In July of last year, we were introduced to Mikey Shorts ($1.99), a speedrun-centric platforming game and the first title from two-person studio BeaverTap Games. The following month Mikey Shorts was unleashed on the world, and received critical praise from both media and players alike, including our own 5 star review. Much of that was due to its broad appeal – a casual player just looking for some fun platforming could get that with Mikey Shorts, while the more competitive folks could focus on speedrunning and battling with other players on the leaderboards.
One of the interesting sidebars to Mikey Shorts was the inception of BeaverTap Games The studio is made up of Mike Gaughen and Mike Meade, two gamers who initially met right here on our forums while obsessing over the 2009 Rocketcat Games hit Hook Champ ($2.99). The two Mikes, along with a handful of other elite players, traded spots in the Hook Champ leaderboards for months, creating a heated but respectful rivalry. This continued on into the following year with the sequel Super Quickhook ($2.99), and even spilled into a few other games like Physmo’s excellent speedrunning platformer Mos Speedrun ($0.99).
Through their rivalry a friendship was born, and further uncovered the fact that one Mike had a bit of programming experience while the other Mike had some art skills. Both Mikes shared a dream of making their own hooking, speedrunning game, and with their newly combined skills they sought out to do just that.
While Mikey Shorts nailed the feel and tempo of running and jumping that makes a speedrunning platformer so successful, it was missing one crucial element: hooking. Enter Mikey Hooks, the official follow-up title to Mikey Shorts and as you might have guessed a game with hooking in it. Check out the very first look at Mikey Hooks below.
As you can see, BeaverTap has tried to keep all the things that made Mikey Shorts a hit intact while not rocking the boat to much with the addition of the hooking. The same great controls will return, but now the jump button will perform double duty. When in the air near a special hooking point just hold down the jump button to attach and swing. It sounds like a scheme that will work well.
Mikey Hooks also ramps up the number of enemies and hazards that poor Mikey must deal with, and the same goals of collecting every coin and searching out the hidden Golden Shorts will return from the first game. There will also be custom hooks you can buy along with a whole slew of new disguises to trick out your Mikey character with and make him your own. I am not ashamed to admit that playing dress-up with Mikey was unexpectedly one of my favorite parts about the first game.
After more than 3 years, and after laying solid groundwork with Mikey Shorts, Mike and Mike are finally realizing their hooking game dream. I can’t wait to try it for myself, and BeaverTap has started a discussion thread in our forums if you want to chime in with your own excitement. Mikey Hooks is set to come this spring, and we’ll have more on it in the near future.