In November 2017 whilst perusing Imgur, I stumbled upon a series of short video showcasing a video game work in progress.
The videos, showcased throughout this review, showed an exciting amount of fluidity and control. Each moment was beautifully exampled in slow motion, with fluid gun control, evasion and execution of multiple targets whilst performing tumbles, back flips and matrix levels of parkour.
I tempered my initial excitement from November 2017. These were curated videos provided by developers to showcase the best parts of the game. Surely the entire game isn’t this awesome?
I’ll cut to the chase; it really, really is.
My Friend Pedro is a shoot em up game developed by DeadToast Entertainment and published by Devolver Digital. The premise is simple; your friend, Pedro, is a sentient, imaginary Banana. He wants you to go on a path of mayhem, destruction and violence against bad people. Who are you to argue with Pedro?
As a side-scroller style shoot-em up, the controls are extremely familiar and easy to grasp. One stick for movement, the other for aiming. The player is able to aim at multiple targets whilst dual welding weapons.
Completion of each level is based upon reaching the end. Replay-ability comes int he form of a scoring system based upon time, kills and combos via the artistic flair used to eliminate the enemy. Whilst C grade scores allow you to progress, many will strive for the best score possible.
Where My Friend Pedro truly shines is the incredible level of fluidity within movement and gun play. The amount of slow motion time provided within the game is extremely lavish, allowing the player to clear full areas of enemies in beautiful, matrix-esque style and grace. My Friend Pedro creates wonderful moments to showcase this fluidity. Level design ensures the player is provided the ability to continue forward momentum and destruction.
Each interaction feels expertly choreographed, and every action feels intentional. There is a level of fluidity with movement that is extremely impressive for a game of this style. Within minutes I was producing hollywood style action sequences and dispatching multiple enemies at once. My Friend Pedro is John Wick on steroids and it’s wonderful to control.
The retrowave soundtrack is perfect and feels right at home with a Hotline Miami style of speed, violence and momentum. Novel ways of killing enemies such as decapitation by basketball or bullet ricochet tech bonuses via skillet pans inject a dark humour.
I’m really struggling to say anything that these clips aren’t already stating. Look at it. LOOK AT IT! How awesome is this?
My Friend Pedro could have easily have rested on the laurels of smart mechanics. Additional levels however feature vehicle chases, vertical gunfight levels whilst falling from a building and even subconscious Pedro-world bizarre dream states. These all provide a wonderful narrative and build upon the gun play mechanics with clever level design.
I felt apprehensive embedding ‘work in progress’ clips from the developers imgur posts from November 2017. They still however convey the incredible moments that keep you hooked for more.
With a scoring system that begs for replays and inventive combo creations, My Friend Pedro is a must purchase for shoot-em-up fans.
My Friend Pedro review was on Nintendo Switch.