This old Splosion still has kick to it.
Not being a Microsoft devotee and in spite of some positive buzz, I didn’t come across Ms. Splosion Man’s original release. This sequel to Twisted Pixel’s Splosion Man, another title I overlooked at the time, appear to be very similar to each other, but his presumed wife is the one that decided to make the journey into the Switch library.
Ms. Splosion Man is a strange science experiment gone wrong with a radioactively bright pink body and a stereotypically ditzy femininity. You can jump (excuse me, “explode”) up to three times before needing to reach ground to recharge. Each successive explosion propels you less far, incentivizing the use of wall panels and exploding barrels strategically placed along each segment to propel her the proper distance. This is a platformer, plain and simple. Each level requires the use of explosions to navigate a variety of obstacles or timing puzzles to reach the end of the level, which is literally a finish line you’ll dance into with light up disco floor panels.
Obstacles develop including navigating moving platforms and stringing together chains of events that rival Rube Goldberg machines. General movement and jumping feels imprecise at times and Ms. Splosion Man feels a little too sticky when wall jumping, but is easy enough to get used to. Approaching what looks like an impossibly complicated obstacle and figuring out what sequence of events completes it is very rewarding.
Personality is injected into every second of the experience – an intro with a manic Looney Tunes sensibility is a highlight. She walks while finger-wagging, cycles through different dances when idle, babbles various pop culture phrases old and new, and obnoxiously yells and whoops. Even loading screens have a bizarrely random humor with “tips” about shoes and beef mixed in with general game tips. Mercifully, one of those tips let me know how I could mute her entirely.
Trading heavily on its style and forced joking as if trying to paper-over its insecurity, Ms. Splosion Man is a gratifying 2D platformer with reasonably challenging gameplay. If a crazed sense of humor is appealing or at least tolerable, then you’re going to have a blast.