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Super Meat Boy

Reviewed by on Oct 21, 2010
Screenshot of Super Meat Boy

I don’t want to be that one guy who rains on the Super Meat Boy parade, but I’m not impressed. It isn’t the difficulty that puts me off, either. I love a good bitch-slapping from 2D platformers like N+. The controls, however, feel cheap. Meat Boy doesn’t gain momentum. He’s stuck on full speed, and his jump arcs like he’s hitting his head on an invisible ceiling every time. The bonus characters help alleviate some of my frustrations with the controls, but the levels were designed with Meat Boy’s skills in mind, so you have to play as him the majority of the time. Controlling Meat Boy requires so much precision and snapping the analog stick back and forth, though, that it physically hurts my thumb to play. I know the game is an homage (and parody) of classic gaming, but sometimes it’s classic to a fault. Looking at N+ again, the controls there felt so much more modern. Plus, you got four-player co-op and a level editor, which Super Meat Boy lacks and yet wants to charge 1200 MS points once the launch sale is over. So it’s a step backwards for more money? Whaaaaaaat?

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Responses to Super Meat Boy
  1. avatar
    JR on Oct 21, 2010
    I was so excited for this, but the demo didn't sit well. glad I didn't buy.
  2. avatar
    Setaimx on Oct 22, 2010
    Meat Boy doesn't gain any momentum? That IS strange, considering that it's supposed to be like N+. I might rethink buying this based on hearing about the controls.

    Great review, Clark.
  3. avatar
    Clark on Oct 22, 2010
    I wasn't all that thrilled by the demo, either, but I bought it, anyway, mostly on the principle that the launch sale was such a great idea.

    I'd still give the demo a try, Setaimx, but if you already have N+, you probably won't like what you see.

    For those who do have the game, though, I should warn you that collecting the bandages can mess up your save file. I lost about an hour's worth of playtime because of this glitch that needs to be fixed ASAP!
  4. avatar
    John on Oct 27, 2010
    I hate the fact that this game is getting so much undeserved hype. Im honestly sick of subpar games getting a free pass in this market because of some ridiculous hype machine. There's nothing spectacular about it, period... let alone being the "best DL game of the summer" as many are claiming.
  5. avatar
    Clark on Oct 27, 2010
    John, did you make the mistake of buying it, too? I forced myself to beat the game and unlock some of the bonus characters to get my money's worth, but I just don't care for Super Meat Boy and REALLY don't like the controls everyone else keeps saying are "spot on" and "perfect."

    I think people are rating this so highly for two reasons. One, they haven't played a traditional platformer in a long time and are happy to finally have something 2D. Secondly, they don't want to hurt an indie developer's feelings. Seems like indie developers always get special consideration.
  6. avatar
    John on Oct 28, 2010
    I didn't buy it, but I certainly would have been more peeved had I done so. I received mine from a contest on a review site. I won it expecting it to be awesome, 1 hr later I wished it had gone to somebody else that would have actually enjoyed it.

    Indie Developers definitely need the recognition as they are the future of console gaming, but reviewers are honestly going about it in the wrong way. Part of the problem is that reviewers want to continue receiving freebies, so they aren't nearly as harsh as they should be. It's one reason, although I dont always agree with them, I respect Edge Magazine most of the time.

    Then again, we've also got developers who accuse reviewers who speak negatively of their product of not even playing their product.
  7. avatar
    Clark on Oct 28, 2010
    I like what indie developers bring to the industry. That's why I'm always encouraging people to download XBLIG games. But reviewers should be honest and not write with the intent to give an indie developer some positive buzz, which I feel is often the case. A bad game is still a bad game, no matter who made it.

    I totally agree, though, that professional game journalists get way too many freebies. If I got some of the cool stuff they got, I may be more inclined to rate a game favorably, too. Isn't a free copy good enough?

    Reminds me of Game Revolution's Stranglehold review. Every other gaming site loved the game, but GR gave it a C-. In the review, Duke linked to a picture of some of the swag he got from the publisher (cigarette lighters that looked like pistols). Guess it didn't buy him off like it was supposed to! Here's the link:

    And you're right, it's not exactly fair for reviewers to rate a game before they've played the whole thing. I'll admit that I'm guilty of this, too, but in my defense, you can get a pretty good feel for a game before it's over. In most cases, games actually get worse the more you play, not better, because the difficulty spike multiplies whatever other issues the game has.
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