Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout E3 2019 Hands-On Preview

Mediatronic’s Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout is a game that I never knew I wanted so much. As the developers I talked with have put it, The Fall Guys is like Gang Beasts meets Takeshi’s Castle. The premise immediately intrigued me and I was eager to get my hands on it at this year’s E3.

The concept is simple, you and 99 other players have to play through over a dozen different minigames. Over time, if you fail in the minigames, you will be culled and only the best will go on to the final stage and try to grab the victory crown.

While the developers did use the phrase “battle royale” I would have to disagree with that notion. Instead, I would say that Fall Guys is a perfect example of a “party royale”.

The game on the surface clearly wears a lot of its inspiration from Gang Beasts on its sleeve, and I do not think that is a bad idea. However, the game is very much its own beast.

As we played through three of the game’s challenges, I felt a childlike wonder and bliss. I could not help but let my mind wander off to how much fun the game will be with friends.

That is probably why I unfortunately lost both matches I played in the game. Even so, though I was refused my chance to keep going until I won, no matter how many times that would take (a lot), I walked out of that demo enthusiastic for the final project.

The first challenge was simple, a hundred of us has to stand in front of several closed doors, and we had to run through them to get to the other side, but the trick was that only a handful of the doors would open.

As you passed by one set of doors, you would reach the second set, where there were not only less doors, but also fewer real doors. The beginning was chaotic, there was literally a hundred of us kicking, punching, diving, and grabbing at each other trying to fit through the small amount of doorways.

Since only a handful of us would survive to the next stage, it was a battle to the death just to try and clear the first stage. The developer who sat with me offered me a piece of advice: I’d be better off perhaps letting others jump go in front of me because they could test the doors for me.

I ignored his carefully laid out plan and ran my head right through the door like a professional wrestler, and that seemed to work out for me every time. On all three runs of this challenge, I managed to get 1st or 2nd place. I suppose my real talent may lay in picking doors that are unlocked or something.

The second challenge was a bit more interesting and much more challenging. Half of the survivors from the first round spawned in with tails and the other half did not.

If you had a tail you needed to survive the round with your tail intact, but if you did not have a tail, you needed to catch someone with a tail and yank it off and take it for yourself.

This was the challenge that got my heart racing. My strategy in these kinds of challenge modes is to hide in a corner and try to be in conspicuous, but there were times I just got surrounded like zombies eating a fat guy.

In fact, during our first run through of the game, I was able to survive up until the last 3 seconds when I had my tail stolen and was defeated. Despite the fact that I suffered an embarrassing defeat, I was laughing the whole time.

The third and final challenge of the E3 build was an obstacle course. The remaining participants had to make their way up an uphill maze, all the while dodging giant falling soccer balls, and spinning platforms.

At the top of the hill was a floating crown that you had to jump and grab onto the be crowned the winner. But if you missed the jump, you would land on a conveyor belt that would carry you about a third of the way down the hill and you would have to climb back up.

It got absolutely crazy as people tried to jump for the crown and just could not make it. Just as I was about to make my leap of faith, my sworn rival was able to leap like Michael Jordan in Space Jam over me, and placed his filthy hands on the crown, winning the game

I will be interested in what this small London-based dev has up their sleeves as they polish up their game to prepare for its 2020 release on Playstation 4 and PC.

I had so much fun with this demo build of the game, that I am happy to say that it was the best multiplayer game that I had the chance to play while in LA.

I have no doubt that me and my friends will pour dozens if not hundreds of hours into this game when it is out. I swear that one day I will challenge my rival, “Liefy Greens” again and this time, I will win! The ball is in your court now, buddy!



Tyler was a former Niche Gamer contributor.

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