After the monumental success of the Splatoon franchise, many folks were quite rightly expecting some copycats to appear. Given the high accessibility of the games and their family-friendly nature, some – this writer included – even encouraged more of the same from other developers. But we’re not sure any of us were expecting this monstrosity. Pooplers is absolutely awful; an incomprehensible mess of a game that we can’t imagine will appeal to anyone other than youngsters who think flatulence is the funniest thing in the world.
You can play either via online multiplayer, or against AI bots. Either way, the aim of the game is the same – whichever baby covers the most ground with poop before the end of the match wins. It’s fairly straightforward, and there’s no deviation from this objective at all. You crawl around the environment at an incredible slow pace with the analogue stick, and expel your fluorescent waste by holding down A (or Y if using a single Joy-Con), effectively creating a trail of poop in your wake.
Random power ups appear throughout the course of matches, which grant you perks such as speed boosts and an explosive bomb of… y’know, gas. But there are also adults patrolling the area, and if you get too close to them, they’ll pick you up and chuck you back in your cot, costing you plenty of time while the other babies fart their way to victory. That’s really about it – the amount of poop you manage to lay on the ground is designated via percentages dotted around the corners of the screen, so you can easily see how you’re doing in comparison to everyone else. Of course, you can also crawl over your competitor’s poop and cover it with your own poop (and we can’t quite believe we’re writing these words).
Graphically, the game is very barebones, and looks like a game from the early 2000s. Nevertheless, it’s colourful enough, and runs just as well as you’d hope (although we did notice some instances of babies getting stuck in the environment). On the flip side, the sound design is quite simply an assault on your ears. There’s a constant – and we mean constant – flurry of fart noises throughout the duration of the matches. Let’s put it this way, Pooplers isn’t really a game you’d want to play in public.
We’re sure there are people out there that would get some enjoyment out of this game, but quite frankly, we’re struggling to believe that might be true. Its gameplay is sluggish, the graphics are poor, and the general premise is just baffling. It may be cheap, but we’d much sooner encourage everyone to save their pennies and go for the real deal instead. This game is a load of poop.