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Backlog Impressions | SHEEPO

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We’ve all heard that counting sheep is a great way to fall asleep, but have you ever wondered what sheep count? Well, according to Kyle Thompson and his wacky dev team, they must count an abundance of alien eggs! At least that seems to be what they do in the pleasantly peculiar platformer SHEEPO!

Instead of falling asleep however, the eponymous sheep-like SHEEPO finds itself waking up in the strange world of Cebron. And instead of merely counting them, it must find and collect 6 different eggs of six different species that inhabit this alien world, transforming into their titular forms, and solve gratifying platforming puzzles! Here’s how we fared on our jaunt through Cebron!

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One thing we’ve learned over the years is that sometimes the most interesting games are the strangest upon a first glance. And, after glancing at SHEEPO, it definitely seemed strange. The great thing about platformers however, is that they can go in a thousand different directions and still be great, especially when they flirt with the Metroidvania formula. So, when we were offered the opportunity to check it out, we jumped at it in a heartbeat!

I mean, we’re suckers for a good platformer, and with Top Hat establishing themselves as a promoter of charming, unique, and quality indies, we had no doubt that we’d be in for a good time with SHEEPO!

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It’s not always easy for a platformer to distinguish itself from the bazillions of similar games out there. Within the first few minutes of playing SHEEPO however, it quickly proves itself as a standout. In not just its quirky art style, which sets the stage for its even quirkier soundtrack, but also in its unique transformation mechanics, that will have you taking the form of the resident Cebronians to solve the clever platforming puzzles throughout your playthrough!

You’ll find yourself taking the form of a long-neck bird, to fly over obstacles, or a slim ball to cling to walls and find new areas, and even a skeletal worm-thing that has you burrowing through the ground. It’s an absolute blast, and the best part is, it handles beautifully. Even when traversing some of the more precarious terrain like spinning blades, spikes, and crushers. I especially loved how as you progress further into the game, you’ll have to put your knowledge of each technique to the test, and string them together using some really fancy footwork!

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In a lot of ways, SHEEPO is exactly what it needs to be, and what it set out to be. At no point did it feel like I needed to fight it, nor was there anything about it that frustrated me. In fact, it just felt like a breezy, relaxing experience that hit all the platforming notes perfectly. Of course, I did play through it on the easiest difficulty, but even at a higher difficulty, I’m not sure that sentiment would change.

One of the most unique parts of SHEEPO, that really set that feeling in stone, was that there are no enemies to fight! Instead it’s you versus the topography, and your ability to execute the tasks you’re given. Well except for the boss encounters, which you do have to fight to win, but instead of directly damaging them, you’ll find yourself dodging their attacks, and using it against them! Honestly, one of my favorite things to do in any game with an end-level confrontation!

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Going into SHEEPO, we weren’t exactly sure what to expect, but in the end we were pleasantly surprised by a well crafted, charming, slightly strange, yet satisfying experience. So if that sounds like it’s right up your alley, and if you’re looking for a unique adventure, that tickles your funny bone, and satiates your craving for a good platformer, then you don’t have to look much further than SHEEPO! We can’t recommend it enough. 

If you’re interested in checking out SHEEPO for yourself, then you can find it on the Nintendo Switch, the PlayStation Store, and the Xbox Store starting October 20th!