Review by DarkAkatosh
The cake is a lie!
Fat Princess is a cartoony hack-and-slash team based beat 'em up game known for its gore and zany, meme-driven gameplay. The concept of it is akin to a standard capture the flag match in a typical war game. However, there is much, much more to do aside from rescuing the princess from the clutches of the other guys. Let's take a closer look.
Gameplay wise, it's pretty straightforward. The game is played as a birds-eye view beat 'em up. You spawn as a villager and choose a class, which are the worker, warrior, mage, priest, and ranger. Each class has their own role in each specific game mode. The four game modes are Rescue the Princess, Snatch 'n Grab, Invasion, and Team Deathmatch. In Rescue the Princess, your goal is to rescue your princess from the enemy's dungeon and defend her for 30 seconds to win the game. In Snatch 'n Grab, it's typical capture the flag. Capture the princess 3 times to win. For these game modes, you can make the princess fatter and harder to escort by feeding her the cake strewn across the map. She'll get slimmer over time, so you better keep her fat. In Invasion, it's all about decreasing the other team's score by holding the majority of the outposts, and the first to get it to 0 wins. In Team Deathmatch, You decrease the opponent's score by killing people, first to get it to 0 wins. And for kicks, there's a soccer game too. Basically, you nudge the ball towards the other guy's goal, killing anything in sight in the process. You'll be playing these modes across 8 maps (except for soccer which has its own map). Not every map is a winner. Some maps are prone to stalemates and it's a guarantee you'll be playing the entirety of a 45 minute time limit should they come up. At the end of the round, you can vote for the next map, so you better choose wisely.
As far as the classes go, each class receives an upgrade when proper resources are acquired. The worker is responsible for gathering resources, which are wood and metal. He can deposit them into an outpost or your base if you're really desperate. The worker can throw bombs when upgraded which can be used to breach enemy doors and for kills. The priest is responsible for healing your teammates, but he can sap the life of opponents to increase his life when he's upgraded. The mage can set people on fire, decreasing their life for a few seconds. He can freeze when upgraded, which can get pretty annoying. The ranger and warrior are the main combat classes and the workhorses of the battlefield, as they'll be the ones responsible for cleaning out the enemy en route to their base. A very solid variety of classes are to be had here makes the combat portion very fun.
That's primarily what you'll be experiencing for multiplayer. The single player modes include the campaign mode titled Legend of the Fat Princess. You can also play a simulated game against bots (as per the game modes mentioned above). There's also a Gladiate mode, which pits the class of your choice against 12 waves of enemies with no way to regain health when lost. ****ing hard. There's a good amount of single player content here, but the real value lies in the multiplayer. Excellent amount of content here for the price.
Despite all that can be said about the amount of fun the game has, there's quite a bit of shortcomings on the multiplayer side of things. Games are often laggy, and they're run on a peer to peer basis so the host has an advantage here. When you search for a game, you only get to choose the game mode and map. That's it. You're just randomly dumped into a game. This is a good thing and a bad thing. The good being that it'll be easier to get players into your games. The bad being that you have absolutely no idea where the host is from, so you don't know how laggy it's going to be before you start playing. Often times, you'll get a "no games found" error when there are clearly games running, so you'll have to search again. What hurts the game even more is that there's no sense of team balance whatsoever. Since bots are not very good, sometimes you'll get a matchup where it's you against 25 other human players, and there's no sense of balance here either since you're free to switch teams at any time at the end of a round if there happens to be a spot open. This creates lots of unbalanced matches and there will be lots of times where you'll get spawn killed and baseraped quite often. It's really a shame on Titan Studios' part to ignore the balance implications.
Yes, the game is very fun and there's tons of content here for $15, but it's marred by laggy online play and shortcomings on the developers' part, namely balance issues. That being said, I can't really recommend this game to anyone unless you're a fan of beat 'em ups (like me), FPS games or capture the flag style games. Lots of hype went into the promotion of this game, and the final product ends up being somewhat of a disappointment.
Rating: 2.5 - Playable
Product Release: Fat Princess (US, 07/30/09)
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