Bugsnax Articles RSS Feed | GameSkinny.com Bugsnax RSS Feed on GameSkinny.com https://www.gameskinny.com/ en Launch Media Network Bugsnax Review: Hilarious Writing in an Unsettling World https://www.gameskinny.com/ldtjf/bugsnax-review-hilarious-writing-in-an-unsettling-world https://www.gameskinny.com/ldtjf/bugsnax-review-hilarious-writing-in-an-unsettling-world Mon, 09 Nov 2020 09:00:01 -0500 David Jagneaux

Bugsnax is one of the most bizarre video games I've ever played. Frankly, I'm not entirely sure how to describe it, which is troubling given my profession.

On the one hand, it's a surrealist adventure puzzle game in which you're sent on an expedition to research walking, sentient foods in the form of bugs amidst a mysterious disappearance, but on the other hand, it's like a weird fever dream of someone that passed out at an all-you-can-eat buffet.

It's all filtered through this lens of whimsical adventure that not-so-subtly implies there is more going on here than meets the eye. Despite the cheery attitudes of the denizens and seemingly innocent visual aesthetic, I couldn't help but feel absolutely creeped out every second I was playing Bugsnax.

This isn't a true horror game  not even close  but it's got that sort of "off" feeling that will likely stick with me longer than any actual horror game could ever dream to.

Bugsnax Review: Hilarious Writing in an Unsettling World

Instead of knocking out errands for strangers, you're hunting and capturing the little creepy crawlies and then feeding them like food to the island's denizens, Grumpuses.

A big part of what makes Bugsnax so creepy is what you end up doing almost immediately after arriving on the island. The game quickly devolves from a mystery thriller into a series of fetch quests and errands like any modern video game. Except in this case, instead of knocking out errands for strangers, you're hunting and capturing the little creepy crawlies and then feeding them like food to the island's denizens, Grumpuses.

After eating a Bugsnack, a Grumpus then has a body part transformed to resemble the Bugsnack. For example, after eating a Fryder (a spider with french fry legs), a character's arms suddenly become delicious french fries. It takes the phrase "you are what you eat" to a whole new level.

It's what immediately gave me pause when I first started playing Bugsnax. There's something about the way they smile and laugh with such cheery music playing in the background. It's as if the game is trying so hard to overcompensate in its portrayal of happiness to overcome how unsettling it really can be.

Most of Bugsnax could be summarized as trying to lure various Bugsnax into traps, but it gets very complicated later on. Knowing how certain Bugsnax interact with one another is super important. For example, the bull-esque Bunger will charge and head butt anything that smells like ketchup, so you can catch them in peace.

The plot in Bugsnax revolves around you, a journalist, sent to report on the wondrous world of Bugsnax found on Snaktooth Island. But once you arrive, the intrepid explorer that invited you, Lizbert Megafig, is nowhere to be found. Her sudden vanishing is a bit morbid to begin with, so the premise of devouring helpless bugs in the shapes of various food items doesn't exactly help.

As curious as the world is, though, most of the time I spent playing Bugsnax, I couldn't help but feel like it would have been better as a different genre or perhaps even as not a video game at all. The actual act of playing Bugsnax is by far the least appealing part.

I adore the vibrant world, creative premise, and unnerving underlying implications, but I couldn't help but feel like I'd have been more engrossed if it was just an animated series or more dialogue-driven adventure game. The strength here is the world and its characters, not the game mechanics.

Bugsnax also has one of the catchiest soundtracks you'll hear in a game all year.

Your character controls very floaty, and it's more than a little bit cumbersome to constantly juggle various pieces of equipment while in the middle of a hunt. In the past, the developers have cited games like Pokemon Snap and Ape Escape as inspirations for Bugsnax, but both of those boil down their ideas to an entertaining core to build upon. Bugsnax seems to try too hard to gamify itself in ways that it would have been better served to embrace non-gameplay elements.

All that being said, Bugsnax has a semi Adventure Time vibe going for it. On the surface, it's very light-hearted and colorful, with an aesthetic that seems appealing to kids, but underneath it all, there are some real layers and depth to be found both conceptually and in the game itself.

I particularly enjoyed how nuanced the puzzles became over time and how the game quickly evolved beyond just setting traps. You eventually get various different condiments and sauces for your slingshot to lure different types of bugs into traps, and intersecting patrol paths for bugs gets more and more important the further you get. A few of the puzzles can be pretty challenging and obtuse by design, which is a tad frustrating at times. 

