In a time of hygiene, meet El Ballo. This soon-to-be-hero jumps on the scene, naked and dirty. (Not dirty in the dirty way, but in the dirty way... Ahem.) On planet Testicular, where clothes are out of fashion and soap never was in, he is having a rough day. Entering the forest to find a gift for his girlfriend, the weather turns from a beautiful morning into a hailstorm of invasion. The evil Dr. Cough has other plans for today: a planet-wide hygiene operation.
A naked and playful lifestyle might like sound the ideal way to spend a weekend, but Dr. Cough disagrees. Throwing his army of cleanliness onto Testicular, his goal is to teach the Testiculites how to live in peace, prosperity and clothes. Well, in clothes at least. With his henchmen Mic the Mop, Mac the Vac, the Sponge Brothers and many others, Testicular might soon become washed up. Did you take a shower today? No? Then you'd better join El Ballo in his quest, or your home could become the doctor's next target.
What is missing from your life? Someone to hold and love? Steady pay? Respect from your friends? Bah, superficial stuff. What you really miss is the old-school 2D platform gaming of yesterday. Let's face it, returning to the old classics is always more fun than you expected. The Adventures of El Ballo packs hours and hours of fun in the same vein, wrapped in glorious OpenGL-rendered graphics and sporting the grooviest game soundtrack ever to grace your speakers. And when you're done, you've got the Speed Run mode to keep you up all night: replay any level with a timer, find new ways to cut a few seconds here and there until you can't go any faster. Retro as the gameplay might be, we know that only die-hard gamers want true retro. So, we took out the frustration and kept the fun, but there is an Old-School mode if you belong to the former group.
This green guy has many moves down his pants. El Ballo runs, jumps, shoots and climbs his way to Dr. Cough. A total of eight different weapons will help you on your way, as well as El Ballo's friends, including his girlfriend, the professor (who is... a little behind.) and a faithful blue dog. Duke it out over 29 levels, plus seven bosses and six wacky training levels; mop the floor with over 25 different types of enemies and search for items such as the QuickerUpper, Woof Deodorant and the Sha-Niagra. Make the Chlorine Copters crash into the enemy ranks, or hope that a UFO falls on the Lizards in the forest. In this story of bare necessities, anything goes.
Bring the noise, you say? Well, starting with some of the eight weapons: Use the Ice Gun to freeze enemies and climb them to higher ground. Use the linking Elec Gun to pacify large crowds of enemies, and then there's the Plasma Gun, and Wacky Water grenades... On the flip side, you will need every weapon, since there are bad guys coming for you: Chlorine Copters, Mafia Mops, Water Balloonies and more than twenty others. And the boss battles. Bring the battle out of the forest, through the Warehouse, up the Waterfall, through the Ice Caves and the Village, out of the Prison and all the way up to Dr. Cough's castle.
Immature is more like it. If the name of the planet didn't give it away, Testicular is a place where clothes are few and names are silly. It needs to be said: The Adventures of El Ballo contains doses of mild cartoon nudity. This can be turned off and protected with a password, so concerned parents need not worry. That said, the adult aspects of the game are completely non-sexual, and even more importantly, non-sexist. We intended to strike a blow to the sexism in computer games - a low blow, but a statement nonetheless. Innovative? Well, you never saw Mega Man in the nude, did you?
All of the animation in the game is well executed and serves as a testament to ProRattaFactor's talent, especially as a first-time developer. If nothing else, this title establishes the technical capabilities of ProRattaFactor, and I hope to see great things from them in the future.
Mac OS 9.2 or Mac OS X 10.6.8
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