You may have already heard about Guacamelee! which was released previously on the PC, PlayStation 3 and Vita. It received a number of positive reviews and several updates that got bundled up together as a “gold version” offering. So what’s different about the “Super Turbo Championship Edition”? Well, let’s find out!
For those not in the know, Guacamelee! Super Turbo Championship Edition follows the story of Juan, a Mexican agave farmer who has a bit of a soft spot for El Presidente’s daughter. It’s not long before she’s captured by an evil skeleton by the name of Carlos Calaca, and Juan is killed in a hasty attempt to rescue her. He is then sent to the realm of the dead and is resurrected as a mighty luchador! It is then up to you to punch, kick and wrestle your way through various areas, gaining new abilities, to try again and save your love.
Guacamelee! is best described as a side-scrolling, platformer, puzzler, punchy, explorer type.. Oh. Okay. So it’s not that easy to explain, but there are obvious signs of inspiration from games like Super Metroid, Super Mario, Rayman Origins, Castlevania, and more. The game also boasts an impressive and beautiful art style which strongly reminded me of Samurai Jack (damn I miss that cartoon), only with more colour and dare I say it.. more character? I was completely blown away by the visuals, put it that way.
Gameplay wise, there is some incredibly creative and challenging platforming on offer here. The game starts off fairly simple, but it’s not long before you have to carefully time jumps whilst shifting between dimensions, performing uppercuts for that last extra few pixels of height and turning into a chicken.. yes, that’s right,.. a chicken, to reach the next area.
The controls are tight, responsive and beautifully fluid. You’re never cheated, only punished for lack of skill or quick reflexes. It’s handy though that failing a jump often means just being quickly put back nearby. The game can be difficult in places, but it never feels beyond achievable. There’s also a large number of paths (and abilities that help unlock even more new ones) to encourage exploration and uncovering collectables that reward you with more coins, health or stamina.
Guacamelee! Super Turbo Championship Edition is not merely just a port of a “Game of the Year Edition”. This new version includes:
- Expanded Story: An expanded version of the game that includes DLC content from the original
- New Game Areas: Players will ride boats through the Canal of Flowers to save a besieged fishing town, and avoid lava as they climb through the fiery Volcano
- New Boss: Face off against The Trio of Death, a three-headed skeleton that lives in the Volcano, helping the evil Carlos Calaca build his skeleton armies
- New Abilities: Maximize destruction with the powerful new INTENSO combat mode. Plus: Chicken Bombs and Independent Dimension Swapping
- New Enemies: Lethal new elite-class enemies that want to chokeslam luchadores to sleep
- Support for multiple save slots
- Dual currency system that supports permanent item unlocks
All these enhancements make it more the definitive edition, like a version 1.5 kind of thing. In a gaming generation where there seems to be a lot of ports and “HD remakes”, it’s great to see DrinkBox Studios approach this differently, refining and improving the game to create the best possible experience for a new audience and fans of the original.
Guacamelee! Super Turbo Championship Edition is a fantastic game from start to finish. Those who own an Xbox One will be extremely happy to know that it is available for free in July as part of the “Games with Gold” promotion, whereas it is only around £11.99 on the Xbox 360, Wii U and PlayStation Store. Whatever it costs, it’s worth it. Don’t hesitate to pick this one up!