Fall Guys officially came out of beta 9 days ago into a full release, and the fast and growing success of the game shows that gamers still love simplicity.
The easiest definition of Fall Guys is that it’s a mini-game Battle Royale. It capitalizes on the current Battle Royale gaming genre success, but instead of killing to make it to the next round, you have to rank in the top % of players in a minigame to make it to the next round.
The fascinating part of Fall Guys success isn’t that a mini-game based game is successful. It’s that it shows among a sea of game developers trying to master ray tracing in AAA games and spending millions upon millions to produce a AAA game, that you can still become the same level of success by keeping it basic. This is something every gamer should be happy to see.
Gamers for as long as video games have existed enjoy playing with other people. It magnifies the experience. When you think about it, the games we played outside as kids were mini-games right? Even sports. It’s easy to see why it translates to that same fun in Fall Guys even as an adult. Fall Guys features a max starting amount of 60 players, in which you can queue with up to 3 other friends. (My hunch is this 4 party limit is to avoid larger party sizes throwing games to get crowns for their friends.) If you rank in the top amount of players in a mini game, you move on to the event until there is only one left.
Fall Guys provides a quick in-and-out experience where you can play a couple games within 10–15 minutes and get your quick gaming fix in, or you can make a night of it, get your friends on Discord, and watch the madness ensue.
This is by no means to diminish what Fall Guys is or to diminish the development of the game. When you load up the game or see Fall Guys for the first time, you can already understand that they took a dedicated approach to a simple style while having cute “bean” characters that you can dress up and swag out through a very consumer fair Battle Pass and in-game shop.
As mentioned before, the goal of the game is simple: Do well enough in the mini-games to make it to the final round. The mini-games can vary between a race, various team games, a survival of obstacles coming at you, and more. Once you make it to the final round, it’s winner take all. The winner gets a little more currency for outfits and skins, but also gets a unique currency known as a crown that is used to buy exclusive skins that can only be purchased through winning. (However, the Battle Pass progression system does award you a few crowns through the leveling up experience.) The developers had mentioned that they had a lot of inspiration from Rocket League’s item and shop system, which is very fair to consumers, but can still net them money in a manner that isn’t anti-consumer. You can grind the game without spending money and still get a fair amount of rewards.
What stands out about Fall Guys is that it understands what it is, and carries that through every aspect of the game. While there are skill based moments, this isn’t a skill based game. They’re mini-games that feature a lot of chaos due to the amount of players involved and the random elements included through player interaction and the maps interaction with you. Your character will trip over someone else on the ground, it will fall down if you jump from too high up, and while it carries a little bit of random elements through the movement, it doesn’t make it feel like you constantly get cheated in your movement.
However, getting cheated in a mini-game? Oh, expect a lot of that. Fall Guys features the ability to grab/lightly shove opponents. This leads to a lot of shenanigans, like holding someone before they’re forced to jump, making them fall down. You can grab someone on Slime Climb on the slippery slime right near the end of the match and knock them off, causing them to not qualify for the next round. Don’t complain about it either, because Fall Guys social media is ON THEIR GAME.
This seems like a modern adaptation of something like Mario Party or Fusion Frenzy, all wrapped up in a Battle Royale skin taking advantage of what players have grown to like nowadays with Battle Royale games. (Round based eliminations where each match feels different and carries a different experience.)
Gamers everywhere should be excited about Fall Guys breaking out. We could see more non-shooter games turn to a Battle Royale + Battle Pass experience. Some have speculated how fun it would be to have a fluid control based pure platforming Battle Royale. If that games exists down the line, Fall Guys could be a big reason why.
I can confidently say that Fall Guys is a tremendous experience that gets improved even more if you do have friends you can play with. When you do finally get a taste of that sweet victory where you had to endure the mini-games and your fellow competitors, you won’t forget what led to that victory, creating a truly unique experience every time you win or lose. You have to go in with the right mindset and understand that much like how life isn’t always fair, Fall Guys isn’t either. That’s the beauty of it, while still being loads of fun. Prepare for the madness and don’t forget to laugh, and maybe cry from the laughter too.