If you were a child in the 90s, there's a chance you had the opportunity to wake up on a Saturday morning, head to the TV, and catch episodes of a cartoon show that will forever be carved in your brain wrinkles. Maybe the show was funny, cool, or so grotesque that you couldn't take your eyes off it. Thus was born the style of the Saturday morning cartoon that would define a whole genre of 90s animation. It has a strong nostalgic hold, and Buttery Games is taking it by the hand to bring it over to mobile games as Floop's Big House Adventure. Stroll through the cluttered TV home and shoot monsters messing up what is already a perfectly good mess.
If you remember 90s cartoons, most episodes were independent stories so you could jump into a random one and immediately get or not get what was going on and still enjoy it. Floop's Big House Adventure embodies this quite well. You play as what can only be called Floop - I mean, just look at that guy - who finds themselves in a big house. Why Floop's house is so big that it can host an adventure doesn't matter, because what does matter is that there are monsters. Acting out of self-defence, Floop pulls out a gun and starts firing at anything that moves, and considering that many of the monsters are blob-like, they'll always be moving. It's up to you and Floop to deal with the infestation and hopefully make sense of this mess.
The goal of a cartoon show is not only to entertain but to leave an impression - something that lingers in the mind. With the way Floop's Big House Adventure looks and plays, it'll stay in your head for quite some time. The art style earns praise right from the gate to the point where I almost looked up whether this was based on a show that I sadly overlooked. It uses an established and distinct style to create its world, rules, and, of course, creatures. You'd be hard-pressed to play this game while enjoying a bowl of concentrated sugar orbs masquerading as cereal.
Like a cartoon should be, there's a level of variation and randomness in what you encounter. You never know what the next monster is going to be or what it's going to do. The powerups are a mix of nostalgic references and weird gizmos that you'll feel inclined to touch purely out of curiosity. The number of weapons Floop can find is large, and you get the option to switch frequently while monster hunting. Should you make it to a boss, you'll get to fight one-on-one against all its gross glory.
The more a game does right, the more closely you look at it and notice things that it could do better or that it straight up needs to fix. Floop's Big House Adventure has some foundation problems that warrant the call of a handyman. The one that sticks out most is the issue of conveyance.
Every collectible (save for Tacos) is a mystery until you pick it up. While this can be fine early on, it starts to work against you the further you get into the game. If you get a weapon that does heavy damage on level one, why change it for a mysterious brand-new weapon that appears on level four? If I want a power-up that improves my fire speed, do I go with the controller or the shark missile, and do either of them actually improve speed?
As another small aside, the boss designs are different, but many of them have been taking the same classes. Several of them plant themselves in the same spot and use the same attacks that you can master within the first few seconds of seeing it. They might change up the patterns a bit to mess with you, but it's like putting an extra sugar cube in your coffee and seeing if you notice.
Floop's Big House Adventure is a 2D arena shooter for mobile based on cartoons from the 90s that many of us still remember fondly to this day. It's a thoughtful nostalgia trip that takes you along the road of colourful and slightly unnerving animation, while creating its own thing and presenting a fun challenge with a lot of asset variety to keep your cereal from going stale.
From a game standpoint, the conveyance can cause some progression problems and the dependable physical-now-touchscreen controls can turn on you if you get too into it. Overall, this is a title worth checking out if only to get a glance at the weirdness that used to be and that we could use more of today. We're all Floops on an adventure for our own big houses.