If you’re here looking for the quick fix of a sloth-like guppy and adorable cat sounds, you’ve clicked into the right review. Ladies and gents, I give you the punctuationally-unwieldy (a stop: then excitment! then 2) reflex-tester Guppy: Collects! 2 (80 MSP).
It’s a type popular on handhelds and phones with touch screens, and the quality varies wildly from time-waster to legitimately-addicting. Conscious of that limited gameplay, music is playing a bigger role, as are storylines(!?). It’s seeing a revival of sorts as far as interest from me; I’m eager to try out Rhythm Thief and Theatrhythm: Final Fantasy on the 3DS, which is two more than what was on my to-do list this time last year.
Guppy: Collects! 2 doesn’t throw any Hail Mary passes or take any risks though. The music is good, but it’s not about the rhythm. It’s a rank and file reflex game— think speed inputting, reading skills are a definite plus. It’s also a sequel, supposedly. I can’t find the original or any trace of it from developer Ho-Hum Games. Unless it ratted someone out to the Feds, relocated to Alaska and changed its name, it’s like it never existed. (Edit: The developer has since informed me that Guppy’s origins must remain secret for now.)
Guppy likes to collect everything along a set line, and in a few locales, such as a supermarket and a cemetery. I’m not sure why. Guppy don’t say. I guess it’s sort of like Katamari but without the bizarre plot and growing spurts. The gameplay is simplistic. There’s combinations of buttons and pad directions over each item. Complete the corresponding instructions and repeat. And repeat. And repeat. You have a ticking clock to keep you moving, and four mistakes as lives (with the cats, shouldn’t it be nine apiece, times three, for twenty-seven?) to gamble with. The controls governing this are pretty tight, so any mistakes made will be your own instead of bad input or the timing being off.
In addition to local highscores, there’s outfits awarded periodically for Guppy, but they’re equipped randomly from stage to stage. To its benefit, the game does prod you into having another go at it for a little while, but it’s not a deep adventure. I saw all the backgrounds, heard all the music, and unlocked every alternate costume (a total of 26) in under half an hour. Not a minute of it was boring, mind you, but there’s nothing else holding your interest afterward aside from besting previous scores.
I’ve been noncommittal lately, and that extends to Guppy: Collects! 2. I didn’t feel like the dollar or my time was wasted. I wasn’t exactly left with any sense of terrific worth, either. Adrenaline junkies and cat enthusiasts (they go hand-in-hand, you know) will find more here to like, methinks.