June 21, 2018

E3 2018: Hands On with My Friend Pedro

When I had the chance to go hands on with My Friend Pedro, I was honestly not sure what to expect, I had heard of the game but had honestly never given it much attention, so hitting up the Devolver event and jumping into a trailer, with the games developer and began to learn.

If I left the demo with one thing, is that the crazier you play the more fun you will have, playing it safe, well it will get you to the end of the game, but it will keep you from enjoying it. What makes the game fun, is just how crazy it can get and when your guide is a floating, talking banana, that is to be expected, but it is not just that, the gameplay offers up a heck of a lot of challenge, purely from just the sheer number of ways you can approach things.

I had the chance to play the game with Victor, the sole developer on the game, outside of the music and after he left Media Molecule, he decided to work fulltime on My Friend Pedro, to which he already released a flash version of the game years ago. The flash release, in 2014 gave Victor the confidence to go all in on a full game, thanks to just how many people loved that release and in 2015, the development went full steam and in 2016, Devolver Digital got on board and with that support, the game is now on track for a release in 2019, for PC and Switch.

Getting into the game was simple, you would run with one stick and aim with the other, basic stuff, but it was when the Banana took you into his realm, the hub where you level up and such, where things got crazy. Here you are given the instructions on how to slow down time, which gives you more chances to land some shots, but also you are instructed on who to duel wield your weapons, something that helps you out greatly. Pressing down the left stick activates the bullet time effect, making you move a little faster than the rest, letting you get those shots in, without you taking too much damage.

But when you can jump through a window and have to target two enemies, while also avoiding a third and then landing, behind cover, you will be grateful for that slowdown option, it really helps you get through some of the trickier parts. Aiming at two different enemies is a little tricky, when you move your aiming reticule onto your target, you need to pull down and hold the left trigger, which locks it down, letting you move the reticule again, to target another enemy, with two targets you could just unload your guns. Getting the second gun going does take a little bit of skill, but once you have it down pat, you can get really creative, including adding in some ricochet shots.

If you find yourself in a situation where the number of bullets coming your way, clearly outnumbers you, you can bump the left shoulder button and dodge the bullets, usually by way of a small twirl. When you start to chain all that together, slow motion, double shots, dodging and jumping around, the game can get quite chaotic, it looks super impressive and when you manage to get some skill shots, even more so. I did make the comment to the developer that if the main character was dressed like Deadpool, it would be the perfect Deadpool game and he noted that I was not the first to state that.

The only real concern I had with the game, is that shooting and all that, seems to be all it offers, yes there are boss fights and some small environmental puzzles to solve, but the vast majority is just running and shooting and while that might be ok for a short game, My Friend Pedro seems to be going to a solid playtime and I don’t know how that will hold up in the long run. While my time with the game was limited, I enjoyed it and while it is not coming to release until next year, I can only hope the game gets expanded a little more, than what is currently on offer.

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