Bugsnax | PS5 Review.

Monday 7 December 2020

Publisher: Young Horses & Fangamer
Developer: Young Horses
PS5 Review

I'm very excited that my first PS5 review is for Bugsnax, why am I excited? Well because this game was so far off my radar and looked like something I wouldn't enjoy that I couldn't imagine ever playing it but here we are. Bugsnax looks far from a fame for an adult audience at first but the more you play the more you realise that it's a little sinister and evil, you convince your boss to let you find missing. On the surface Bugsnax looks like a typical kids game but underneath the exterior it's much more than that, it has elements of puzzles, exploring and a main story with side quests that lead you down an unexpected path which made me feel kind of sad.

You play as a creature called Grumpus who visits Snaktooth island, you have convinced your boss to let you travel there in the hope that's you will find and get to interview the disgraced explorer Elizabert but when you reach the island she is nowhere to be seen, this is when you use your journalism skills to find out everything the residents know in order to narrow down her whereabouts. In order to do this I was given some utterly ridiculous tasks and watched in horror as the residents munch on the cutest snacks I had ever seen whilst they were alive! once they eat these creatures a body part will be replaced by what ever food the creature was, this is when I learned pretty early on that even though these snacks are delicious they're most likely doing more harm than good to the Grumpus' bodies.

Even though your main goal is to find Elizabert there is another clear goal to help you achieve this, when you first reach the island you meet a Grumpus called Filbert, he is out of sorts and doesn't know what to do and asks for your help to bring the residents back to Snaktooth, he has been on his own every since they parted ways and hasn't been able to convince them to come back, as I mentioned before the residents ask you to do tasks and you will need to complete these not only to find out information on Elizabert but also to convince them to come back to Snaktooth. The message behind this game is very clear and I feel it can teach anyone about helping one another and how to come together as a community and work together as a team, sometimes we can lose sight of that and just need a reminder of why it's important as well as a nudge in the right direction. 

One thing you need to remember is that Bugsnax comes from the same developers as Octodad so it's very over the top and out there, their take on games is from such an outlandish perspective that it draws you in and intrigues you enough to find out what the outcome will be. Bugsnax seems more for kids over the age of 8 due to the puzzles, problem solving is a huge part of the game and I did struggle on parts whilst trying to work out the best way to catch certain Bugsnax, once I knew how it was full steam ahead in capturing what I needed to progress. You will need to unlock parts of the map by completing tasks, once you do make sure you can and take photos of every bugsnak you come across so the data is logged and it's easier for you to find where on the map they are and what sauce you need to catch them.

Bugsnax are the most creative part of the game, the names to go along with them made me chuckle but the thing that stood out to me was their adorable little voices, I kept going back to the woods in order to listen to the Charmellows, they were basically smores who loved peanut butter, it pained me to feed them to the grumpus. Talking of sauces the developers really thought out of the box with them, there are 6 different ones to use and they grow randomly, luckily when you run out you can just pop back to town where Wambus will be growing them, I stocked up and made my way back to my destination to work out the best way to use the sauce's to catch the bug's, some took me a while but others were simple to catch. 

The more I played the more I realised how much I loved the game, yes, even down to the graphics, there was something remarkably intriguing under the surface and I needed to get to the bottom of it, each character I come across had a different personality trait and even though some clashed it made the community fit together like one big family. Out of the all the characters, there was only one Grumpus I felt stood out to me and that was Gramble, he just wanted to train and be friends with the Bugsnax and for his fella island dwellers to do the same but unfortunately they were too greedy for that and only cared about filling their tummies with these adorable creatures. 

Grump Characters:
  • Gramble
  • Wambus
  • Beffica
  • Chandlo
  • Eggabell
  • Triffany
  • Snorpy
  • Clumby
  • Filbo
  • Wiggle
  • Floofty
  • Cromdo
  • Shelda
  • Elizabert

The cleverly constructed traps you use to catch Bugsnax are available throughout different parts of the game, making it your mission to try and catch every bugsnak will result in a trophy and help you fill up your inventory, I filled up most of mine and was pleasantly surprised to find out I could go back through the game to get them all without having to start over again. Although we focus on catching bugs don't shy away from the characters personalities and how the disappearance of Elizabert has affected the gang, they may have ridiculous names and act a little over the top but their hearts are in the right place you just need to help them understand that this situation isn't just about them. 

For the people saying that this doesn't look like their type of game please bear in mind I had the exact same mind set and the further I progressed the deeper I got into the story, I was so engrossed that I needed to finish this game before any other PS5 games just so I could find out where Elizabert was and issues she was dealing with so if you want a short, fun puzzle game to play I recommend giving Bugsnax a try, 


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