Yoku's Island Express

Yoku's Island Express

Dung ball pinball.

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Yoku's Island Express

Yoku's Island Express

Team17 Digital Ltd

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In the mood for a whole new kind of video-gaming experience? Well, here's a game that combines Metroidvania and pinball! You play as a dung beetle who, instead of rolling balls of dung, pushes a pinball through some breathtaking environments. It's a fun experience that's pretty and easy to pick up and play, and kids will love it. It makes an ingenuous change to the usual platform games!

Can you think of many games that have been a hit with absolutely anyone who's played them? Yoku's Island Express is one of this exclusive circle.

Gamers of any age will love it. Older gamers because it will remind them of playing pinball as a kid, while others will love it for being a close to perfect platform game that combines original gameplay mechanics with a fresh aesthetic. This is a video game that defies to be pigeonholed, a deft blend of action-platformer and exploration game with the fast-paced gameplay of pinball, all set in a giant, limitless world.

Yoku's Island Express - Team17 Digital Ltd - Dung ball pinball.

You play as Yoku, a little dung beetle who's very attached to his ball of dung. He arrives on the beautiful and mysterious island of Mokumana to take over the postman's job and deliver the island's mail. But because your little beetle never lets go of his ball of dung, he can't jump and seems to only be able to move around at a snail's pace.

Then one day, the island's residents decide they need him to foil an evil plan to kill the ancient god, Mokuma, who lies deep in sleep in the heart of the island.

Our favourite part? The beautiful game world that is slowly dying. It reminded us of the hit movies from Studio Ghibli, where the wildlife and vegetation plays a role of its own. It makes the exploration side of the game unforgettable, especially with the game boasting such soothing and positive vibes.

Yoku's Island Express - Team17 Digital Ltd - Dung ball pinball.

We loved the unique gameplay. Because Yoku is a slowcoach, he speeds up by turning into a ball that you control using pinball flippers found in the game environment. And it is this original gameplay mechanic that makes Yoku's Island Express such a unique platformer. The game makes full use of everything you can do in pinball, but spreads the action out over dozens of levels across a giant map, with each level connected with funny cutscenes.

Thankfully, you'll never be punished for your mistakes, and the game always offers you a way out and a chance to come back and try again later.

Yoku's Island Express - Team17 Digital Ltd - Dung ball pinball.

We liked the successful blend of platform, pinball, exploration, and Metroidvania elements. You'll need to unlock particular items to open new passages: a whistle to wake up the natives, a grappling hook to propel yourself across greater distances, etc. Progression is perfectly paced, and there's a real joy in revisiting earlier areas to uncover all of their secrets. And if you're a bit of a completionist, you'll love all of the secret areas and side quests.

Yoku's Island Express - Team17 Digital Ltd - Dung ball pinball.

Here's a little tip that lets you jump when it seems like you can't: keep an eye out for the slugs. Once you've sucked one up, you can make it explode. This will send you flying in the opposite direction away from your ball of dung. Just be warned that the slugs sometimes come in the most useful some distance from where you find them, and the timing can be tight.

And there are two distinct ways to approach the game: it's a pretty straightforward game for younger gamers and anyone who just wants to complete the story, but for gamers who want to discover all of Yoku's Island Express' secrets and hidden chests, the game is a much stiffer challenge that boasts loads of replayability. A unique concept of the kind we'd like to see more often.

Yoku's Island Express
  • Age7

    Age

  • DesktopSmartTvMobileTablet

    Availability

  • Solo

    Players

  • GamepadKeyboardTouch

    Playability

Publisher: Team17 Digital Ltd

Developer: Villa Gorilla

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