Mekazoo Hits Home With Tag-Team Platforming

| 5 Mar 2015 09:00

Mekazoo is a frantic, 2D, tag-team platformer fully realized in a 3D environment.

Mekazoo from GoodMoodCreators isn't novel because it's a 2D platformer in a 3D world, and the reason it's fun is not because you get to play as, among other things, a wallaby, although that certainly helps! Mekazoo is a game to watch because it seems to pull elements from a variety of classic games, has a gorgeous modern art style, and has you tag-teaming with yourself as a frog, armadillo, wallaby, and more. It's also delightfully simple to play, harkening back to the NES days when you literally only had two buttons to work with.

Other than movement, you only ever need two buttons; one to tag out with your other animal friend, and one to use your active animal's ability. The frog will use his tongue to knock out enemies and swing around on platforms. The armadillo can curl up and activate a speed boost very much akin to Sonic's signature move. The wallaby, as you might expect, jumps. There are two more to come, but that's all I got to tinker with at GDC.

The tricky part about Mekazoo - and it can get incredibly tricky at points - is that you'll need to be switching back and forth between animals constantly. Very few segments are passable using only one of the animals. Whether there's a jump that only the wallaby can make, or a ramp that the armadillo needs to scoot itself up, you will not be able to get far without first mastering speedily switching characters. Frequently, you'll need to do something like hop high with the wallaby, switch to the frog mid-air, and grab a platform with your tongue to move forward. It's not rocket science, but it takes a bit of practice to get the hang of.

Despite the fact that the build I saw was a fairly early version of the game, the demo was well polished, and I didn't encounter any issues at all. Given the fact that they're planning to continue development until the planned release in Q4 2015, it's great to know how far along they already are. It's currently planned for cross-platform release on PC, PS4, and Xbox One.

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