Octodad: Dadliest Catch Review
I have to admit to you, it is a bit tough to review a game like Octodad: Dadliest Catch. The reason for this is that these indie developers are so unique in their design philosophy, that their games become something you must experience first-hand to get a good grasp of the concepts. That said, let’s take a look at what makes this game so special.
Please be warned that beyond this point, there are some slight spoilers.
The whole premise behind Octodad: Dadliest Catch is that you are an octopus which lives in secret as a human. You have a wife and a couple of children who don’t suspect a thing. For most of the game, you find yourself doing traditionally mundane tasks like mowing the yard, going grocery shopping, or my personal favorite, grilling hamburgers. However, you also get to do some outings like take your kids to a museum or attend a wedding.
The fun arrives when you realize that the mechanics are purposefully hard and challenging, making even walking out a door a somewhat complicated event. Often, you will cause destruction and mayhem by just trying to find your tie or pour a glass of milk; and that’s ok. It’s downright hilarious when you are only wanting to make your morning coffee and your tentacles are flapping everywhere, breaking expensive china, much to the dismay of your wife. I’ve never had so much fun trying to climb up a ladder in any game.
The level designs are simple but they work. You will rarely get lost and not know where to go, even if you explore the world around you. There are a lot of things to see and do in each place you visit, which demand your attention and natural curiosity.
I also need to mention the comedy. From the moment you hear the theme song on the title screen, you know you are in for a good time. Be warned though; if you are one for strong dialog jokes, then you might not enjoy the humor that much. However if you enjoy slapstick, putting a toaster in a microwave to set off the fire alarm kind of humor, then you must play this game. It is full to the brim with those moments and that couldn’t make me any happier.
Black (Ink) Marks
As much as I absolutely love this game, there are some drawbacks which may turn away potential players. Unfortunately, the genius mechanics which give the bulk of the mayhem, is also what holds this game back. There were several times where I needed to crawl into a tight, enclosed space and the game wouldn’t let me. In one instance, I got stuck for about 20 minutes before it would let me move in the direction I needed to go. The game is also near impossible to play with a mouse and keyboard, so a gamepad is definitely recommended.
While the level design is great and filled with charm, at one point in the game, an entire level is little more than pushing one button over, and over, and over again. This is a bit sad too because that particular level could have been so much more engaging and enjoyable.
The voice acting, while ok, is not going to win any awards. This is the area in which you can truly tell this is an indie team using the only resources available. I’m not saying that the voice acting is bad, but rather it’s just meh.
The game’s campaign mode is also very short. In about the same time that it takes to complete one episode of Telltale’s The Walking Dead, you can complete the entire story. However, this is somewhat of a moot point since you can to go back and play any level you want in any order. You can also try the game out in co-op mode, with each player controlling one tentacle at a time, but this also makes the game almost unplayable and unnecessarily frustrating.
All of those issues aside, the game’s fun outweighs its faults. Do I recommend you go purchase this game right away? Absolutely! If you give it a chance, then I don’t think it will disappoint. However, do not buy Octodad: Dadliest catch if you have no sense of humor. If you are a fuddy duddy then this game won’t be enjoyable to you, but if you like a good laugh and household calamity, go play it.
I give Octodad: Dadliest Catch an 8 out of 10.