Bacon Man: An Adventure Review - Less Than Savory
Bacon Man: An Adventure is a hodgepodge of a platformer. With too much going on stylistically and difficult to master mechanics, Bacon Man is one or two patches away from being okay at best.
Bacon Man is a side-scrolling action platformer developed by Skymap Games. The story takes place in the fictional world of Nomround, a planet made up entirely of food. Bacon Man, the titular character, is the rightful heir to the Meat Throne, but is accused of killing his grandfather, Old King Roast Beef. Bacon Man is thus banished to the freezer, and Pork King is granted the throne in his place. The game follows the adventures of Bacon Man as he escapes the freezer and tries to regain what is rightfully his, the Meat Throne.
Bacon Man consists of seven different worlds, all of which are loosely based around food groups. There’s The Freezer, Meat Zone, Dairy Zone, Fruit Zone, Vegan Vally, and Mount Broc. While there is some cohesion in the overall concept, being that the game is centered around food, there isn’t much else tying it together.
Bacon Man’s graphics are a poorly realized, low poly affair, that look especially rough in anything resembling HD or Fullscreen. It is a blurry, rough, mess most of the time. The art style, though interesting, isn’t cohesive. There’s so much happening stylistically from character to character, level to level, that it feels more like a patchwork than a masterful mosaic. It feels as though the game couldn’t commit to any one particular style. None of the assets used in the game came together in any way.
The first stage of the game, which takes place in The Freezer, is an ice cavern with Eskimos armed with guns, Viking warriors, floating puffer-fish and an octopus in the background. Nothing about the initial world fits the five-minute-long exposition dump about "Tasty Space" or its people. It’s not until other levels are presented that the story comes along, but even then, the levels suffer from a lack of unity.
The sound effects are fairly compressed and suffer from feeling borrowed at times. There is no tenacious style to them and lack any punch or panache. As a result, the game world feels flat and empty.
Musically, like every other aspect of the game, it’s a stylistic menagerie. While some of the music sounds like it’s trying to pay homage to other gaming classics like Zelda, other pieces flounder. Ultimately, it suffers from the same lack of cohesion that the rest of the game does.
There is no voice acting in Bacon Man aside from the narrator, but that’s probably for the best. The narrator is used to dump a ton of information on the player at the beginning and that’s it. While there is written dialogue, the jokes fall flat unless the player has a deep love for food related puns.
In a platformer, the controls and hit boxes have to be tight. Neither is the case here and it leaves the game feeling floaty and unresponsive at times.
There are four playable characters that are each supposed to have their own unique play style, but the differences are negligible, and make the other choices nothing more than a palate swap of Bacon Man. The cutscenes don’t even show the character that players choose. It is always Bacon Man. The game just drops your choice into the level after the cutscene ends.
There are upgrades and new moves to unlock, but they don’t improve the core experience at all. If you can’t jump reliably in a platformer, there is a problem.
Bacon Man also offers a co-op mode, and while this gives players the benefit of having an advantage of certain obstacles or bosses, the level details suffer immensely in this mode. Even when hooked up to a TV screen, the on-screen prompts and text become nearly illegible.
Bacon Man is a wait-for-a-sale, and a patch or two, title. It has a few moments of charm and with a few updates from the developer, it could be a great game for speedrunners and hardcore platformer fans.
As it exists now, it is a confused, buggy, mess of a game where players can’t even reliably choose their own save file. Ultimately, Bacon Man is the product of lofty ambitions that didn’t quite hit the mark.
|Food Puns||Floaty Mechanics|
|Difficulty Progression||Incohesive Style|
|Character Models||Weak Sound|