Stick It To The Man from Zoink Games was one of the first titles I reviewed here on PS4 Experts and, to this day, I still love it. When I heard about Flipping Death, a spiritual successor from the same studio, I knew I had to get my hands on it.
Flipping Death stars a new character named Penny who finds herself not only deceased, but the replacement for the grim reaper while he’s away on vacation. Hilarious premise? Check! Does this new title reach the same narrative and gameplay heights as the original? Let’s find out.
Some Big Shoes to Fill
Indie games like Flipping Death have brought new life to the PS4 over the last several years. Prior to the launch of this system, you would be hard-pressed to find wacky, weird, and zany games. Thankfully, developers like the folks at Zoink Games have been pioneers in the world of crazy and unique titles.
Flipping Death retains the same spirit of oddity and oddball humor that made Stick It To The Man such a fun romp. In this game we play as Penny who dies in a tragic accident. Upon arriving at the underworld, she is mistaken as the temporary replacement for the grim reaper himself.
Thrust into this new role, Penny is understandably confused and frustrated. Even so, she soon learns about the numerous problems that the dead suffer from, and starts to uncover a larger conspiracy in the processes.
With the ability to possess the souls of the living and manipulate them for the purpose of solving puzzles, Flipping Death wastes no time in revealing its primary mechanic to you. The story continues to come at fairly regular intervals, but the true star of the show tends to be the people you’ll be possessing to meet your goals.
These characters range from a tennis player that lives in the shadow of his father, to a ship captain in love with his boat, and even a firefighter who is deathly afraid of ghosts and monsters. There’s no shortage of quippy dialogue and humor that’s guaranteed to crack a smile on even the most stoic of faces.
Extra story comes in the form of optional challenges you can complete which unlock cards with backstory on each of the characters. Beyond this, the vast majority of your time will be spent switching between the real world and the underworld, which are mirrors of each other.
Each chapter will task you with solving several broad problems by completing a series of smaller tasks. These tasks inevitably snowball into a larger event that resolves your current goals. In true Zoink Games fashion, however, the answer is very rarely clear to you.
The game does employ a hint system, but I almost wish it didn’t. Many of the hints are direct answers, while others are so obtuse that they confuse more than anything. While it’s certainly a challenge to figure out how the developers want you to progress in certain situations, trying to crack Flipping Death’s logic is one of the game’s charms.
Because your primary gameplay is always going to be possessing people and solving puzzles, repetition does tend to set in pretty quickly. You’ll also need to wrestle with platforming in the underworld to collect souls that you need to possess characters.
The platforming a little too loose to really add anything to the experience and doesn’t really succeed in breaking up the puzzles like it should. Even so, the sheer creativity and wit on display is enough to (mostly) keep you engaged throughout.
A Distinct and Visually Engaging Style
Flipping Death employs Zoink Games’ unique style once again in fine form. The Combination of 3D depth and 2D models makes the world pop out from the screen in a lot of fun ways. The soundtrack is also quirky and fun, but I did find the main theme in the open world to grind on the ears after a while.
The boisterous trombone is fun, but the soundtrack here consisted of the same handful of measures, over and over again, while I explored. It became grating after a while. When you boil it all down, though, Flipping Death is a hilarious and wonderfully unique puzzle platformer.
Penny may have some big shoes to fill, but she dons the robe of death respectively and carries on the Zoink Games legacy admirably. Fans of their work, or someone looking for a fresh puzzle experience should definitely take a look.
Final Score: 8.0/10
A copy of Flipping Death was provided to PS4 Experts for review purposes
Article by - Bradley Ramsey
Insert date - 11/20/18