08 . 21 . 2020

Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout


You look down at your hands.

They are each missing a finger, and a quarter the size they should be. Flexing 8 nubs in vain, you try to reach out and grab something – you miss, falling flat on the face.

After getting back up, you take a look around. Vibrant, colorful shapes and obstacles are rooted to the spot on all sides. There is no escape. The little land that exists ends abruptly in every direction, suspended in midair. There is something, something big, shining far away on the opposite side of this strange island. You start running, unsure why. You didn’t try to start moving. You realize you have no control over yourself, and are heading straight towards the shine. Others are alongside you, and collide with each other in brilliant fashion, squeaking like a dog doy every time they do so. 

Some are unable to find space to run, and fall far, far off the land until they are able to be seen no longer. Those who fall never return. You can only hope your fate will be different, and it very well might be – you have almost reached the shine. You are close, so close that you begin to reach out. Only a few more inches… 

BAM! A striped pink-and-white mallet comes out of nowhere, sending you far off the island and into the void. Squeaking uncontrollably, everything turns black as you fall into the void.

Suddenly you wake up in a cold sweat. It was just a dream! With a sigh of relief, you reach for your phone to check twitter, ready to get the day started by arguing with some strangers. But as you scroll through your feed, you realize it wasn’t just a dream. No people are fighting, no celebrities are being canceled, all there is on twitter today are pink and green jelly beans running around on islands with vibrant, colorful shapes. Looking down at your hands, you see they are both missing a finger, and are a quarter of the size they should be. You cry for help but all that comes out is an incredibly high-pitched squeak.

This is Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout.

Although Fall Guys (most likely) will not give you nightmares and take over reality, it is nonetheless on many people’s minds today. It blew up unexpectedly, enough for my Dad to become aware of its existence within two weeks of launch. According to The Sports Rush, It already has over 10 Million players on Playstation and 2 Million on Steam (PC) and I can definitely see why. It is unique, and although it technically follows the Battle Royale format, the gameplay is so different that it didn’t feel old at all.

My first (and only) win!

Unlike any other Battle Royale game I have played so far, Fall Guys has multiple rounds, with only a fraction of the players eliminated each time. Instead of the usual 100, it starts with 60, and usually finishes off in a special gamemode with around 8 players. That’s another thing that makes Fall Guys stand out from other games – every round is a different gamemode and these are chosen from a pool of 25 total completely randomly (although final rounds are chosen from a certain few). 

In some game modes players are split into 3 teams, with the team that comes in last being eliminated. I haven’t encountered a gamemode I don’t enjoy, although there are still a few complaints I have. For one thing, a few game modes are a bit unbalanced. Games such as “Perfect Match” and “Block Party” I have played through without a single person being eliminated. Some of the team game modes also feel a little bit too similar, such as Hoarders and Egg Scramble, both of which present you the goal of keeping objects inside your team’s area.

In Egg Scramble, you fight 3 other teams to have the greatest number of eggs in your goal after 2 minutes. Gold eggs are worth extra!

These are pretty small gripes, however, and are by no means gamebreaking. Also be aware that there have been some server issues due to the unexpected success of the game, but the developers, Devolver Digital, have been working hard to expand the number of players they can host. This hopefully shouldn’t be a problem for much longer.

There’s really not much to touch on in terms of morality. No strong language, sexual content, or violence at all. Only thing I noticed was one of the team game modes had teams fighting to be the last to all get “jinxed”, kind of like virus tag style. That’s a pretty small nitpick though.

The final things I have to say are small comments on controls, graphics, and replayability. I think the devs did very well on the controls. They pulled off an incredible balance between clumsiness and responsive controls. Your character rarely feels unresponsive or annoying to control, but looks clumsy as ever. The fact that you are able to dive also brings opportunities for  clutch plays, and is really fun to do. While colorful graphics definitely work well in a game like this, I do think they went a bit over the top. Sometimes characters kind of blend in with the environment, and it can be tough on the eyes. 

When it comes to replayability, however, I worry the game is at risk. Even though the developers added a battle pass (which is free) and seasons, they feel a little bit out of place. Unless the game modes rotate in between seasons, I don’t see much of a point of including them. And I feel they may need to rotate at least a third of them each season, if they want to keep the game interesting. While 25 modes may seem like a lot, they’re are all pretty shallow and lack depth. Along with the simple controls, you have yourself a game without a very high skill gap. Thus, I don’t see many playing as long for or as often as games like Fortnite. This type of game is still pretty new, however, and it will take time to see how everything holds up.

Fall Guys‘ take on a “Battle Pass”, a type of linear reward system most well known for it’s implementation in Fortnite.

Priestly Comment by Fr. Stephen (trekkie4christ):

“Looks fun, but too much neon for me.”

Scoring – 83%

Gameplay: 5/5

Graphics: 4/5

Controls: 5/5

Replayability: 2.5/5

Morality/Parental Warnings

One gamemode has players “Jinxing” each other virus tag style

Players can input custom names, so beware of trolls

About Catoons

Catoons is the founder of Catholic Game Reviews and a future engineer. He’s a primarily a Nintendo fan, but also enjoys exploring the wider video game market on PC.

He encourages you to pray for the intercession of Blessed Carlo Acutis for gamers around the world!