Genre: Platformer | 3D Side Scroller
Modes: Single Player
Developed by: HardBoiled Studios
Published by: Hitcents
Release date: April 6 2023
Platforms: Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC, macOS
Platform I played on: PC (Steam)
Thanks to HardBoiled Studios and Hitcents for the review code!
Eggs? Check. Anthropomorphic eggs? Check. Sense of humour and full of puns? Check. This was really all I needed to know that I would probably enjoy this game, and I did. I've been waiting on a fun, goofy game like this to come around again. So, other than egg puns, why eggactly did I enjoy this game? Well here's why - hold on to your spatulas.
Become the egg
Yolked is a kinetic, 3D physics platformer where you take control of an egg. Not just any egg though, you're an anthropomorphic egg that has tiny arms. Why are you an anthropomorphic egg though, you may ask? Well in a short cutscene when you first start the game, you can see that someone is eggsperimenting on eggs, but soon you escape, and that's where the game begins. Your goal throughout this game is to escape from one environment to the other, with many hazards to avoid.
In terms of the story, it's really just that cutscene at the start of the game, alongside environmental storytelling as you go through each environment. This includes audio recordings, letters, clippings, books and of course, other eggs in various predicaments. Whether it be in cages, in a microwave (there's also an achievement for microwaving a fellow egg lol) or holding onto dear life, there's always something going on in the background which makes it that much more fun.
Are you not egg-tertained?
As far as gameplay goes, it's all around a smooth, minimal control experience with lots of fun to be had. Each environment has it's own set of challenges to keep things fresh, unique and to keep your attention. It's simple gameplay on paper, but you've got to be quick and time your next move, otherwise it's a cracked .. scrambled egg for you!
In each environment you'll be climbing, swinging, flinging and holding on for dear life. On occasion, you'll also have an obstacle trying to crack you - such as sharp objects or a utensil. These will have a shadow or an X so you can see it coming, but you'll have just seconds to avoid it. Depending on what difficulty you play on, if you bump into a certain amount of obstacles too many times, you'll crack your egg. A few cracks are fine, but once it your egg cracks completely, you'll have to restart at the previous checkpoint. Each checkpoint is an egg cup that will also cleanse you of any minor cracks you had previously. The game highly recommends playing with a controller, but if you so wish to play with keyboard you can still do that. As I always mention, I usually play PC games with a controller so this was no issue for me.
Thankfully, while it can be challenging and extremely chaotic at times, it doesn't feel like a chore. Checkpoints can sometimes be just in your grasp before you get cracked by an oncoming sharp object, or trying to avoid said sharp objects and instead getting slapped by a utensil. The humour makes it all worth while (and maybe hurt a little less when you miss the grab). The only section I was really stuck on for a while with was up in the attic/lab. There's a part where you have to escape from a robotic spider, and as you're on a corkboard there's various obstacles in the way which made it difficulty to manoeuvre in general. Eventually as I persisted I got past it, but wow it was genuinely intense at times, as the spider is very quick to catch up to you.
I also still found myself getting into situations, especially if I was cross armed or something and, by instinct I clicked the wrong arm and I either got myself cracked or fell. It's not a bad thing by any means, just worth mentioning that yes, it is simple controls but it can mess with you at times - especially if there's a lot going on with obstacles to avoid.
If you want to put yourself on the clock and challenge yourself further, you can have an on screen timer, an on screen death counter, and an on screen health counter if you choose. Perfect for those who enjoy speed running, too. Of course, there are also collectibles, such as costumes and skins, scattered throughout each environment to find. Some are simple to spot, but some will require a bit more effort. Oh, and there's an endless mode you can sink hours into, and a leader board you can check. Think you've got what it takes to be the ultimate egg with arms?
As the controls are minimal, it also feels like any type of player can jump in and play it, which is always welcome to get more players on board.
A cartoonish, amusing art design that would make me want to watch a tv series about this egg. Each environment feels and looks different with a specific colour palette. and overall tone of said environment. From a creepy dark lab to vibrant garden. I can't think of any instance where I didn't enjoy the art design. It's eggactly how it's supposed to be, being the game that it is.
Soundtrack | Sound Design - Let's get ready to scrraammbbleeee
It's worth noting that throughout the game, your egg will make some sounds from time to time. From cheering with excitement when you've been flung into the air, to a change of tone when you completely miss the object you were supposed to grab onto, and scream for dear life as you near the floor to meet your cracked fate (rip). Most objects also have their own sound effect, and adds to the cartoonish, goofiness of the game.
The soundtrack is upbeat and light-hearted with the use of cheerful piano, drums and various high pitched instruments. I would describe the soundtrack to be similar to something such as Two Point Campus, I am Bread and even Banjo-Kazooie to an extent. In some sections of the game it can get a little more dark, and in this instance these tracks sound similar to Little Nightmares. It's a perfectly crafted soundtrack weaved into this eggcellent game.
Glitches | Bugs | Issues - No major cracked eggs here
As far as any technical issues go, I believe I only had one minor one. It was when I went to quit to the main menu, and for some reason it didn't. Rather, it just stayed on the quit to main menu square for a few moments while my egg was still alive and being attacked. Thankfully this didn't last too long and it never occurred again. Other than that, it seems pretty polished on my end. Considering it also came out of early access last month, it's but nothing but smooth on my end. Of course as I say in all my reviews though, this isn't to say there aren't any at all, I just haven't experienced anything game breaking or major.
Length | Replay ability
It'll take roughly around 3-5 hours (depending on your difficulty/playstyle) to finish the main campaign. There is definitely a lot of replay ability here, including the fact there's quite a few collectibles to seek throughout.
As I mentioned in the gameplay section of this review, the game wants you to speed run and stream to your hearts content. You can have an screen timer, an on screen death counter, and an on screen health counter. If you're ready for your next challenge for a speed run, Yolked is the answer.
The final Verd-eggt
If you enjoyed other goofy physics based titles such as Moving Out, Getting over it or I am Bread, there's a high chance you're going to enjoy this egg title. It's quirky, fun and you play as an egg - what's not to like? It may seem like a short main campaign with not a heap of story cutscenes as such, but there's still a tonne of replay ability, and three difficulty settings to challenge yourself with. Whether you're wanting to stream and speed run to climb up the leader board, or to just have some casual fun, Yolked is perfect for any type of player. ALL HAIL THE E G G