Maddening Euphoria | Nintendo Switch Review

Is that John Wick, a.k.a. Keanu “You’re breathtaking” Reeves silhouette on the cover of Maddening Euphoria? At only 99p, it’s not going to hurt to read about it and check out the video. You know what? I’m hardly going to go without food if I snap up this little bad boy now, so let’s go for it. But what the hell is Maddening Euphoria?

Your guesses are as good as mine, but this is 100% a mobile game that I would play on, well, my mobile. To top that off, the price is so low, you’d be a fool not for buying it. What else could you get on the Nintendo eShop for that price that you don’t already have? I checked out The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening plus Pokémon Sword, and I’m telling you, the pre-orders are a bit more expensive than 99p, but not that much.

In all fairness, Maddening Euphoria is a puzzle/reflex/reaction game. You can call it whatever you wish, but note that I didn’t say just a puzzle. Ok, it is a puzzle game, and with all the challenges and variations, it doesn’t turn into Optimus Prime, but it’s a hell of a lot of fun, and I’m going to mention it again, it’s absolutely worth the money.

Just Give Me Another 30 Seconds, and I’m Done

An earlier pink based level
Pink, it was love at first sight

The above is the phrase I have said this past weekend while playing Maddening Euphoria. I bought it a few days ago for a series of reasons that I will explain here. My daughter had pocket money and wanted me to add V-Bucks to her Fortnite game. Enter the exact amount or round it up? I’ll round it up and use the change for something else. I did, and with all that money, I bought Maddening Euphoria, Skyhill and Stranger Things 3.

Looking at the trailer, you’d expect to see everything the game has to offer in the first 5 minutes, and you’d be right. Somewhat. You take control of a little silhouetto of a man, Scaramouche, Scaramouche read my review of Grim Fandango Remastered. I’m proud of that one. With this man or woman (you play siblings Mason and Millicent Zane) you run on a hamster wheel that changes in size and shape introducing all manners of obstacles while a massive ‘fast wall’ follows you from behind. Like a clock.

Your goal is really to stay alive as long as you can by timing your speed (you move to the right but can slow down going left) and jumping over the obstacles. These are mostly in the style of platforms and clearing gaps without falling to your death, jumping over spikes and trolling through goo.

Simple? Yes, but No. It’s Much More

It all seems very simple, and it is. The main graphics are stripped down, but you don’t need anything complicated as you’re more concerned with keeping the momentum up. Yes, the graphics are simple but incredibly stylish. It reminds me of a Saul Bass sequence. That’s one for the demographics. There are themes throughout that randomly change – these themes change the colour of the stage and the music.

Challenge completed stats screen
An awesome stat screen

Some of the tunes are really upbeat, some are funky, and a few others are a little low key so you can recover your breath and unclench. At any time in the menu, you can also set your favourite themes – there’s a lot of them – 36 to be precise, and each of them is tuned to your preferred locale – British, American, Japanese or any of the other four world languages. The game was made by a British team, so of course, it’s ultra witty. Non-biased.

By the way, there are no lives or health in this game. When you’re dead, you’re dead. There are a few things you can do, though, like collect a second wind. This has nothing to do with bowels but gives you a speed boost. It also helps you fast track receiving the bonus: spell out ‘Euphoria’ and times speeds up, your life expectancy increases, and there are no more spikes. I only know this as the developers, Chequered Ink said it. That was one of the challenges I struggled with the most.

Give Me Some Challenges. 150+ Of Them

Jumping (get it?) to the games modes, we begin with the Standard mode or survival. Just stay alive for as long as possible. Other game modes include Double Speed, Fast Wall, No Backsies and Pogo. They’re all self-explanatory (if not, just buy the game. I don’t know the developers or get paid for this, but it’s worth it) but Pogo was the hardest for me. Your character continually bounces so this means timing needs to be precise as you find that pressing jump while already in the air doesn’t work.

The best section from my experience is Challenges. The Challenge section is the bit that has me hooked as they are super quick challenges that shouldn’t take 20 or 30 seconds at times, but that might as well be minutes as some are easy, some are brutal. At the time of writing (16:25), I haven’t got through a third of them yet, but I’ve completed most apart from spelling out Euphoria. That always gets me.

The 150+ challenges listed in the game
Note I’m showing you earlier challenges as they’re easier

Some of the challenges have you jump on a trampoline a couple of times, or stay alive for 20 seconds. You don’t unlock the challenges in order and can jump to whichever you want to do. So, I peeked to the last chapter of the book to see how it all pans out and for the 156th challenge, and for the title of Grand Madmaster, you must survive at least an hour. Wow.

Feels As Good As a Euphoric Poo

Euphoric poo; 

It had been three days since Hector’s last movement, but he just made a long-distance call on the porcelain god and had a euphoric poo that’s made him feel he can accomplish anything. Like he’s transcended.

Me

My motivation for buying this game was for multiple reasons. 1) I have money on my account – must spend it 2) I want to purchase a new game to fill a post 3) isn’t that John Wick? In my mind’s eye, I thought that I would play this game for a bit, take a few screenshots then write about how this was ok, but I wouldn’t play again, or a good game and worth a look.

Instead, I’ve picked up a game that I haven’t really been able to put down other than the wife reiterating that I married her, not the screen. As I took that on board, I promptly switched off the game and opened the laptop to write this review. Oh, wait…

A purple level
Purple Rain? No. Purple plain

Is Maddening Euphoria any good? Yes, it ruddy is. As I said, it’s a ridiculous price on the eShop, and if you’ve really bought into my review and followed my advice only to find that I was utterly wrong, and we’ll never hang out again, it’s only me who misses out. If you hate it, you won’t have spent loads of time on it, and if you really hate it, it only cost 99p. I don’t think that’s the case though and highly recommend this one.

Disclaimer: As most people write disclaimers on their reviews, I’ll write one here. I paid for this game with my own money. All 99 pence. Nobody sent me a review copy, I didn’t ask for one, and I don’t know anyone from Chequered Ink Ltd. I won’t change my review as this is my opinion, but if I’ve made Chequered Ink Ltd gush with my positive words, and want to send me their next game in the future, I’m all for it. Alternatively, I can be bought with a packet of crisps. That’s potato chips, cuzz.