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Pipunka the Jumper review – “Too much challenge, too little fun”

  • You start off with just one health point, so be ready to die
  • It features adorable cartoony 3D graphics
  • The game becomes somewhat more enjoyable once you unlock stronger characters

The new arcade title Pipunka the Jumper thrusts you into the role of Pipunka, a round, bouncing creature attempting to save his little buddies from the evil wasps who have kidnapped them. Featuring adorable 3D graphics, this new arcade game tests your ability to dodge obstacles while collecting as many of your kidnapped friends as possible.

Pipunka the Jumper is Low on Health

From Bluebeard Studio, the arcade game features incredibly simple controls: tap the right side of the screen to jump and the left to shoot a leaf at enemies and obstacles. You can only carry two leaves at a time, and it’s rare that you’ll come across more ammo, so it’s a good idea to save them for when your back is against the wall.

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To start, you only have one health point, which means bumping into just one enemy or spike will cost you your life. This wouldn’t be so bad if the levels weren’t so challenging. It’s quite frustrating to restart the level over and over, especially when you consider the ads you’ll be forced to watch. Also, you can only make 10 consecutive jumps with the starting character, which makes traversing large gaps pretty tricky.

Pipunka in mage hat bouncing towards a plant enemy

When you earn enough coins, you can head over to the shop and unlock new characters, with each having 2- 5 health points. They also are capable of more consecutive jumps. For instance, the little fellow in the brown mage hat has four health and a maximum of 25 consecutive jumps.

Unlocking some of the hardier characters makes it easier to survive the game’s unforgiving levels. Still, by the time you’ve earned enough coins to purchase a character with 3 or 4 health points, you’ll likely be disenchanted by the game due to the constant death.

Buy a Better Protagonist

If you’re particularly skilled at similar arcade titles, you might be up to the challenge. However, for most of us, the too-challenging levels and low health will be a turnoff. You also can’t beat a level by memorizing its layout, as each time you die, everything is randomly generated. Pupinka in a wizard's hat bouncing near a large treasure chest.

Once you grind enough to unlock a character with more health points, everything becomes much more enjoyable. You’ll bounce along, avoiding a variety of obstacles like rocks, fire, and rotating traps. The randomly generated levels mean each gaming session offers a distinct experience.

If you can look past the ads and constant annihilation, you’ll appreciate the cutesy aesthetic. Like the player character, the enemy bugs are largely adorable. Even the rock obstacles you need to avoid will charm you as they stare at you with big, round eyes.

Pipunka the Jumper: A Deflating Experience 

Pipunka traversing an underwater level in a bubble

Graphically speaking, this bounce-fueled arcade game is a real gem. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for the gameplay. The exceedingly tricky levels combined with the fact that you start with only one health point make what could’ve been a charming title rather off-putting. Having to watch an ad every few times you die, which will be often, just adds to the disappointment. However, with a little love and a few patches, the game could be a fun experience.

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