The Puppeteer is a platform game at heart, although it introduces many unique gameplay features that make it stand out.
You could say The Puppeteer shares some similarities with LittleBigPlanet (minus the customisation options) as both games have unorthodox platform elements that keeps the gameplay fresh and fun throughout.
It’s also worth mentioning the presentation is something I have not seen in a video game before.
The main difference between The Puppeteer and other video games is that it’s set as a type of stage show. Levels comprise of different sets and the curtains will rise and fall when you open or close sections within each level.
You will also hear the audience applause and/or boo at certain parts of the game. This gives the game a unique atmosphere to give you the experience that you actually are participating/witnessing an actual puppeteer show.
The story is charming because you play the role of a heroic puppet by the name of Kutaro. Kutaro unfortunately loses his head, but this doesn’t stop him from staying alive. In order for him to keep functioning, he’ll have to find multiple other heads that he can attach to his body.
You get to collect up to three heads at a time and if you get hit, you’ll have to regain your head quickly or else you’ll die. Different puppet heads also possess some unique abilities that you can exploit as well.
The main goal of the game is for Kutaro to regain his original head and head back home. This is because he and lots of other puppets were kidnapped by the evil Moon Bear King who steals the souls of children and forces them to work at his castle.
Kutaro will have to go on a journey to save as many people as he can and stop the Moon Bear King and his evil plans.
The gameplay is where this game really shines because it introduces abilities that Kutaro can use to keep the gameplay not so repetitive.
The main arsenal Kutaro will have at his disposal is a pair of scissors he stole from the Moon Bear King called Calibrus. Calibrus allows Kutaro to somewhat glide in the air as he cuts through different pieces of material in each level.
Even if it’s clouds of smoke, Kutaro can use Calibrus to “cut” through the smoke to access higher areas and more.
Calibrus isn’t the only item that Kutaro has in the game too. As you progress further into the game, more abilities and items will be available that will make the gameplay experience even more fun and exciting. Kutaro will obtain a shield where not only can he block enemy attacks, but deflect projectiles back at them too.
He will also get a handy grappling hook and my favourite item is the ninja bomb. The best part about the ninja bomb is that it’s unlimited so you can explode enemies as much as you like simply by spamming the circle button.
Navigating through the different levels can be challenging, but it’s very satisfying once you beat them. The main thing you got to keep in check is that Kutaro’s head never strays too far away from his head.
As aforementioned, if you lose too many of his heads he will die. This is easier said than done when enemies are coming at you can multiple jumping obstacles stand in your way!
At the end of each level, there is a boss waiting for you. The boss battles are grand and epic in scale and will require you to use all of Kutaro’s items and abilities in order to defeat them.
Most of the bosses have an easy pattern for you to follow, but they can be lengthy and challenging too. The boss battles in my opinion are awesome and they are certainly one of the best features of the entire game.
Overall, the game has 21 levels that are set in multiple different locations. There are incentives to play through the game again because there are various different heads that you might have missed.
I was surprised how lengthy and exciting the game is. Not to mention it only has a RRP of $69.99. It’s slightly cheaper than most video games are in New Zealand…
If you’re looking to play something different that doesn’t involve shooting with guns, The Puppeteer might be the perfect game for you. It has smart level design, unique presentation and gameplay that is challenging and epic at the same time.
Graphics: 8.0Gameplay: 9.0Sound: 8.0Lasting Appeal: 8.0