Platformers are that strange section of the gaming medium that while I’ve played an abundance of them I’ve never found myself treating them as anything other than a means of escape for an hour or so before delving back into whatever first-person shooter or dialogue-driven game I’m playing at the time. Even the likes of Super Mario Bros. on the Nintendo DS, while being one of my favourite games on the device never held my attention for more than 30-40 minutes at a time. So when I say Grapple Dog, developed by Medallion Games and published by Super Rare Originals managed to keep me returning for more and more content hour after hour I have to imagine it sparked a deep interest in gaming mind.
The aesthetics and premise were intriguing to me from the get-go. I mean, who doesn’t love dogs? Better yet, who doesn’t love a good grappling hook in a game? Combine those two elements together and you’ve got me on your good side already. Grapple Dog presented me with a fun and accessible 2D platforming landscape that despite replaying on multiple occasions has still managed to capture every semblance of joy I have as I hop from jump pad to jump pad, bouncing on the heads of any enemies that come into my path.
The story of Grapple Dog is not something I overly paid attention to. I enjoyed the game’s humour but besides that, I never found myself ever heavily wanting to engage in it. The story is definitely heartwarming and endearing at times but I really appreciated the game’s allowance for the player to almost forego it completely. When sitting down to play Grapple Dog I knew I wanted to get straight into each level and just have fun and the game absolutely allows you to do that. When I mention that I bypassed most of the narrative elements of the game that is certainly not in an attempt to diminish the developer’s writing instead I believe the writer should be praised for providing the option for players to experience the title in the way they see fit.
Excellent Movement and Gameplay
Grapple Dog’s gameplay is simplistic but has moments of real challenge. Mastering each jump and grapple as you make your way through the various challenge stages was a real treat and offered me the chance to really test my ability. On the other hand, if I was just looking to have a relaxing time platforming through each level that option was always left open to me. Similar to my praise of Flynn: Son Of Crimson I believe that games that provide the player with an accessible base campaign and the option to test their knowledge of the game’s mechanics in optional side challenges are really something to be treasured. I got a real kick out of searching for every collectable in each level but found myself extremely fulfilled upon completing one of the challenge areas.
Grapple Dog is simplistic perfection with countless hours of platforming fun! For any fans of 2D platformers, this is a must-play. The game is filled with fun and accessible gameplay mechanics, an upbeat and vibrant visual aesthetic and a large level of replayability. Grapple Dog is currently £11.99 on Steam and the Nintendo eShop.
We were provided with a PC game code for Grapple Dog for review purposes, but this does not affect the authenticity of the praise or criticism the game received. If you’d like to keep up to date with all of our upcoming reviews, news, and features here at Gaming Sandbox, feel free to follow us on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn. If you’d like to support us financially you can do so by following the link to our Patreon!