In a world where couch multiplayer is becoming a rarity, Lunch-A-Palooza breaks the mould and enters the fray with 4 player single screen multiplayer brawling.
The premise is simple, you are sentient food and your goal is to knock the other players off the table to score points or retain your lives.
It is very rare that you can jump into a game and instantly know how to play it. There are 4 basic moves; Jump, attack, grab and a charged attack. You are food and can select from 4 characters at the start and each have their own special attacks. Certain fighters are better suited to certain modes, but you will find your favourite.
There is a classic brawl mode (Main course), a king of the hill style mode (King of the Cloche), 2v2 (Side dish) and a ‘Royal buffet’ where you respawn as a different character.
As mentioned before, the gameplay is very simple and what makes it worse is the physics are unpredictable. Some attacks will send an opponent flying, and at other times it will barely scathe them. Sometimes you are launched sideways and other times in the air. There is no finesse in the controls, so every bout ends in a lucky win.
The power ups try to make it interesting, but most seemingly do nothing and the only one that does is the GMO growth one, but even if you stack multiples and grow 3x bigger, the other players can somehow send you flying regardless.
Possibly the best thing about this game are the inventive stages, some even move and evolve as time goes by with interesting hazards and the more you play, the more you unlock. From characters to stages, however there isn’t quite enough to keep you going. All the unlocks happen fairly fast, likely because the developers knew you wouldn’t remain interested for much longer.
Visually this game isn’t supposed to be high fidelity, it picks an art style and runs with it. Very cartoony and simple. So you’d expect the framerate to remain solid throughout, but when you adjust the game settings to add more items and especially on the Airplane stage I experienced single digit frame rates, it was a slideshow. Unacceptable in 2020.
Many times a game can change your mind the more you play it. You learn the nuances and the depth, however there really isn’t much here. It is fun for a few minutes and likely good when you have a group of friends. It reminded me of a PS2 game, one you’d let your younger brother play to keep him and his friends entertained with an ‘easy’ game.
- Replay Value