If you’ve been on the planet for some time and at least have a passing interest in games, the chances are you’ve played a game similar to Fluffy: Operation Overkill. Run, shoot, kill lots of things, rack up a decent score, move on and repeat. It’s an age old system that has proved successful for many arcade-type games for many years.
Fluffy takes the old, gives it a modern sprinkle and shoves it bloodily into your mitts. The animals of the forest have gone feral, and it’s up to you to deal with the beastly threat. Taking control over the squirrel-in-a-hazmat-suit, Fluffy, each level leads you through a side scrolling bloodbath through caves, forests and pastures, literally gunning down every enemy that you see.
More often than not you’ll find yourself fighting off hoards of bears, who, for the most part, are the main enemy in Fluffy. As the game goes on though, you’ll experience a variety of enemies, from frogs that jump out of ponds and follow up by chasing you and moles that attack from the ground upwards. Operation Overkill is so relentless (there’s barely a second where you aren’t shooting at something) that the change in enemy is a reliving change of pace. The environment can also play a part in trying to bring you to your death too, with falling ceilings in caves and acid-spitting plants you’re never too far away from meeting a grizzly death.
Fluffy has a bagful of toys that he drags around with him, from machine guns to bigger weapons that cause ridiculous amounts of damage. If anything though, you’ll notice the absolute carnage you cause as you go through blowing everything up. It’s ridiculously gruesome, and every enemy leaves a trail of entrails, bloody stumps and blood splatters as they’re killed, but it’s all part of the ridiculous entity that is Fluffy: Operation Overkill.
One of the things that makes old-school side-scrollers brilliant is the epic boss battles, and Fluffy is no exception, successfully incorporating great boss fights for such a small independent title. While they stick to the typical Fluffy structure of shoot, run, shoot, boss battles are brilliant fun and the bosses themselves look gnarly for little cartoon-y monsters.
Operation Overkill is horribly difficult. I mean, seriously, this game is so punishing that you’ll find yourself hitting the retry button every few seconds. The amount of enemies that fill the screen at once mixed with the very little life you have often spells disaster. Thankfully, you have a slow down time power that comes in useful when things get truly ridiculous, but it still doesn’t stop it being really bloody hard. You fall down a hole, you’re dead. You get hit too many times by an enemy, you die. Certain enemies run into you, you die. You’ll become accustomed to dying in Fluffy, so learning from your mistakes is something you need to do early on.
Fluffy gets old fast, and after a while you’ll grow tired of shooting, running, shooting, dying and, well, running, and it really offers little replay value. The game comes with a survival mode, where you fight zombified enemies in wave forms to achieve victory. Sadly though, it’s not something that you’ll revisit often as it offers nothing that the main game hasn’t already covered. In fact, there’s probably more to gain from simply revisiting the main game again which offers a faster change of pace and more varied environments compared to the horde-style bonus option.
While many Indie games go for a smarter, more professional style, the developers of Fluffy have gone for a more tongue in cheek, silly art style that more or less works. While it looks like it’s been drawn on MS Paint, and the colour pallet of pretty much entirely primary colours may look a little unappealing, you are wielding a shotgun at angry bears, playing as a squirrel in a suit; does it really need to be overly pretty? In fact, it gives the game a unique charm that will appeal to those looking for a ridiculous gun-toting romp.
That’s what you really get with Fluffy. It’s mind-numbing fun that can be picked up and played whenever playing a ‘real’ game becomes too serious. While it’s repetitive and far from polished, Fluffy is simple and silly and worth a play if you want a seriously punishing, brutal challenge.
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