Bugsnax also has one of the catchiest soundtracks you'll hear in a game all year, especially the theme song performed by artist Kero Kero Bonito. The quality of the writing and voice acting is also equally top-notch. It's tough to get through a play session without at least a handful of real belly laughs, especially if you appreciate the semi-awkward situational humor on display here or lots of great food puns, like me.

Bugsnax Review — The Bottom Line

Pros:

  • Hilarious writing is endearing
  • Charming visuals and music
  • Clever premise is oddly unsettling

Cons:

  • Game mechanics are a bit tedious
  • Some puzzle solutions aren't very clear
  • Setting and premise may have worked better in a different genre or media format

In a world where big console launch exclusives such as Spider-Man: Miles Morales, Demon's Souls, and Godfall are all vying for your attention, quirky indie games like Bugsnax rarely get much of the spotlight, but luckily, Sony seems to have supported this one from an early stage. I can say with supreme confidence that if Bugsnax looks like a good time to you based on its trailer, you'll very likely come away satiated after you've had your fill.

Bugsnax takes around seven to 10 hours to finish, depending on your speed, ability to crack puzzles, and the amount of exploration you do. Getting all the achievements or trophies could likely take even longer.

Bugsnax isn't the best version of the game it could have been, but it's still a really fun adventure.

[Note: Young Horses provided a PS5 digital copy of Bugsnax for this review.]

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November PlayStation Plus Games Include Two for PS4, One for PS5 https://www.gameskinny.com/jsdsz/november-playstation-plus-games-include-two-for-ps4-one-for-ps5 https://www.gameskinny.com/jsdsz/november-playstation-plus-games-include-two-for-ps4-one-for-ps5 Wed, 28 Oct 2020 16:14:31 -0400 GS_Staff

The big news for November is undoubtedly the launch of the PlayStation 5 and the Xbox Series X|S. But there are a lot of other interesting tidbits of info concerning games for next month as well, such as the introduction of the PlayStation Plus Collection, launching on November 12 in the U.S. and November 19 in Europe. Oh, and that Bugsnax will be the first free PS5 game on the PlayStation subscription service. 

Alongside Bugsnax, which will be available starting November 12 and November 19 respectively, two PlayStation 4 games will be up for grabs, and they're pretty sweet too. Middle-Earth: Shadow of War and Hollow Knight: Voidheart Edition will be available starting November 3. 

Bugsnax will be available until January 4, 2021, so it's essentially available for two months, a good move on Sony's part considering many (probably) won't pick up PS5s directly at launch. Middle-Earth: Shadow of War and Hollow Knight will be available until November 30. 

Bugsnax (PS5)

Aside from having a super snazzy theme song that's bound to get stuck in your head, Bugsnax looks like a delightful adventure into the cute and bizarre. Sure, there's an underlying horror element to the game since you're capturing Bugsnax and feeding them to Grumpuses, but you're doing it all to rebuild Snaxburg, so indulging the residents' cravings can't be all bad, right? 

A Busnax gameplay trailer shown earlier this year highlights several of the many tasks you'll undertake in the game, such as documenting, photographing, and trapping Bugsnax. There even seem to be "legendary" Bugsnax types you'll have to track down. 

It's not exactly Pokemon or Tem Tem (at least as far as we know so far), but Bugsnax certainly has tinges of those games that fans will want to keep an eye on. 

Middle-Earth: Shadow of War (PS4)

Middle-Earth: Shadow of War released for the PlayStation 4 back in 2017. The sequel to Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor, Shadow of War continues Talion's story in the Tolkien universe and keeps the ever-watchful Eye as the main antagonist. 

We reviewed Shadow of War when it released and found it to be a solid sequel, though its overall size tends to get in the way. Ty Arthur said: 

The base gameplay is more than solid, but the overall experience feels lessened by a combination of unnecessary expansion and lots of repetition... 

While not as groundbreaking or genre-changing as its predecessor, Shadow Of War is still very much worth your time if you loved the previous game, or even if you are new to the franchise and just want to see what all the fuss is about.

Hollow Knight: Voidheart Edition (PS4)

Hollow Knight's console port was released in September 2018 for the PS4. Called the Voidheart Edition, the port included the base game as well as a number of updates and bug fixes. It is the same version as that found on PC and Nintendo Switch. 

Over the years, Hollow Knight has garnered numerous awards and secured its place as one of the best games of the current generation. And rightfully so. In our review for Hollow Knight, Justin Michael said: 

Hollow Knight is a visually stunning Metroidvania game that's as fun as it is difficult, and sometimes a little terrifying...

