Sometimes the simplest approaches are the most fun. You can get straight to the point and just dig into a title without any of the “fluff” or complicated systems. Pizza Possumdoes this better than most games in recent memory and it shines because of it.
Shown off earlier this year, the game is a bite-sized experience that fits perfectly on the Switch. Despite being a little too short for my liking, the game is still chalk full of so much vibrant personality and most importantly, it’s a ton of fun to play.
Nom Nom Nom Nom…
Pizza Possum wastes no time getting you into this… bite-sized… experience. You begin at the bottom of a coastal, European island with puppies and dogs stopping you from gobbling down the elusive giant pizza.
That’s pretty much it. It’s simple, to the point, and wants you to gobble and sneak up a series of small village-like locations and cliffsides.
As a possum who loves pizza, you must consume various food pieces to accumulate a score. That score eventually leads to a key that can unlock the next area of your climb. While Pizza Possum‘s simplicity is a plus, I think the game could have used a few more early-game prompts to tell you what’s going on and how to do it.
Chomping Down on the Charm
Despite the minimal instruction and no dialogue, Pizza Possum thrives in two key areas: gameplay and presentation. Let’s start with the core game mechanics.
All it takes to maneuver in this isometric world is an easy move of the joystick. As you move, the possum (or possums in co-op) gobble up any food items you run by. The core mechanic of eating leads to the aforementioned keys, allowing you to explore new areas and climb to the ultimate prize.
Each time I could unlock a gate to these areas, I felt a smile run across my face as I knew what I was about to find would be new, charming, and chaotic. Pizza Possum may seem to take place in a quaint and straightforward set of European seaside villages, but it gets wild quickly.
Nabbing and dashing away from the guard dogs gets quite intense if you’re not careful. Multiple pups can be on your tail at once, and there are only a few ways to make some space. Thankfully, the game shows you a “game over” screen with your accumulated points and potential item unlocks that will help you in your next run. The respawn areas are also quick and placed in some strategic but generous locations.
Pizza Possum also looks and sounds great! From the simple and cute sound effects that the possum and the dogs make when interacting with one another to your character’s cartoonish fun noises when eating the island’s hordes of food.
Several satisfying musical cues and sound design choices prevent even the shortest and least successful attempts from feeling frustrating.
If a low price and a quick play are what you’re looking for in a year packed with the opposite, Pizza Possum is an easy recommendation. I felt it “ended” a little too quickly, but there is also some replayability here.
I can see Pizza Possum being a staple on my Nintendo Switch home screen as I spend a few minutes here and there trying to top my previous scores and gobble down the giant pizza pie atop this beautifully animated island.
[The publisher provided a copy of the game for review purposes.]
Reviewed on: Switch
Review: Pizza Possum
Pizza Possum is short and simple, but it brings a big package of charm and personality. Climbing seaside villages while dodging guard dogs and reaching for a giant pizza is a blast!