Paper Monsters Recut review for Wii U

Platform: Wii U
Publisher: Mobot Studios
Developer: Mobot Studios
Medium: Digital
Players: 1
Online: No

If ever there was a game that perfectly illustrated where mobile gaming is in relation to consoles, Paper Monsters Recut would be it. After all, it’s making the jump from the App Store to the Wii U, which means that you don’t have to stretch much to make a comparison between the two.

The good news for mobile gaming — and for anyone interested in Paper Monsters Recut, for that matter — is that graphically the game stands up pretty well. It may not compare with, say, Super Mario 3D World, but it still has oodles and oodles of charm. Much like Tearaway (which, admittedly, is also a lot prettier), Paper Monsters Recut is set in a gorgeous papercraft world, one full of enemies and environments alike that look like they were lovingly cut and pasted by hand. It doesn’t quite pop off the screen like some of those other games, but at the same time, expecting Tearaway or SM3DW-level graphics from an indie game seems like a somewhat unfair demand.

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Unfortunately, Paper Monsters Recut also doesn’t measure up in the gameplay department, and this is a bit more of a problem. For starters, it moves a lot more slowly than most platformers. While I’m not saying that every game needs to move at Sonic-level speed to be enjoyable, there should at least be the feeling of fast movement when your onscreen character is running, and that doesn’t happen here. You’re not quite fighting with the controls, but it never feels very smooth. It’s especially noticeable because the game features sections where you’re moving via vehicle, and when that happens everything suddenly feels a lot more natural. It’s just a shame that the game only gives that to you in spurts, rather than all the time.

Of course, the good thing about those sections being spaced out is that they help to distract from the fact that there’s otherwise not a huge variety in gameplay. For the most part, this game features exactly the sort of action you’d expect from a platformer, but not much more. To be fair, it delivers that basic platforming experience with nothing but competence, but considering how the game breaks the mold when it comes to graphics, it would’ve been nice if it had taken a little more risks in what it asks players to do, too. It’s hard to tell how much of those limitations stem from the game’s iOS origins and how much of it just comes from the game being a little lacklustre in that area, but either way, it feels like it could have done more.

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Luckily for Paper Monsters Recut, however, it has enough of that aforementioned charm to get by, if only just. It’s not going to win many awards for gameplay, but it should be cute enough to keep a smile on your face, and for that reason, platforming fans should definitely give it a whirl.

Grade: B+