Spitting is a bit gross, isn’t it? Indeed, the notion of spitting in someone’s face is widely considered one of the most disrespectful and downright revolting things anybody could do. But could you imagine being able to spit out your teeth on demand? Most of us will only come close to such a scenario in our weirdest, wildest dreams, but Spitlings takes this idea and runs with it, creating a party game that’s great fun with friends, but not so much if you’re playing solo.
Spitlings – whether playing its Story mode or Party mode – is effectively a collection of small, single-screen stages in which you’ll need to defeat a number of bouncing, coloured bubbles inhabiting the area. To do this, you’ll need to spit out your teeth; you can either spit them straight up or straight down. Spitting downwards also simultaneously acts as the game’s jumping mechanic, with the momentum of spitting flinging you up in the air. You’ll only have a limited number of teeth you can spit out, but thankfully you can either gather them up to replenish your stock, or stand still and gradually regrow your teeth by holding down A.
The bubbles that bounce around the stage normally start off being quite large in size. As you hit them with your spit, they’ll split in two and become significantly smaller targets. This is both a blessing and a curse; they’re of course much easier to navigate around at such a small size, but as a trade-off there will be many more to keep an eye on as you make your way around the platforms. Thankfully, you can also be rather creative with your attacks; expelled spit can momentarily cling to surfaces, so you can strategically place them within the environment and allow them to drop down onto the bubbles. Very handy if you’re a bit preoccupied elsewhere.
Spitlings is a game that’s absolutely made to be played with friends. You can play locally, or invite friends over via online play, but either method instantly transforms the game into a significantly more enjoyable experience. Playing solo is fine to a point, but the stages often feel a bit empty when you’re on your own; even just one additional player turns it into a chaotic jumble of bubbles and spit, and it’s great fun to point fingers that that one person who keeps getting hit, forcing you to start the level again from scratch.
Longevity will ultimately depend on how often you’re able to play Spitlings with friends. The story mode won’t take long to conquer, and even though there are plenty of additional characters to unlock, they’re ultimately only cosmetic, providing no real incentive to unlock them all. On the other hand, party mode is great fun, giving you complete control on how you customise your experience, from selecting a specific level to implementing various parameters (including a neat retro filter) to make the sessions more difficult.