Bugsnax is the first game I’m playing as a native Playstation 5 title, and I’ll be honest in that when I first saw the trailer/gameplay for this, it didn’t look wholly like my sort of thing, but as a first taster for the new generation, and since I learned that it’s apparently quite good, I thought I’d give it a whirl.
Before too long, I was equipped with a Snax Trap and caught a Strabby – sounding like ‘Strawby’, since it’s a strawberry-shaped walking Bugsnak), and as I picked it up once I’d trapped it, I heard it say “Strabby” from within the PS5 controller. That’s pretty cool, although it’s a shame that as it’s not coming out of the PS5, the audio won’t be captured with my gameplay.
As well as following Filbo – who’ll give you some initial guidance, you’ll get side quests from other characters along the way, including a journal from Beffica, which helps keep a track of everything as it details all your quests completed so far. In fact, there’s a lot of chat in this game, but at least you can skip lines of dialogue one at a time when it all gets a bit too much.
After viewing the bugs with your Snaxscope (camera), the Snax Trap you’ll use to catch them is rather like the Ghostbusters ghost-trap, in essence. Other implements including your Sauce slinger (catapult), allowing you to cover bugs (and the ground between them) everything in ketchup or chocolate so bugs will notice each other, or scare others into walking into your trap, or with one catching another, allowing you to snare otherwise elusive bugs, such as the pineapple-shaped Pineantula, while all along, the aim is to find Lizbert because she’s gone missing.
In Bugsnax, once you’ve done the initial few quests in the first hour or so, you can select from a number of quests which don’t have to be completed in any particular order; and once you’ve found one bugsnak for any particular character, they’ll want more of different types, and so it goes on.
Looking online, a lot of people seem to love this game, but I’m just not getting it. There’s only so many ways to trap the bugs and, yes, you have to tweak the methods in certain ways to trap certain bugs, but in the end, once you’ve trapped a few types of bugs, you’ve trapped them all. Or, at least, it feels like it.
Naturally, Bugsnax is aimed at kids, so if you have a PS5 and a youngster, they’re going to love it. For the adults, they’ll be looking for something more meaty to give them a reason why they bought the console.
In addition, the graphics are rather hit and miss. They flow well, but when you get close up to, say, the rings on a felled tree, it’s like one of those ’90s 3D games where no-one bothered to pay attention to the wall panelling, so it just looks odd.
On the plus side, it’s only £17.99, so a far cry from the £60-70 for most new PS5 titles.
- Developer: Young Horses
- Publisher: Young Horses
- Players: Single player campaign
Reviewer of movies, videogames and music since 1994. Aortic valve operation survivor from the same year. Running DVDfever.co.uk since 2000. Nobel Peace Prize winner 2021.