There’s a time and place for juvenile humour and fart noises. It just so happens to be within an inexpensive, throwaway, Switch download.
Pooplers takes inspiration from Splatoon, only swapping paint for multi-coloured poop. It’s a case of pooping for victory as the baby that covers the map in the most caca wins. We may as well call it paint from hereon because you were doubtlessly planning on eating today.
The troublesome tykes have customisable features including skin colours, a choice of hats and nappy colours, with that last one determining the colour of the paint. Each map has its different power-ups and a safe zone too – the baby’s doting mother runs around trying to stop their messy shenanigans, returning them to their respective cots. Trying to escape her clutches can be tricky.
Despite the crassness, this is a fun little competitive arcade game. It’s simple, easy to pick up, stuff. The maps have delightfully daft settings including deep space and underwater. The Halloween map is the standout in terms of design; the presence of a construction site further illustrates the developer’s warped sense of humour.
My five-year-old daughter found Pooplers a blast. It’s very easy to grasp thanks to the simple controls – one button to paint and another to use power-ups – and it’s structured so that multiple games can be played in a row with no downtime between. On a completely unrelated note, I’m grateful the developers include an option to turn the sound effects off.
I am however disappointed that the only single-player mode available is the basic competitive mode against bots. The local co-op option has far more enticing modes including Free for all, Team vs Team, Baby Football, Parent vs Pooplers, and (wait for it…) a Zombie Horde mode. In that last one, the babies must protect their candy by fighting off the undead using weapons made from modelling balloons. It’s hardly Gears of War.
As a single-player game, this is hard to recommend – you need some couch buddies to get the most out of it. Even then, though, it feels geared towards younger gamers. If you don’t mind your rugrats having a little innocent toilet humour in their lives, maybe bear this one in mind.