Better known for their smash hit Mobile games such as Land-A Panda, Off the Leash and Piyo Blocks, Big Pixel Studios have decided to turn their attention to the consoles with Mega Coin Squad being released onto the Xbox One, having previously made it’s debut on Steam back in 2014.
Published by Adult Swim Games, Mega Coin Squad is another addition to the hugely popular ID@Xbox Program that keeps on reeling out classic game after classic game. Big Pixel Studios pay homage to the retro classic arcade games of the 80’s with the look and feel of a modern day game to bring it up to date. It’s a fast paced, frantic, 2D platforming game where the sole aim is to make it through rounds collecting and banking a set amount of coins while attempting to fend off various enemies.
Chunk AKA Chuck Norris with full beard
The game itself is made up of four different worlds with Green Valley, Desert Plains, Snow City and Lava Land. Each world is broken down into rounds which need to be navigated before the final round of each world which consists of a straight out fight between the chosen character and random enemies from that particular world.
From the main menu there are five different characters to choose from with Data, Mouth, Stef, Mikey and Chunk, each with varying abilities to help you through the game. There is an extra character in Robot Unicorn that can be unlocked upon completing the game, which is a very handy addition because of the high stats that come with it.
With the single player campaign you start out in Green Valley which is fairly simple to navigate through, the first round has you only needing to pick up one hundred and fifty coins before using the money bank which comes in the shape of a gloriously big pink pig to cash your coins. There are many enemies around that can knock lives and coins off you if they get too close but can largely be avoided with a quick dash or using the shoot button. All rounds other than the final fights are all timed with the option to unlock added time after each round.
There is no chance of regaining lost lives which makes the game even more challenging but there are other ways of defending yourself and they come in the form of Power Ups. Little blocks in each round with the letter P on the front can be hit and then picked up to give you a small added advantage, they come in the form of Assault Rifles, Rocket Launchers and Grenade Launchers and replace your usual shoot action with pretty devastating effect.
The map layout is a little Mario’ish
There are other power ups that can aid you to fill your coin quota with a magnet that when picked up pulls all coins in the near vicinity to the player which can help greatly in the later levels when the difficulty and coin requirement is considerably bigger then at the start. Each round is beautifully unique and the colour of the game really brings it to life. It really does have the feel of an arcade machine game you’d happily put money into time and time again and at the end of the day isn’t that what gets most hardened gamers going, the feel of walking into an arcade shop and wasting pocket money trying to beat games and set high scores.
Aside from the coin collecting goal there are some side objectives with the same three side objectives for each main round with gems acquired for each one completed. They revolve around time, how quick you can finish each round. Banking the required coins all at the same time which can be extremely difficult later on in the game where the landscape becomes more dangerous and then finally completing the round without a loss of life.
Use the dash both up and sideways for devastating results
In between each round is the chance to unlock new power ups or add more power to your dash and ground pound with a roulette wheel to be used depending on how many objectives you successfully completed in the previous round. If you manage to finish all three side challenges you will get three different spins of the wheel. These upgrades can make the characters abilities stronger, so if you chose a character based on speed that might be a little weak with the power you are going to want to upgrade ground pound.
Mega Coin Squad isn’t just a single player game, it also has a fantastic multiplayer mode where four players can compete against each other locally with different modes where anything goes in a race to collect valuable coins, it all makes for a great little couch game with friends.
The multiplayer mode can be really enjoyable with friends
Overall Mega Coin Squad is a simple yet beautifully colourful 2D platformer that brings out the real arcade kid in a gamer. Dashing and punching while grabbing coins with the wide range of enemies trying to leave you skint is a lot of fun and keeps you on your toes. The single player campaign as a whole might be quite short but there are hours of endless fun to be had with friends in the local multiplayer modes and the campaign can be repeated with the numerous characters available. It’s a very welcome addition to the already much loved ID@Xbox Program titles and should cement Big Pixel Studios as console game developers in the future.