Papo Y Yo is a game that’s made a few waves since its announcement over a year ago. Since then, the character of Monster has been redesigned to have a less “cutesy” appearance, and the game seems to have been given a bit more polish as we (hopefully) near its release.
The story is pretty fantastic in its simplicity (from the fact sheet): “The game is about a young boy named Quico and his best friend Monster, a huge beast with razor-sharp teeth and a very dangerous problem: an addiction to poisonous frogs. The minute Monster sees one hop by, he scarfs it down and flies into a violent, frog-induced rage where no one is safe. And yet, Quico isn’t afraid… he loves his Monster and wants to save him.”
The game itself is a puzzler, but features a beautiful, vibrant world, a stark contrast to the typical Favelas we’ve seen in one of the recent Modern Warfare titles, as well as in Max Payne. Sharp, beautiful visuals with an interesting visual aesthetic (reminding me of Majin and the Forsaken Kingdom). The game also features a very real relationship between Quico and Monster, where success in solving puzzles and advancing through the game depends on “Monster’s state, he may not help with a puzzle until he’s had a snack or a nap … and if he gets hold of a frog he can be Quico’s worst enemy.”
Obviously, this game is dealing with the beautiful and dark metaphor of a child’s love for his father, while suffering through that father’s horrific addictions (of some form) and inexplicable rages. While we’ve certainly seen this story before on the big (and small) screen, we’ve never gotten something quite so similar in the interactive space. I, for one, am sold, and will pick the game up on day 1 upon release.
Here’s Gamespot’s recent hands-on with Papo Y Yo: