Do you like capitalism? Do you like platforming games? And most importantly, do you like lemonade? If you answered yes to these questions then the makers of Super Lemonade Factory are hoping you’ll like their newest game, which is a successful, bizarre, charming little retro package.
You play as Andre and his wife Liselot, in a post World War II world. Andre’s father has offered to give Andre his lemonade factory, but on the condition that he and Liselot traverse through the shockingly dangerous rooms of the warehouse, factory, and finally the boardroom. These environments are full of moving platforms, spiked walls and ceilings, and precariously deep chasms.
Never cross a chef.
Along the way you’ll encounter a huge cast of characters, including factory employees, chefs, food inspectors, and a general who wants you to supply his army. It’s your job to talk to everyone in order to get a better idea of how the business works, the employees’ needs, and how politics play into making the whole thing run. There are also collectible bags of sugar and bottles of lemonade littered throughout the rooms. If you manage to beat all 72 levels and get all of the bottles, you’ll unlock a hardcore mode and 12 more levels per world.
Teamwork between Andre and Liselot is key here, and you’ll have to switch between the characters and use their unique abilities to reach the end of the levels. Andre can smash giant boxes that bar the way, and Liselot can do a double-jump, which you’ll need to reach some key areas. For some reason Liselot is the only one who can talk to the other characters. You can also ‘piggyback’ the two, with Liselot riding on Andre’s shoulders if you want to move them both together. Trying to decide when to use which character for certain situations, or in what order to use them is a large part of the fun of playing the game.
To the sugar bags!
Switching between the two is done by swiping left or right on the screen. Movement and actions are done with a typical left/right arrows for movement and ‘A’ and ‘B’ buttons for the various actions. Unfortunately, this control scheme presents some unique problems. First and foremost, on more than one occasion we found ourself accidentally switching between characters when we were trying to move and vice-versa. This can get truly dangerous when you’re trying to do things like jump precisely around spikes or navigate around dangerous obstacles. Also, the controls are a little slippery. We would find ourselves running further than we wanted to, or not quite making a successful jump when we were certain we had nailed it. We’d also like the ability to change the control layout, as the spacing of the buttons was a little problematic.
The graphics and music are what we’ve come to expect from modern retro-style game on iOS. They’re nothing special, but they are cute and charming and generally well done. The ‘Factory’ levels are particularly nice to look at, and the original chip-tune soundtrack is appropriately bouncy and fun.
Super Lemonade Factory is a strange game. It’s definitely not your typical run and jump game, but it also holds the basic tenets of those titles very close to its heart. Even though the controls can be troublesome and the subject matter isn’t too exciting, this is an unique and clever little game that oozes charm on every screen. Platforming fans would do well to give this one a try.