I have played it, people – the long-awaited return of Meat Boy in Team Meat’s Super Meat Boy Forever. A true sequel, SMBF is not just “more of the same”. It’s a massive game, with hundreds of randomly generated levels spread out across a smattering of longer chapters with unique bosses at the end of each. This time, Meat Boy is tougher, he’s mad as hell, and he’s going to get Dr. Fetus if it’s the last thing he does. But it’s not Bandage Girl that Meat Boy has to save, rather it’s the couple’s adorable baby girl Nugget!
Meat Boy can punch, slide-kick, dive bomb, and is an all-around badass in this adventure. He’s fed up with Dr. Fetus’ crap, and he’s not going to take it. But to make things a bit more difficult since Meat Boy can now defend himself so well, Team Meat has made it so that Meat Boy never stops running. The player uses two simple buttons to control the attacks and jumps of Meat Boy – bounding off walls changes directions, as you can’t manually steer Meat Boy in this game. It’s a lot like the excellent Rayman Jungle Run that graced iOS a couple years back, and I mean that in a good way. The platforming action takes a whole new level of urgency thanks to this decision to make Meat Boy a non-stop runner.
There’s a progress bar that shows how close you are to the end of a level now. Instead of several small one-screen levels bunched together, levels in SMBF are big sprawling mash-ups of unique parts, traps, jumps, and enemies – ensuring that no two playthroughs are ever exactly the same. If speed-runners had it rough with Super Meat Boy before, Forever is going to make things really interesting. Tommy Refenes was kind enough to tell me that the team’s cramming as much content as they can into this one, what started as a mobile “side project” but has since become a full-fledged sequel. So while it’ll be out before the end of 2018, it’s more like Q3 or Q4 than later this Spring. If what I played is any indication, it’ll be well worth the wait.