Review: Pigsy’s Perfect 10

Pigsy's Perfect Ten 5Pigsy’s Perfect 10 is the DLC bundled in with the recently ported (and recently reviewed by me) Enslaved: Odyssey to the West Premium Edition. It’s what makes it so premium. It’s one of the best pieces of DLC I’ve ever played. It might actually be better than the game that spawned it.

Rather than reprising the role of Monkey from the main game, Pigsy’s Perfect 10 sees you playing the eponymous Pigsy, on a quest to assemble enough scrap parts to build himself a new robot friend. With his squat frame, jiggling belly and filthy mind, Pigsy is the antithesis of the standard video game hero – and he’s certainly completely different to the Herculean and acrobatic Monkey. Appropriately, he plays differently – in fact, the game’s mechanics have been totally redesigned to suit.

Where Monkey would run in swinging his fists, Pigsy relies on stealth and his trusty sniper rifle. If an enemy closes on you, you’re done – too fat to run, too soft to withstand their harsh metal blows. To keep them at bay you have an arsenal of gadgets, including decoys, bombs, EMPs and more. You’re really forced to think strategically – with so little recourse if you screw up, clever use of your inventory becomes vital. It’s immensely satisfying; each enemy you lure into a cunning trap, or catch unawares with one of your devices and pick off with a quick headshot, feels like a triumph, like you really outsmarted your opponents in the face of overwhelming adversity.

Pigsy's Perfect Ten 4It’s not just the gameplay – nearly every aspect of the game has been tweaked. Enslaved‘s dramatic score is replaced with upbeat banjo twang; cutscenes are more stylised, with a ‘hand-painted’ look; and the writing is funnier and lighter, while holding on to just enough of Enslaved‘s emotional punch to provide an affecting character arc. All the environments are brand new, different sections of Pigsy’s colossal junkyard, and just as beautiful as those in the main game.

It’s Pigsy himself who really steals the show. The relatively limited time you spend with him in Enslaved really had me wanting more, and the DLC does not disappoint. It really feels like actor Richard Ridings is given more of a chance to inhabit the character than in the main game, and it’s a joy to hear him deliver the consistently clever dialogue. The animations compliment his performance perfectly – even more so than Monkey, Pigsy’s personality is captured in his every movement and action, from scrabbling over a wall to assembling a bomb. Just his run animation alone had me grinning from ear-to-ear throughout, a frantic off-kilter waddle that you can’t help but love. Accompanying Pigsy on his quest is robot companion Truffles, a beeping, hovering creature that looks like a Mac with wings, and communicates solely through blurry emoticons. He’s immensely charming, and a perfect compliment to Pigsy, giving him someone to riff to without ever stealing the limelight.

Pigsy's Perfect Ten 3Pigsy’s Perfect 10 is DLC done right. Rather than pointlessly extending the main game beyond its natural lifespan, or worse seemingly like it was surgically removed from the main game for a dirty profit, it feels like a genuine side-story, a fun new experiment in the same world. In many ways it actually manages to be a more satisfying experience than Enslaved itself – a seriously impressive feat. Though it was originally made in 2008, with this re-release I think it’s a strong contender for the best DLC of 2013.

5/5

Pigsy's Perfect Ten 1

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Posted in Reviews, Video Games

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