Hell Pie (is a near perfect concoction of 3D collectathon goodness)
Okay I’ll just say it straight up out in front, this is as good as any modern 3D platformer like Hat in Time or Yooka Laylee. Hell Pie going right for the Conker approach and doing in your face adult humor combined with a really unique aesthetic and movement mechanics make this a hard recommend from me.
|First Time Playing||Yup|
|100% Completion||Yes, aside from costumes|
|Fun||9 / 10|
|Crude Humor||10 / 10|
|Jank||3 / 10|
Hell Pie is a collectathon platformer that is not unlike something like Banjo-Kazooie, Super Mario 64, Yooka Laylee, Hat in Time, etc, but what it most compares to is Conker’s Bad Fur Day. I don’t want to give away too much of the characters/jokes because that is half the fun, but I’ll give you the jist of what makes the game great.
You play as Nate who has been given the task of collecting ingredients for the CEO of Sin Inc’s birthday (assumedly The Devil), and you must go to different worlds and complete different objectives to gather everything The Cook needs. You are chained to a cherub in a cage named Nugget who is both your weapon and your grappling hook (more on that later). The ingredients are essentially the “stars” or “jiggies” of the game, usually given after doing a series of tasks. Each world is very… not-very-Hell-like, but are all very different from each other.
That said, there are only 4 worlds (5 if you count the hub world of Sin Inc, which I guess I would because it has it’s own hidden worlds), which seems like a downer at first. But considering the amount of stuff in them (aside from maybe the last one) and the teleporters and ways to travel in them, it doesn’t really feel “small” and at around the end of the 3rd world you might as well have unlocked everything. In each world there are 2-3 linear based levels with their own set of collectables and ingredients.
Nate can do all the things you think he can do, which is jump and double jump. Through different horns you unlock (by sacrificing animals), you can get different abilities like Sprinting, Ramming, Gliding, Light, etc. Honestly I found most of these to be underwhelming considering the ones you use most are Sprinting and Ramming. The Light is really only useful for exactly areas it’s designed for (to open up gates that give you Blue Fire-like voids), and the zipline horns feels like something Nugget should do.
Oh Nugget. Sweet Nugget. Nugget acts as a graple swing you can use anytime in the game. You can upgrade this for up to 4 swings without touching the ground (5 if you can wait till he recharges one), and THIS RIGHT HERE is what makes the game. If you can get good at this grapple mechanic, you can break the game, easily. Combined with the spring shoes, and very careful timing of when you let go of Nugget, you can go VERY FAR or HIGH.
Then the game throws you stuff like this:
That remind you that the mechanics aren’t super perfect and could be more streamlined. Thankfully these moments are very few.
- After I got the sprint horns, I barely used anything else. I even forgot Nate had the OG uhh “Finder” horns until the end of the game. I get they were trying to do the same thing Hat in Time does, but I compeltely forgot about them (and they don’t help you find candymeat/cats/unicorns anyways)
- There is no (or I couldn’t find) any Totals screen from pause menu. You have to go to each level and use the map to see whats left in that area. It would be great if there was just a counter from Sin Inc, even if it was just from hovering over the Hellevator on the map screen.
- There are a few too many spots where swinging with Nugget just stops/cancels out, usually when you hit a wall. A couple of these made me feel like the death wasn’t my fault.
- I was able to get out of bounds a few times, but to no advantage.
- Some of the unicorns/candymeat/golden cats weren’t very visible from far away. Yes yes I know that’s the point, but when I’m going for 100% and I’m trying to find THAT ONE LITTLE PIECE, I eventually had to use a guide to checklist the ones I’ve found.
I highly HIGHLY recommend Hot Pie for anyone who likes satisfying platforming or collectathons. The HELL aethetic and different characters and demons is very original and finding all the easter eggs and secrets was a total blast. I haven’t had this much fun with a platfomer since Blue Fire. If you loved Conker’s Bad Fur Day, you’ll love this and should totally give it a go.