this can be frustrating if you’re almost done with a stage, the next time you’ll know exactly what to do. If you miss the optional files, no biggie. You can replay any stage after you’ve played it from the title screen. I had to skip a lot of files in my first run through stages, so the collector in me had to replay the stages to get everything. In a game like this, having lives and Game Overs would be torture and make the game an unfun slog. But without them, it makes the game into a learning experience each stage you play.

It’s nice to see puzzle games that aren’t just number games or competitive block movers. Especially ones with a great wrapper. With Ocean being a sequel or rather epilogue to the previous Professor Lupo game “Professor Lupo and his Horrible Pets”, it’s made me want to play that original game, which I think any sequel should strive to do.

4/5

Buy Now: $4.99

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*Game Download Code supplied for review purposes

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