We won't go so far as to accuse Cutie Pets series developer Yazar Media Group of a heinous plot to thumb its nose at the very laws of nature. It's certainly not a heinous plot, at the very least; we'd call it more stare-worthingly kooky. But if you believed the cryptozoological marvel known as Mandeer in Cutie Pets Pick Berries was all the group had to offer, you can now watch pudgy little platypi exert themselves vertically in Cutie Pets Jump Rope.
Yes, we know why you're here. And yes, there is a Platypus Man (Manypus?) who seems to be dressed as a lifeguard even if there is nary a pond to be seen in the game. His role is minimal, however, only serving as the ref for up to 5 competing, more normal-ish monotremes.
The full scope of the game is very simple, and would feel right at home among a collection of WarioWare microgames. As jump ropes pass over each participating platypus one of three buttons will appear beneath them on screen. Press the right button at the right time, and the platypus will clear the rope for another go. Players need to watch out for button changes and variations in speed, either aiming for a high number of consecutive jumps in single player or to be the last one remaining on their webbed feet in multiplayer.
Every controller available to the Wii U can be used to play, including the GamePad, Pro Controller, and the Wii Remote either solo or paired with a nunchuk or Classic Controller. This naturally switches up the types of buttons each player will need to press, but it all works well and just about everyone should end up happy with the variety.
Aside from the different-yet-friendly woodsy style that wraps this series and another set of Miiverse stamps that can be unlocked, there isn't really anything else to this game. After plenty of hopping, Cutie Pets Jump Rope seems to adhere to a very basic minigame formula with nothing thrown in to shake it up. Adding more competitive elements such as ways to affect opponents could have brought more to a party atmosphere, as otherwise everyone is essentially playing solitaire to see who can last longest. Even so, wIth the right people and under the right conditions it could certainly be seen as an amusing if not long-lasting diversion.
With Cutie Pets Jump Rope, the series seems to be cementing itself as offering small, simple experiences in adorably quirky packaging. What Jump Rope does, while very limited, it does well; it's just not going to entertain for any great length of time. The relatively low price point might make it a nice impulse buy if you have a fun type of crowd coming over or for something to fiddle with for a few minutes at a time. Ultimately, however, it feels Jump Rope would be best served as part of a larger package, and who knows? Maybe we'll see the whole buff zoo show up someday.