Top Critic Average
With my time spent on this little platformer, I have developed a bit of a soft spot for Pankapu. We have been through a great deal together. The world of dreams ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty place and I don’t care how tough you are, it will beat you to your knees and keep you there if you let it.
At its core it's a solid action/platformer, with a beautiful aesthetic and captivating sound track. The difficulty spikes combined with the frequent load times can definitely test your patience, but overall the positives outweigh the negatives. So if you're in the mood for a pleasant platformer, the dreamy world of Pankapu just might be the game for you.
While Pankapu is not that original, it's a solid start for a first game from Too Kind Studio. The creative direction is beautiful, but the gameplay is not solid enough to incite a sure buy for everyone.
If you need a 2D platforming fix you can't go far wrong with Pankapu. While the polished, crisp, beautiful presentation and gameplay are engaging enough, it is nevertheless slightly let down by a few elements that affect the beat by beat and overall flow of the game. The charming characters and parallel narrative are intriguing, and while the resonant themes, fantastical atmosphere and wonderful locales enchant and are especially vibrant on a big screen, the controls aren't quite tight or precise enough considering the challenging level design an enemy combat. An enjoyable game, if not quite as strong as it could have been.
The bright and distinct visuals are incredibly appealing and the audio is pretty decent, too, which really helps Pankapu sink its claws into you as you play. It really channels the ‘one more go' type of play, and this is why I would recommend the game. Sure, it's not original in its gameplay mechanics, but it's just a solid, good game that harkens back to the days of playability being key.
There is no doubt that Pankapu has a beautiful art style with a lot of attention given to the character animations, but unfortunately it also suffers with clunky controls and awkward difficulty spikes.
Looks like it’s that time of the week, folks! The Nintendo eShop has yet another slew of new titles to explore and try, and this time around we have one to give a hands-on experience! Too Kind Studios’ Kickstarter project in 2015 gave rise to the well-animated title Pankapu: the Dreamkeeper for the Steam platform in 2016. Now in the year of our Nayru 2017, Too Kind has managed to breathe another chance of life into their title by bringing it onto the Switch console. Check out the video below as I give it a shot!
If you can look past the uneven difficulty curves, Pankapu is a relatively enjoyable platformer with fun class-switching mechanics, especially if looking for one for a younger (8-15) audience.
Pankapu has interesting elements in its favour. The game's plot and the way it is presented is certainly one of them and its well crafted visuals add to the flavour. At the same time, the level design feels too repetitive and the game doesn't really feel like it offers anything new, as Penkapu's good story telling and visuals end up outshining almost everything else about the game.
Review in Portuguese | Read full review
Chances are you'll have a good time playing Pankapu if you pick it up, but it's very unlikely that anyone will be putting it on their list of best games ever made. It's good, not great, and slightly lets down its beautiful art style with its unremarkable gameplay.
Pankapu does seem to try to compensate with carrots to go with that stick in the form of the gorgeous artwork, glimpses of some greater story that you’ll want to fully reveal, and a pretty abundant amount of lore. Unfortunately those are mere baby carrots against practically a redwood tree full of aggravation. In many regards even though it has a very modern look its gameplay execution reminds me most of old 8-bit action / platformers with awkward and stilted controls mixing with level design that is in desperate need of tuning and rebalancing. I think it’s the irregular damage amounts you take that compound my irritation. Rather simply having you take damage of 1 from all threats they’ve gone back in and made variable tweaks so that your health gauge doesn’t mean very much at a quick glance, to know what you can survive from where you are in the level you’d need to pull out a conversion chart. None of this is to say that the game is impossible to beat, just that the process of doing so too often feels like a manufactured ordeal where your tools for being effective are deliberately compromised.
Pankapu leaves much to be desired in nearly every aspect, with the sole exception being its artwork. The story hints at something greater to never deliver, the music is impossibly repetitive and grating, and by far its biggest sin is that the platforming is atrocious. The difficulty and frustration is so ever-present that it annihilates any chance of it being any fun, and the slow controls only serve to put the final mark on a disastrous title.
Pankapu is a series of lessons on what to not do when creating a platformer, wrapped up in a greedy episodic format that should not exist at all. Amongst its many issues, the sluggish controls stand out as the main big flaw of this piece of indie-developed frustration.