The premise is simple, what if an egg was jacked?
To answer this question comes the platformer game YOLKED - The Egg Game, the first release from HardBoiled Studios, which is out in Early Egg-cess on Steam at the end of 2021 via Hitcents. There's a planned full release on PC and Nintendo Switch in 2022.
They say to make an omelet you have to break a few eggs. Hopefully, the same isn't true for making your escape. This pun-loaded platformer puts players in the arms of one egg's destiny, by literally attaching those two arms to it and making it jump. A 2.5D physics-based platformer, with 3D slapstick shenanigans in the background, from stovetop to secret lab, YOLKED has you use your protein pumped arms to grab on to its scalable surfaces, swinging and scrambling towards the next obstacle.
Taking place across stages made up of stylishly cartoonish and outsized domestic set-pieces, it's scored with jazz straight from Saturday morning TV shows and has the same kind of cartoon violence sensibilities. You will see your fellow eggs meet the sharp end of a knife repeatedly, if just to learn what hazards await you, and might even end up dealing a couple of fatal blows too. Checkpoints appear as little egg cups in-between the most perilous passages, and you'll come back sitting in one each time you reload.
These reloads will likely happen often if you aren't careful, since the controls take some getting used to, and the way is full of tough-to-crack pitfalls that need strong hand-egg coordination to avoid. You could be splatted by an incoming spatula, pierced by a well-aimed dart, blown apart by a strong stream of ketchup, or take a big fall Humpty Dumpty style. It's a jaunty obstacle course game that will fill a few hours and ends up being like the children of Chicken Run meeting Getting Over It over a fried breakfast.
"You never know what you'll find with a bit of exploration."
Using your skills to explore YOLKED's stages beyond just heading for the exit is advised since there's more than just escape on the menu. Along the way, you'll find a bunch of collectible outfits to equip, from the Devilled Egg to the Wireframe, all featured in a catalog of silhouetted costumes that tells you how hard each one is to find, giving hints for how to do so. Each different outfit is a fully new look for the egg, from those featuring a painted shell and egg-cessories, to some that defy the natural order of things just as much as your robotic arms.
While light on a story by design, foregrounding acrobatic antics, there is a narrative playing out in the set-dressing of YOLKED's backgrounds that ties your reason for escaping to the fowl antics of a disgraced egg scientist. How did they give an egg arms and a will to use them? Are you the result of an eggs-periment gone wrong, or right? What has all of this got to do with Gucci level family business feuds? It's all there somewhere in YOLKED, while you're swinging on the cages of your fellow eggs in order to find out, or just to reach that floating green mohawk collectible.
Should you shell out for YOLKED?
Overall, YOLKED is a fun, good-looking, and challenging obstacle course platformer, with a rewarding set of collectibles. It is set to be as charming a game about an egg with human arms can be, and hopefully, its updates and release will only add to that effect.
TechRaptor previewed YOLKED on Steam with a copy provided by the publisher.