A Psychic Odyssey Through the Minds of Misfits, Monsters, and Madmen. This classic action/adventure platformer from acclaimed developers Double Fine Productions follows the story of a young psychic named Razputin.
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One of the greats. A triumph of creative level design, incredible art direction, and some of the funniest dialogue you'll ever hear in a video game - wickedly, and twistedly, hilarious and consistently has you in stiches from it's subversions of storytelling tropes to simple running gags that get more absurd as they continue onwards.
It also has an unexpected emotional depth that separates it from other platformers on the market, and the themes and ideas it tackles here are explored beautifully. As the game goes, it becomes more and more disturbed and disgusting but that's part of the charm here - a wonderfully lingering darkness that is Don Bluth in it's influence. Just an incredible gaming experience, timeless.
There are games I go into fully expecting to like or even love. I know that may be naive of me to think but I just get this wave of excitement booting up specific games thinking I'll fall in love instantly. With 'Psychonauts' I didn't fall for it immediately. I enjoyed the tutorial level that introduced the basic mechanics and was anticipating my love for the game to follow shortly after. But I kept waiting and waiting and waiting for that moment where everything just clicks, but to no avail. 'Psychonauts' still looks great today with such expressive character models and expert visual storytelling that surprised me a few times. That being said, I almost never enjoyed my time with the game. I found platforming to be sluggish with a lot of the gameplay surrounding it either being tedious or straight up not fun. The game throws so many ideas at you through the ability to enter peoples' minds. I always found this to be such a cool premise to explore unique gameplay ideas. But no matter how unique those gameplay ideas are they have to be fun to work, and sadly they never worked for me. All this doesn't mean I don't recommend 'Psychonauts'. It may have not gelled well with me but there is so much inventiveness here and fun writing that you may feel differently. It's a cult classic for a reason.
I love this game. while it may have gotten me a bit burned out I don't give a f**k cause I LOVE this game. from the story, to the Characters to the writing and the HUMOR and the SOUNDTRACK and the LEVEL DESIGN? ....Phew. AND THE INTRICACIES OF THE LEVELS ITSELF? ok I'm done. 10/10.
the most "2000s cartoon network" videogame ever made (probably). i cannot imagine this game being made today, it has such billy & mandy type of humor and when the conspiracy hits is just like, KND movie levels of nonsense and paranoia (zombies that are actually old people (everyone is afraid of old people, i guess?)). just real clever writing, with good timing for comedy while showing a lot of different mental illness and traumas with a bit of dark humor here and there, but never losing sensibility (not the same you would see in today's games like celeste, but still!! (and to be honest, this approach feels better for my tastes)). the main character, raz, is very well developed and his character arc is concluded in the most unexpected way. love the whole contextualization of "videogame things" into mind-things, i.e, your health bar being "mental health" and your power being medium powers (im surprised i've not seen a joke about bending spoons) and stuff you see in cold war media (btw, is this game happening in the 60s? 70s?). the gameplay being janky as it is and some levels being a little frustrating just helps with the comfy-yet-menacing vibes and the whole mean comedy it has. some of the levels are, by the way, one of the best i've ever seen in a videogame -- milkman's conspiracy is just such an engaging story and meat circus is at bowser's castle from super mario 64 level of "utilizing everything you've learned from the game" (while being a scout mission, too!). really like how the camp is a whole place and not a mini HUB -- love when games with levels have a way of locomotion between them, makes the world feels more real and is crazy the amount of, cough, "lore" it has -- hidden stories about the other kids in the camp or bizarre things that you may encounter soon but, until there, is just legend. the kids, by the way, really act like 10~13 years old kids: they are starting to fell in love with each other, talking about "making out" but still have both meanness and innocence a kid has -- you can see this in raz own character, like how he reacts to some of the adults problems while you can totally relate to them, but is still gentle and helps in the way he can.
is just. a really good game.
One of my favourite platformers ever. Some of the levels in here completely blew me away, wondering how people could be sleeping on a game with this quality of level design. The characters are bizarre and funny and the writing is on point. The physics are familiar and have aged extremely well.
I played on Xbox One, so the infamously disastrous design of the final level has thankfully been patched to a point where its now just challenging instead of borderline impossible.
Also the campground music is a meandering, dark country number and it works so well in creating that weird atmosphere.