Hoo boy, is there some baggage associated with this week’s pick. Super Meat Boy Forever from Team Meat has finally arrived on mobile after originally being announced as a mobile title way back in 2014. Or, in reality, this is what evolved from their Super Meat Boy: The Game game that was announced all the way back on April Fool’s Day in 2012. Either way this is a game that has been in the works for a VERY long time, and with the way that Team Meat has derided the App Store and mobile gaming over the past decade-plus, it was easy to feel like this was a game that would never actually see the light of day on mobile. That I am playing Super Meat Boy Forever on my iPhone right now feels like a small miracle for someone who has been following the entire saga since the very beginning.
So with all that I approached Super Meat Boy Forever from kind of a weird place. I had briefly played the game on Switch at PAX back in 2017, but other than that I never checked out the console and PC versions when they launched a couple of years ago. I hadn’t read any reviews or followed the game in any way. I was more or less coming into this one cold, other than the fact that I knew it was an auto-runner and it had been in various stages of development for more than a decade. It turns out that my ignorance was bliss, because Super Meat Boy Forever is shockingly good and it caught me very pleasantly by surprise.
Being that the original Super Meat Boy helped usher in the “masocore" platforming genre, it should not be a surprise that Super Meat Boy Forever is hard hard hard. You will die so so much, but you will respawn nearly instantly and just prior to the spot you perished, so it never feels too frustrating to have to replay a level over and over. Just kidding, it feels SUPER frustrating, but not because of the interface or the flow of the game, but because of the stupid hard level designs.
Those level designs are actually an interesting and polarizing part of Super Meat Boy Forever. The levels in the game are algorithmically generated using more than 7,000 smaller level chunks. Fans of the original game loved its finely-honed level designs that could be played over and over and perfected, and you certainly lose some of that here. Not necessarily in a bad way however, just different. The Super Meat Boy Forever level-chunk levels feel almost like puzzles that need to be solved with insane timing and reactions. It’s fun and certainly challenging but if you’re looking for more of what the first game offered then these might not do it for you.
Gosh, I could kind of go on and on about this one, there is SO much more to talk about, but I should probably leave something to be reviewed. Also this game is somehow just a dollar so honestly just buy it and try it out for yourself. Chances are pretty good you’ll be into it if you’re into super-difficult auto-runners. This is a genre that’s been so overdone on mobile there was a time when the thought of another auto-runner could make me physically ill, but instead Super Meat Boy Forever has arrived at a time when I’m ready for something like this again and I’ve been nothing but surprised and delighted by it so far.
Perhaps it’s fitting this game was announced over a decade ago because it almost feels like a game from that era, and in that sense I’m happy it took so long so I could be enjoying it now rather than having it be lost in the shuffle of similar games back during the genre’s heyday. In other words, it was actually well worth the wait.