Going from a game like the Shadow Warrior reboot, to Juju, the development team at Flying Wild Hog have definitely steered in the complete opposite direction of their last game. A cute platformer, Juju is a lighthearted romp staring the titular hero Juju, and his snake-y pal Peyo, as they struggle to save Juju's father from the evil Calypso. They'll run and jump their way through four different worlds and boss fights, and the hands on gave me a chance to see how the difficulty will ramp up as the game progresses.
The early stages serve to instruct you on how to play the game and introduces elements like the dash, stomp, and chant which can be used to collect pieces of amber. The dash and stomp can be used to defeat enemies, while the chant is used to interact with objects in the world that resonate with the mask that Juju carries. The game definitely feels like it has elements of platformers past, Super Mario Bros., Klonoa, and a few others give this game a little bit of a 'me too' feel, but the unique and cutesy characters help offset that, along with the challenge some of the later levels have. I got a chance to play one of the challenge stages that can be unlocked later in the game and it definitely took me more than a few attempts. We also got a chance to go against one of the bosses, a giant inflatable octopus that we had to defeat through five different stages of the fight.
Another curious feature to Juju from Flying Wild Hog, the composer of The Witcher, and The Witcher 2 will be providing the soundtrack. It'll be interesting to see how the final product turns out when it releases on the PS3 and PC later this year.