New Super Lucky's Tale - A casual but memorable 3D platformer
New Lucky’s Tale is through and through a 3D Platformer. It’s odd to play a game that so easily fits into one game genre after playing so many hybrids, but this game is what it is and it does it well. Each level has four challenges to complete: finishing the level, finding the hidden page, collecting the hidden letters L-U-C-K-Y in one run, and collecting 100 paw coins in the level. The coins can be used to buy new clothes for your character as well.
This game has a very light difficulty. If you want to introduce someone to the 3D Platformer genre this would be a good game to do so. By the time I had finished with the game I had gained a life count in the 60s. I don’t remember any games that I was able to acquire a 1-man count that high on the first play through. Extra lives are plentiful, and even the most challenging content that comes post-credits, the difficulty never gets higher than maybe being three quarters the way through a modern Mario game like Odyssey.
But if you’re fine with a relaxing and atmospheric platformer with fun and memorable characters, this one will not disappoint.
There are different versions you do need to be aware of. It is quite easy to confuse Super Lucky’s Tale and New Super Lucky’s Tale, given that the latter sounds like a sequel rather than an update. If you plan on playing this game, you need to be careful that you install the right version. When I started streaming, I installed a game called Super Lucky’s Tale when I was meant to be playing the “new” one. The main difference is that the original game was meant more for Virtual Consoles where the “new” version is meant more for traditional gaming consoles and computers.
This unfortunate mistake did turn out to be fortunate as the first video of my streaming sessions are an effective way to compare and contrast the difference in the first level of the game and opening in both versions. While I did like the control and interface better for the one designed for the PC and consoles, I did find that the change in animation of the character to be the one thing I was disappointed in. The VR version had an adorable walk cycle of Lucky using his hands with a frolicy gate, while the PC “new” version’s cycle was a very dull walking animation.
The opening cinematic though, was much better production wise on the PC version. The VR version seemed like the opening was put in as an afterthought with a random plane crash out of nowhere, and the main character being sucked into a book seemed non sequitur. The new version of the tale has a more fleshed out story about the importance of the book, and it made the story more cohesive.
The new version also implements one of the DLC worlds from the VR version into the main game, which I’m glad it did because I think the game was just the right amount of length. Without Gilland’s Island in the main game, it certainly would have felt like something was missing.
To help prevent consumer confusion like this in the future, I would recommend that developers do not use the word “New” on an updated version of an old game. Call it Definitive Edition, Non-Virtual Edition, Console Edition, or something to signify it’s the same game with significant updates rather than a new game.
About mid-way into the second streaming session I had forgotten about my gripes about the animation changes, particularly when I go to the second world where redneck worms ask you, as a fox, to round up chickens for them. The irony of the situation was a major highlight of my playthrough as the premise is delightful.
The missions are very atmospheric and work with the themes as well. One level in the rural worm village has you helping gather members of a musical band whose name has obvious inspirations from O Brother Where Art Thou’s Soggy Bottom Boys. After you go on your odyssey of getting them all together you get a short cutscene of the hoedown. In another spooky carnival world, there is a level that has you completing carnival games to gain tickets to pay your way and collect prizes, which include the page needed to complete the level.
This makes entering each level unique as you don’t know what you will need to do to get the final page and it seems like you are on an adventure within a community with fun characters. I enjoy this as it doesn’t feel isolating and lonely. You are helping resolve problems of friendly peaceful communes from the hindrances of wicked felines. This is a big reason that I would recommend, despite the lack of challenge. These levels were a joy to experience.