Here’s a game that’s sure to make people go “‘aww” over how adorable the premise is. Penny is a little girl who refuses to go to sleep until all her stuffed animals are happy, and it falls on you, the player, to arrange them on a bed in such a way so that they are all satisfied.
Plush is a puzzle game where you need to take into account the different properties of the stuffed animals to figure out how they need to be arranged to make them all happy. Some of the puzzles are quite tricky and will offer a decent challenge. The game has a realistic 3d physics simulation, so as you drag the stuffed animals across the bed it can bump into another animal, and potentially send it flying off the bed.
The first few levels introduce you to the different types of animals and how to make them happy, such as the bears who need to be next to another animal to cuddle, or stinky skunks which need to be kept far away from the other animals. Some levels also have toy tanks which Penny’s brother left on her bed, and you need to knock them onto the floor in order for the animals to be happy. Many levels also have pillows laid out on the bed, which act as obstacles. Since they are completely impassable, it limits where you are able to move the animals.
Plush has 40 levels, which have different combinations of animals, and different pillow layouts. While this offers some variety in the levels, occasionally I came across a level that felt just a bit too similar to an earlier one. Its a bit hard to make every level feel distinct with relatively simple mechanics and just a handful of different animal types. After getting through about half the levels, the sense that you’ve seen everything the game has to offer starts to sink in.
If you feel like taking a break from solving the levels, Plush also offers a game mode called the Play Room. You start out with an empty bed and you can drop in as many animals as you wish of whatever type you wish. This offers a way to screw around with the physics engine, without trying to accomplish any particular goal, and can be pretty amusing. There is no hard upper limit on the number of animals you can spawn at a time, but performance will eventually start to drop once you get several hundred on screen at a time. You can create truly ridiculous piles of animals in this mode, and then send them all flying.
Obviously a big part of what makes or breaks this game for people is how much the theme appeals to them. Some might find the very idea of arranging stuffed animals for the amusement of a little girl to be cute, while others wouldn’t want to spend any time on it. The theme itself is well executed. Graphics, music, and tutorial text all do a great job of selling it. Penny will often make comments about the animals while you are playing through the levels, like telling you unicorns are picky, commenting on how stinky the skunk is, or making cat noises.
Overall Plush is pretty average. There is nothing really notably bad about the game, and the puzzle mechanics are solid. However the low number of animal types and the very limited space that the bed offers, holds back the game from offering too much variety, and eventually the levels start to seem too similar. This game is not revolutionary or groundbreaking, but if you find the theme appealing and are in the mood for a puzzle, it’s worth checking out.
This game was obtained from the developer and reviewed on the Linux platform.
You can purchase Plush on Steam.
A decent puzzle game that really sells its theme, but quickly grows old from a lack of variety.