It's not too often that I get the time to really play a game in-depth before I get to review it, and a lot of the time it ends up on my backlog afterward. But Hollow Knight is a game that I'm going to make time to finish, because it is simply that good.

From the beautiful art and the enchanting musical score, to the depth of its story and achievements, Hollow Knight is a must-play game for anyone that claims to be a fan of Metroidvania titles.

Be sure to pick up October's PlayStation Plus games, Need For Speed Payback and Vampyr, before they disappear on November 2. If you've yet to subscribe to PlayStation Plus, subscriptions can be purchased monthly ($9.99), quarterly ($24.99), and yearly ($59.99). Check back next month for December's PS Plus games. 

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Young Horses Announces Bugsnax as PlayStation 5 Launch Title https://www.gameskinny.com/58l4z/young-horses-announces-bugsnax-as-playstation-5-launch-title https://www.gameskinny.com/58l4z/young-horses-announces-bugsnax-as-playstation-5-launch-title Thu, 08 Oct 2020 15:55:47 -0400 Josh Broadwell

PlayStation 5 is set to have some bugs at launch — Bugsnax, that is. Development studio Young Horses announced the game that plays host to that oh-so-catchy theme song will release for PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, and PC on November 12 for $24.99.

Bugsnax revolves around a lone journalist following up an enigmatic lead from a questionable source. Elizabert Megafig claims to have found an island full of mysterious creatures called Bugsnax, but Clumby Clumbernut (your boss) thinks it's all a lie.

The island is home to a community of critters called Grampuses who need the Bugsnax to survive. These Grampuses are voiced by some recognizable names too, including:

  • Wambus Troubleham – Fred Tatasciore (Overwatch)
  • Chandlo Funkbun – Yuri Lowenthal (Marvel’s Spider-Man)
  • Filbo Fiddlepie – Max Mittelman (Saitama in One-Punch Man)
  • Shelda – Debra Wilson (Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order)
  • Floofty Fizzlebean – Casey Mongillo (Evangelion)
  • Beffica Winklesnoot – Cassandra Lee Morris (Persona 5, Trails of Cold Steel)
  • Elizabert Megafig- Helen Sadler (Battlefront
  • Triffany Lottablog- Haviland Stillwell (Devil May Cry 5)

Though Bugsnax is a PS5 launch game, it's not certain yet what, if any, DualSense enhancements it might feature.

Stay tuned to GameSkinny for more Bugsnax news as it develops, and be sure to check out our list of every PS5 launch game if you haven't already.

[Source: PlayStation Blog]

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Bugsnax Gameplay Trailer is a Tasty Appetizer https://www.gameskinny.com/x85z5/bugsnax-gameplay-trailer-is-a-tasty-appetizer https://www.gameskinny.com/x85z5/bugsnax-gameplay-trailer-is-a-tasty-appetizer Thu, 06 Aug 2020 19:19:00 -0400 Josh Broadwell

Bugsnax was a surprise announcement during the PlayStation 5 future of gaming event back in June, and the August PlayStation State of Play finally gave us a taste of some scrumptious Bugsnax gameplay.

You play as a journalist following up on a pitch reel — only you're not supposed to. Your boss, Clumby Clumbernut, says it'll cost you your career if you go to the island, so of course, you go to investigate because there wouldn't be a game otherwise.

And that means getting to know all the weird and wonderful residents of the island as you try to uncover the truth behind the supposed Bugsnax. It's soon pretty clear that the island isn't just a con scheme like Clumbernut claims.

All of the residents have some kind of task for you to complete, and they all revolve around Bugsnax. One needs your help using ketchup to wrangle a herd of burger Bugsnax, while other tasks you with deducing their favorite Bugsnax.

There's more to it than just helping randos on an island. As you catch more Bugsnax and solve folks' problems, they gradually come together to start building — or rebuilding, as one inhabitant tells you — the island's community.

More importantly, you'll unlock clues about the disappearance of Elizabert Megafig, the announcer in the original Bugsnax reel. Each Grumpus (island inhabitant) has a part of the story, but won't consent to interviews unless you feed them their favorite Bugsnax.

It's not all fun and games, though, as the trailer also shows a very large and very loud Bugsnax creature flying overhead one dark and stormy night. 

Hopefully, this isn't the only Bugsnax gameplay we'll get to savor between now and the game's Holiday 2020 launch as a PlayStation 5 exclusive. Stay tuned to GameSkinny for more Bugsnax news as it develops.

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