Published on April 26th, 2020 | by Zorbz
REVIEW: Moving Out
REVIEWED BY: SNRUB
Moving Out is fast-paced comedy mayhem, a love letter to 1980’s film pop culture, a satire of everyday working life, and a perfect fit to be picked up by Team17 (who also published Overcooked!). But how does this game stack up?
Concept: The goal in Moving Out is to do whatever it takes to empty each house. You play with 1-4 characters who can drop-in/drop-out between levels and fill the truck with ALL OF THE THINGS before the clock runs out. As ‘The Boss’ (a robot made of cardboard boxes) points out, it is fine if you break stuff… that’s why we have insurance!
After completing each 3-10 minute level, 3 hidden challenges are revealed as well as a Gold, Silver or Bronze rating depending on how fast you were which allows for a good reason to replay the levels if that’s your kind of thing. As each level is completed, a new house becomes available for moving out with new challenges – whether it be fragile items that reset if you break them, hazards such as water, ghosts and rakes or having to move things that don’t want to be moved or stay in the truck at all.
Your character (a toaster, lizard, cat, or human to start) can be switched in and out or customised anytime between levels and more customised looks become available as word gets around about your amazing moving skills (an egg, a unicorn, and others I won’t spoil join your team).
Graphics: This game is simple, cartoony, bright, and colourful with clean edges. Just 3D enough to get a feeling of the space while maintaining a 2D look without any cel-shading edges. Even when my Nintendo Switch was docked on the TV I found the stylised look preventing me finding any imperfections.
Images get crisper in hand-held mode but this is a game that’s fun to both watch and play, so you’re better off putting it on the TV for your friends or family to enjoy with you. The important thing is that each item is distinct which helps the gameplay.
On top of that the animations are superb – watching your characters strain as they lift each end of a bed, or breaking a sweat as they push past a jam. The accessories in your head springing out in fun ways as my toaster character’s waffles kept launching out of his head, and broken glass, oil mark tracks all seem to stay where you leave them for each house which is very satisfying.
Gameplay: Similar to games like Job Simulator, Surgeon Simulator, or Overcooked! the real fun comes from the physics and increasingly crazy situations presented. But unlike those games, Moving Out never felt frustrating and always felt fair. The only really hard bits are the bonus arcade levels. Single Player: This mode means you will be able to move any item by yourself, although long couches can be tricky to line up to get through the doors the game automatically adjusts the difficulty to make this a genuine way to enjoy the game from start to finish. This comes in super handy if other people don’t want to play.
Dual Mover Mode: “For those players that want to move at twice the speed but half the efficiency” this works as a gimmick or an extra challenge but is probably not the recommended way to play as I needed to unlock it from the settings menu, and it returns large items to full weight meaning you’ll need to line up on each side while remembering which controller moves which character. Local Multiplayer: I only got to try this with 2 players rather than the maximum of 4 but it was my favourite way to play, and didn’t cause any frustrations. Any friends or couples that finish Overcooked! and still talk to each other after the experience the real heroes as someone usually takes the role of head chef turning the game into less of a cooking simulator and more of a Casual Abuse Simulator. Moving Out on the other hand is very collaborative and keeps everyone in sync and I loved every minute of it.
Online Multiplayer: None.
Sound: There are references to Ghostbusters, Back to the Future, Frogger, and old school arcade machines and it shows through the soundtrack. There’s no spoken dialogue and it’s not really needed, what we have instead is a very polished experience.
The only thing I didn’t like is that the characters fart occasionally when lifting heavy items, but if you’re playing with young kids they might like that, and it wasn’t frequent enough to ruin the experience in any way.
Awesomeness: One thing worth noting is that all of the movers LOVE moving and they LOVE ‘The Boss’. It’s quirky, it’s weird, and their jokes between levels are genuinely funny the first time you see them so I always kept my thumb away from that pesky skip button. Each joke had a proper setup and punchline which means no single screenshot could really capture the magic.
Final Word: The enthusiasm within Moving Out is infectious, and the soundtrack so upbeat that it all comes together into something really special. Maybe next time your friends are over you ask them to help you move some couches. And chickens.
Out of 5 Bugs!