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PHOGS! Review – For Phogs Sake

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The moment I saw a trailer for PHOGS! I could not wait to get my hands on it, here we are for the PHOGS! PS4 Review.

In PHOGS! you play as a duo of dogs on a captivating, puzzle-filled adventure. Linked by a stretchy belly, you’ll need to bark, bite and bounce your way through obstacles set across the themed worlds of Food, Sleep and Play, in co-op or single-player.

PHOGS! is brought to us by developers Bit Loom Games (their first game!) and publishers Coatsink (Transformers Battlegrounds, Cake Bash and Kingdom Two Crowns) and will be releasing on a variety of platforms. Steam (no price listing yet), Playstation 4 (no page listing yet), Xbox One (Playable on Series S/X) for £20.99 and the Nintendo Switch for £22.49.

PHOGS! PS4 Review – For Phogs Sake!

See what I think of PHOGS! below, will I enjoy the two-headed dog puzzle game? or will it leave me saying “for phogs sake!”? If you enjoy this article, check out my previous review here. Let’s start our PHOGS! PS4 Review.

Gameplay

As aforementioned, PHOGS! is about a duo of dogs or the two-headed hound from hell as I call it. The game can be played solo, couch co-op or online play with a friend.

If played solo, the controller acts as each head of the Phog, one stick to control blue, the other controls red. L1/L2 and R1/R2 also control the matching colours.

I can see this game causing a few family fall outs amongst children and those who are children at heart. Arguing who wants to go which way due to the limitation of your Phog only being able to stretch so far, just like stretch Armstrong, only the Phog doesn’t snap and leave a weird powder everywhere. However, they do sleep. A lot.

PHOGS! PS4 Review
Our little sleepy two heads.

I found the controls to feel quite natural. The control system on PHOGS! Reminded me a lot of Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons. I didn’t struggle to control the separate heads of the Phog whilst solving puzzles in the game, which is a godsend as there are many puzzles to solve.

PHOGS! PS4 Review
Move that watermelon!

This game isn’t too difficult and with a bit of patience and a clear head, you’ll solve the puzzles in no time. The levels have similar puzzles, drag the watermelon here, water the “jumpkins” to make them grow so you can bounce on them to reach higher platforms. However, the levels don’t feel the same when you’re playing through them.

PHOGS! PS4 Review
Water those jumpkins.

PHOGS! Also contains mini-games for example, the below which is an eating competition where you need to eat more fruit and veg than your opponents. The real question is, where does that food go once eaten? Think about it.

Also eating food results in your Phog getting fatter and only in the belly area which results in a slower, funnier looking Phog.

PHOGS! PS4 Review
Eat as fast as you can lil doggo

Graphics & Audio

As aforementioned I am playing this on the PlayStation 4 for our “PHOGS! PS4 Review – For Phogs Sake”, the graphics are adorable! a form of anti-aliasing does appear to be present, the game also seems to be running at decent frame rates, to my eyes it seems to be running at 1080p60 a lot of the time if not all the time. Hopefully, this doesn’t change with a patch which can sometimes reduce frame rates.

PHOGS! PS4 Review
Simple, yet beautifully put together.

It wasn’t all as adorable as first appeared. Firstly, I experienced an issue where my Phog seemed to lose the body but kept both heads. Secondly, this resulted in me not being able to do anything. Thirdly, A simple “respawn” from the start menu helped the body reappear. I only experienced it the once so it didn’t affect my gameplay too much, but hopefully, this was either a one-off or a bug to be fixed in a day one patch.

PHOGS! PS4 Review
The missing body bug.

PHOGS! has a pleasant soundtrack with matching sound effects. Pressing L1 or R1 results in our Phog barking which adds to the feeling you’re controlling a dog, rather than a two-headed creation from hell.

Longevity

PHOGS! would be a game I play every now and again. Not one I could sit and play from start to finish. That doesn’t make this game terrible though, that is just how I am with puzzle games in general.

If you have a keen eye for collectables in games, you can find golden bones in PHOGS!. These are used for buying items in a gallery area which seems to contain some more collectables you can unlock with a different number of golden bones.

There are many collectables to find (average 4 golden bones per level) and a fair amount of levels in the game to keep you occupied for a fair amount of time.

In addition to collectables, there’s also a beloved platinum trophy to be earned, which I know PlayStation fans are keen to unlock.

Final Thoughts

This game immediately had me fall in love with the Phog, an adorable little creature of which my journey was a good one. Puzzles get you thinking, but not too intense.

For their first game, Bit Loom Games have done a fantastic job. I definitely was not left saying “for Phogs sake!” and for that reason, I give PHOGS! a gold award.

Disclaimer: A code was received in order to write this review.

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PHOGS! PS4 Review

 

 

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