Mix and switch and match.
Joggernauts is a strange kettle of fish. One that will no doubt have you screaming at one another in frustration much in the same vein as the Overcooked! series. Beneath the surface it houses a simple idea of matching colours – the gameplay, however, is one that will take you through many, many stages of trial and error.
The idea behind Joggernauts is to reach the end of each level using all manner of coordination and determination to match the colours of your characters to whichever obstacle may be in front of you. Think of it as a small queue, but one that is continuously moving. There are 9 characters to choose from, although not all are available from the start. You’ll unlock the complete set as you progress through the 3 worlds on offer.
You can play in single player or local multiplayer – it’s very clear though once you’ve played a couple of levels on your lonesome that the game is very much designed for company. It’s not impossible, but it’s certainly not as fun and coordinating the colour switches can be quite fiddly in later levels.
Your characters will walk continuously in a line and each one is a different colour. All you have to do is remember to press one of two commands: change or jump. The first will place you at the front of the line and the second is pretty self explanatory, you’ll be reaching elevated platforms and avoiding obstacles with carefully timed jumps. Certain obstacles or platforms are coloured either blue, pink, green or purple and you’ve got to make sure the right colour is at the front of the line at the exact moment you hit them. It’s a lot trickier in action!
Each player is one colour and only you can change your own colour to the front of the line. As you progress the obstacles and colour changes get closer together and a lot more frantic which provides hefty challenge. You’ve also got two trophies to collect on each level and sometimes they can only be unlocked by fulfilling certain conditions, for example hitting a correct sequence of coloured keys. The option to edit your play style is a welcome one, you can slow down or speed up your character queue as well as edit the amount of checkpoints that appear and give yourself extra hearts to try and survive that little bit longer.
One thing worth taking note of is when you’re switching positions, as whoever switches to the front will obviously take the place of someone else so if you’re about to switch right before your team needs to jump this could throw your timings off. However, with it being very rare you’ll get through one level the first time without dying, you quickly become accustomed to how the game works in that sense.
Joggernauts is great fun to play with friends, the game will provide you with plenty of moments of frustration and laughs but when you’ve managed to hit the end of each level it does fill you with a sense of pride. Coordination is key here and whilst you can probably finish the whole thing within a couple of hours, it really depends on who you’re playing with! It would have been good to have a couple of extra worlds but collecting both the trophies in every level provides a good amount of replayability.
Joggernauts is a colourful adventure which will require a great deal of patience at times, but stick with it and you’ll find a fun and accessible experience which you can enjoy with a group of friends. An ideal party game!