Estimated reading time: 5 minutes
Mighty Goose by Blastmode Games and MP2 Games is one of those titles that once you pick up you may not put down until it’s over. Designed as a run and gun almost Bullet Hell and shoot ’em up (shmup) at times, it’s not only fun, but it just got a new fairly long post game stage as free DLC.
Originally covered by Richard for the PS4 last June, I’ve been meaning to sit down to Mighty Goose for a while and I’m glad that I finally have. Retro in design, the experience made me think of an easier Contra, yes anything is technically easier than Contra, that won’t have you wanting to hit your head against a wall figuring out just how you’ll get past this one point.
Starting off with a prison break to free one of Goose’s fellow companions, this first stage helps you get your bearings in this 2D platforming world. You’ll be running, jumping and dodge rolling your way through hordes of enemies with your trusty pistol and companion(s). Power ups can also be acquired for more oomph in the form of machine guns, shotguns and rocket launchers before getting your hands on a few sweet rides each with their own flavor.
This is something that I appreciated as Mighty Goose never tried to overcomplicate things. Instead, it offers a few select weapons combined with some special abilities that can only be equipped one at a time to allow you to focus on the big picture. Not getting your Goose cooked. Literally as that’s the dying animation which had me laughing each time it happened because it served me right. Get it? Served? Cooked Goose? I’ll see myself out…
Back on topic, the special abilities start with the ability to honk at your enemies which does absolutely nothing short of adding entertainment value and some good old Xbox achievement points! From there though, you’ll eventually be able to slow time, bring down a Gears of War Hammer of Dawn satellite attack or simply summon a bunch of skeletons because why not? Each of these abilities has the potential to be super useful or absolutely useless depending on the situation but that is up for you to figure out as you move through the various stages.
Having only your current weapon and one of the above abilities really lets you focus on that bigger picture of jumping and dodging around an almost Bullet Hell like adventure as you’ll have a variety of projectiles flying your way ALL THE TIME. High, low, being lobbed up and over alongside actual enemies charging you, your focus is going to be anywhere other than on wondering which weapon is equipped and how much ammo it has. To compensate for the Bullet Hell, you’ll also have the ability to go all shmup on your enemies as you can fill up your Mighty Meter to become, Mighty Goose!
While in your super mode, you won’t take any damage and all of your weapons both cause more damage and have much wider spreads to their attacks. Fair is fair right? This does even the playing field as you are 1 versus MANY and oftentimes while not in super mode I would be getting hit and I couldn’t have told you where it came from. Left? Right? Above? At my feet? I didn’t know as there could be too much going on so the super mode which is easy enough to fill could help as I didn’t need to worry about taking a hit. I just needed to worry about clearing the screen of enemies.
Finally, the stage designs are basic enough but they are fun. They consist of some light platforming with combat sequences that must be cleared in order to move on to what will often be a fun boss fight. Newly added as of April 19 though is a brand new stage that mixes it up with some new mechanics such as underwater travel in a submarine and a surfboard sequence making me extremely nostalgic for both Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III: The Manhattan Project on the NES and Turtles in Time on the SNES.
The new stage is not only fun, but it’s also free and available after you’ve finished the original final boss. If you’ve been wanting to go back just for the fun of it? I would recommend it as this new stage is longer than the previous ones and changes the flow enough from the original set of stages to be worth coming back for. Haven’t jumped at the chance to have your goose cooked at all? Then it’s an easy recommendation alongside the core game as it’ll keep you busy for an afternoon or an evening as you run and gun your way through.
Mighty Goose is a fun and short experience that will keep you busy for a couple hours but not overstay its welcome. With several stages, boss fights, abilities and new content having recently been added for free which could easily have been at a premium price, it’s worth checking out on the PC, consoles and the Xbox GamePass.Score: 8 / 10