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I've been playing an awful lot of Fall Guys over the past week or so, and just like the vast majority of PlayStation 4 and PC owners who've been enjoying Mediatonic's colourful battle royale, I have some very strong opinions about it.
I love it, obviously. Fall Guys is undoubtedly one of the best games I've played this year, and I'm very excited for its future. But I also hate it. I hate it so damn much that sometimes it makes me so angry I become a stranger even to myself. Some of the many rounds the game throws out at you on your path to glory are, frankly, complete bollocks.
In the interests of getting some stuff off my chest and hopefully warning new players about the worst the game has to offer, I've ranked the rounds in Fall Guys from worst to best. Enjoy.
I mean, Perfect Match is just a complete and utter waste of everyone's time. This memory-based logic round requires you to stand still and remember the location of a piece of fruit before the other platforms disappear. That's it. Wow.
Even if you somehow forget where it is you're supposed to stand, you can just follow the majority of players to a safe spot and get through. It's very rare that more than three or four players are eliminated in this round, rendering it utterly pointless.
Team games can get in the bin. If I could speak to the idiots I seem to end up with every time I'm thrown into a game of Hoarders, I'd explain to them that running straight towards the balls will knock them away from where we need them to be. But I can't do that, so I'm stuck losing Hoarders consistently, forced to live out the same mistakes like a ghost with unfinished business on this Earthly plane.
My issues here are much the same as in Hoarders. The idea of working together to roll a ball up a hill is sound on paper, until your teammates either run straight up the hill to scrap with the other teams leaving you to push it on your own, or continually dive into the ball in an ill-advised attempt to make it roll faster. Stop doing that, people. It doesn't work. Seriously: stop it.
Nope, and nope again.
The start of a game of Egg Scramble is like watching footage of Americans tear into Walmart on Black Friday. The only difference is that the players here are beating each other for virtual eggs, instead of half-price toasters.
In other words, Egg Scramble is a mess. There's definitely some fun to be had in the chaos, but all too often things descend into a pointless scrum where you have no idea what or who you're grabbing at.
Don't think you can play me like this, Mediatonic. Don't think I can't see that Jinxed is nothing more than an ever-so-slightly different take on the Tail Tag. And I've made my feelings on that round quite clear: Nope.
Getting to the semi-final only to lose because it's Fall Ball is kind of like watching all your mates wrapping their arms around each other on Instagram despite the fact we're in the middle of a viral pandemic.
You can do everything in your power in this clumsy, football-inspired round, but eventually you'll be forced out as your hapless teammates score own goal after own goal.
Jumping through hoops to score points is pretty fun, but it's the team element that really lets things down again. With no way to communicate with your allies, you're constantly running towards the same hoops, meaning the win often boils down to sheer luck, and whether or not the constantly moving hoops actually land near where you are.
Tail games are lame. Having a tail game as a final round? Extra lame. Especially when you have the tail and another player seemingly manages to grab it despite being nowhere near you. I'm sure I didn't imagine that.
I'm ashamed of the words that come tumbling out of my mouth when I play See Saw. But there's nothing quite as infuriating as tumbling to your death because a bunch of fat jellybeans have jumped onto the same platform as you and knocked you onto your butt, leaving you to slide helplessly into the abyss.
Arguably the weakest of the survival rounds, Block Party isn't that difficult to survive... meaning it very rarely takes anyone out and needlessly pads out games.
Now we're getting into the games that I'm not mortified to see every time they come into rotation. Roll Out is just good-old fashioned survival fun on a perpetually rolling log packed with obstacles and pits to fall into. If you mess up, it's almost always on you.
Like Roll Out, Jump Club asks one thing and one thing only from those who seek to challenge it: Don't get clobbered by the massive swinging column, or you will fall to your death.
God help me, I love the cold and unpredictable whims of Fruit Chute. Running against an uphill conveyor belt is one thing, but attempting to avoid randomly falling pieces of giant fruit while doing so is a particularly cruel kind of genius.
A solid final round where you can win it all or lose it all in a matter of seconds. Run straight up and avoid all the obstacles, and you've most likely got it in the bag. Get hit even once, however, and you've almost no hope of coming back.
One real path to the finish line hides in a sea of fake platforms. Fall and you go back to the start. The result is a hilarious cluster of jellybeans gently attempting to nudge one another along the narrow path as they refuse to be the one to find out which next step is the way forward.
I mean, this one is just pure Takeshi's Castle, and I love it for that reason alone.
As you can probably tell, It's my firm belief that the obstacle course rounds are by far the best. Dizzy Heights is a neat little platforming challenge that combines rotating discs with a handful of hazards that can send you flying.
Gate Crash is all about timing and skill. Also, it's about making sure you don't get swept up in a crowd of 60 jellybeans all trying to get through the same gate at the same time, because that never ends well.
Another good old-fashioned obstacle course with narrow platforms, brutal wrecking balls that can throw you to your doom, and a one way turnstile system that can prove chaotic if you don't briefly work together with your opponents.
The best final round so far, and a super intense battle of platforming prowess and lightning fast decision making. Do you drop straight to the bottom and attempt to remove the entire final layer of platforms for an advantage, or stay up top, outlasting and outsmarting your enemies as the ways forward become more and more limited? The chaotic final moments in a round of Hex-A-Gone is Fall Guys at its very best.
The best part about The Whirligig is finishing in the top ten and then watching other players, usually newcomers, make all the mistakes you used to make. There's a real joy in watching a helpless jellybean get battled around by the various spinning bars before they finally drop to their deaths.
I know a lot of people that really hate Slime Climb. Not me. I maintain that it separates the wheat from the chaff, and favours the players who've really taken the time to learn the tricks and timings of its fiendish traps.
Unlike all of the other obstacle courses in the game, you pretty much have one shot to get up to the finish line in Slime Climb. From the moment you set off, you're chased uphill by a rising tide of pink goo that will instantly end your game if you fall into it.
The key is to take your time, let other players make mistakes, and focus on each obstacle at a time. It's maddening when you fail, but so damn rewarding when you succeed. A fitting ambassador for Fall Guys as a whole.
Featured Image Credit: Mediatonic
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