Guacamelee is the main example of what can happen when you combine indie games and the PS Vita, you can get an absolute masterpiece. After I had played Persona 4 Golden, I did not think I would end up rating any other Vita game so high again. However, DrinkBox studios has definitley changed that. DrinkBox had also created Mutant Blobs Attack for the Vita when the system first came out. Mutant Blobs Attack ended up being an amazing game as well, but DrinkBox has surely topped that game with Guacamelee.
Gameplay- 10/10 Guacamelee's gameplay starts off very simple and for some can even give the tone that the game may start to get repetitive, you can't even jump when you first get started. Soon though you gradually begin to gain different abilities as the game progresses. Soon enough you will be able to do all sorts of wild things, such as transform into a chicken or gain different powers to use throughout the game. The fighting in Guacamelee is extremely different than that of any other game I have seen before. It truly is extremely innovative, unique, and extremely fun. When fighting you may start off with a few simple punches, but then you can grab your enemies and knock them into each other to create combos. You can also use several combos you will learn throughout the game on your enemies. If you want you can even transform into a chicken and peck them all to death. I truly wish I could give the games fighting justice by words, but I simply can not. It is impossible to explain the pure uniqueness of the fighting mechanics in Guacamelee. Just know this, fighting in Guacamelee can and will get extremely addictive.
Guacamelee is a 2D platformer, and it is possibly the most fun one you will ever play. The platforming in guacamelee is just as amazing as the fighting. Guacamelee seperates itself from other platformers by implementing a crazy new feature. In the game you will be able to swap from the world of the living, to the world of the dead. So whenever fighting or platforming there are two worlds you will need to swap between. Some platforms, ledges, and enemies may not be in the same world as you. In order to use the platform, catch the ledge, or fight the enemy you will need to be in the same world as it. By the way enemies can hurt you no matter which world they are in. This feature adds a totally new element to the entire platforming genre.
Story- 10/10 In Guacamelee you play as Juan, an agave farmer who wants nothing more than to be a Luchador. But when El' Presidente's daughter is kidnapped in order to merge the land of the living with that of the dead you must fight to save her back. The story line is very great and really draws players in. I haven't expereienced a game that combines the gameplay mechanics and the story as well as Guacamelee does. Each compliments the other, and neither hender the other. Even with a game as silly as Guacamelee you still will find yourself falling in love with the characters and story. It is hard to imgaine that when you think about the type of game that Guacamelee is. Most games are either funny or dramatic, but somehow Guacamelee has managed to be a bit of both. This is just another reason why DrinkBox is able to make masterpieces that haven't been experienced before. All in all, you just won't find a story quite like Guacamelee's.
Controls- 10/10 The controls in Guacamelee, like the rest of the game, are top notch. The controls start off very simple, with buttons like X to jump and square to hit. As you progress through the game however you will start to gain new abilities, and combos. The many different button options never get confusing though. Guacamelee slowly introduces you to new moves, new abilities, and new combos in order to help you learn each of them before throwing a new one at you. This feature is very nice, rather than having all the abilities to start the game and having to hope you learn them all on your own. There is not much else to say about the controls, they are extremely easy to learn and are very well done.
Graphics- 10/10 In this case I am not neccassarily rating the graphics but the overall art style of Guacamelee. The game is just beautiful. The colors are very vibrant and really pop on the Vita's OLED screen. DrinkBox certainly made sure to make use of the screen, by using many bright colors. The PS3 version truly does pale in comparison to the Vita version of Guacamelee when it comes to the artstyle. There is just something about the Vita that makes the game look extremely amazing. In any case DrinkBox did a stellar job with the artstyle as well.
Special Thanks to DrinkBox Studios for the review code.