Hell Pie launched on PC and consoles a couple of months back to a mixed reception from gamers, but I really enjoyed it. Sure, it had some issues, but the old-school platforming action was a lot of fun and there’s no doubting that it has its own distinct sense of gross charm. I was such a fan that I was willing to jump back in to play it again in the delayed Nintendo Switch version that has recently launched.
It’s… not great. Hell Pie already had technical issues to address on other platforms, but they feel more severe here. Not to unplayable levels, but I’d probably recommend playing the game on a different platform if it’s an option.
Check out some screenshots down below:
Hell Pie puts players into the role of the fiendish Nate, the ‘Demon of Bad Taste’, as he looks to gather the ingredients for a pie for Satan’s birthday. That concept alone sounds bonkers, right? Well, Nate is also joined by his angelic sidekick Nugget for the adventure, who just so happens to be chained to one of Nate’s horns and is used in all sorts of anarchic ways for Nate to get what he wants. It isn’t just holy advice Nugget offers, it seems, but is also handy when traversing the world and causing chaos.
There’s simply no denying that Hell Pie has one of the more unique narratives out there to drive the adventure on, with plenty of crude and gross antics to indulge in throughout the game’s runtime. It’s something I was a BIG fan of, especially since most platforming heroes are goodie two-shoes who don’t get their hands dirty. That’s not the case here, with the outrageous situations you find yourself in during your journey proof of that. This DEFINITELY isn’t a game for kids, so don’t fall for the somewhat cutesy look of things.
The core gameplay feels like your typical 3D-platforming adventure, with players navigating a myriad of creative levels made up of platforming challenges and baddies to beat up. Nate is well equipped for the job too, with him able to double-jump, ram objects, glide or grapple to objects using Nugget, and so forth. You can use Nugget as a weapon to beat up enemies too, though you’ll also find plenty of other cool gear throughout the journey that can be put to good use. It always feels like there’s something cool to take advantage of throughout the different levels of the game, and it helps give Hell’s Pie a rewarding sense of pace where you aren’t just doing the same set of tricks over and over again.
“To the developer’s credit, they have announced a patch has been released that fixes some issues (this wasn’t available when I played through the game) and that they’re going to make sure it’s fully fixed in the near future, but even they admitted it’s not in a perfect state yet.”
Everything throughout the gameplay is solid in design, whether it’s the varied enemies you fight, the inventive boss encounters, or just the satisfying platforming challenge, whilst the controls feel tight and make navigation easy. Admittedly, it will take a little bit of practice to figure out Nate’s jumping distance perfectly and the camera can fall awkwardly out of shot on rare occasions, but for the most part everything feels good.
It’s clear then that Hell Pie delivers an entertaining 3D platforming adventure that gets all of the basics right, all whilst offering a story that’s absolutely ridiculous (in the best way possible). Unfortunately, the Nintendo Switch version of the game doesn’t always deliver the gameplay in a technically sound manner, with plenty of issues cropping up that could make it feel really shoddy to play.
There are frame rate drops (some falling super low and making it hard to pull off basic platforming manoeuvres), random crashes, I got myself stuck in the environment on a few occasions where I had to re-load the game to get out, the visuals could look iffy when playing handheld… there were plenty of technical issues I hit when playing that really hurt my time with the game. Whilst Hell Pie had some technical faults on other platforms, they just felt more severe here.
Check out some screenshots down below:
It makes it difficult to recommend purchasing the game on the Nintendo Switch right now, especially since you’re clearly getting an inferior version. To the developer’s credit, they have announced a patch has been released that fixes some issues (this wasn’t available when I played through the game) and that they’re going to make sure it’s fully fixed in the near future, but even they admitted it’s not in an ideal state yet. Porting games can be tricky business and it feels like this Hell Pie needed a little bit longer baking in the oven before being released.
Hell Pie Review
There’s no doubting that Hell Pie is a really enjoyable 3D platformer that gets all of the basics right, but the Nintendo Switch version has too many technical issues right now to make it easy to recommend. The developers have admitted that there are flaws and are working to fix them, but as it stands, it can be a struggle to play. It’s a shame because there really is a good game here behind all of the issues (you can play Hell Pie on other platforms to see proof of that).
If you want to play Hell Pie but only own a Nintendo Switch, I’d recommend waiting for a patch before purchasing it. For everyone else? Just play it on a different platform, ESPECIALLY if you’re a fan of the 3D platforming genre.
Publisher: Headup Games
Platform(s): Nintendo Switch (Reviewed), PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC