Super Meat Boy Forever Review

The original Super Meat Boy released to great commercial success in 2010 and was recognized as one of the best 2d platformers of all time. Although it can be very difficult, the first game is considered by some players as a masterpiece and it has inspired many other platformers over the past ten years. Now, the series returns with Super Meat Boy Forever.

With such a long break between entries and such a long development period, many fans wondered if a follow-up could live up to the greatness of the original. Unfortunately, while Super Meat Boy Forever doesn’t reach the same level, the game isn’t without its merits, either.

On top of that, Super Meat Boy Forever shares much of its identity with the 2010 original. The graphics and music are almost identical, which is a very good thing. The cartoonish visuals are simple, yet visually appealing and give them a very similar Saturday morning feel (albeit more violent and scary). The art style almost has a Newgrounds flash game-type vibe to it, which isn’t a bad thing. And as far as cartoon visuals go, Forever’s cut scenes are some of the biggest stand-outs.

The story of the game is simple, with Dr. Fetus returns to kidnap Meat Boy and Bandage Girl’s son, sending the parents on a quest to claim it. The game features some lovable characters, with many new ones introduced as well. But unfortunately, beautiful visuals, colorful characters, and a fun story aren’t enough to save Super Meat Boy Forever.

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meat boy in a tear

The biggest change made to Forever from the original game is in its game design. Whereas the original title featured hand-crafted level design to offer challenging yet rewarding gameplay, the sequel consists of randomly generated levels. The title Forever refers to the seemingly endless amount of levels, but the quality is unlikely to encourage repeated playthroughs.

This is made worse by the fact that the game no longer plays like a regular platformer, and instead an auto-runner. There are plenty of great auto-runners out there, from Runner 3 to the Rayman mobile games, but unfortunately for Forever, this change from traditional platformer to auto-runner feels like a huge downgrade. By removing the player’s freedom of movement, many of the platforming challenges featured throughout the game feel difficult but in all the wrong ways, as much of the control is taken away from the player. While surely some of the fans of the original game may enjoy this change in gameplay, it is such a drastic change that it changes the identity of the sequel.

One saving grace is that the game gives players checkpoints after each segment of each level, meaning players don’t have to start over the entire stage if they keep dying over and over at a certain obstacle. . This is appreciated, though it still doesn’t change the fact that the game’s platforming is incredibly frustrating, and often lacks fun.

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With all that said, Super Meat Boy Forever can still be a fun game at times. The game’s boss battles, which aren’t automatically generated, each have their own level of personality and charm, and will take some work to beat. And because of their hand-crafted nature, all the boss battles flow very well and are really fun to play. The boss fights show that, if the developers had taken the same approach to the rest of the game, Forever could have been a better game overall.

While Super Meat Boy is arguably one of the best modern 2d platformers, the same cannot be said of Super Meat Boy Forever. The game leaves behind much of the identity of the original to try and offer players endless replay value with a more bare-bones gameplay style. But rather than a game that encourages repeated playthroughs, Super Meat Boy Forever is more fun to watch than actually play.

Super Meat Boy Forever is available now for PC and Nintendo Switch, with future versions for PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, and mobile launching later this year. Today Technology was provided with a Switch code for this review.

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