If you were tasked with a mission to save the world, but had to work with multiple versions of yourself, each an embodiment of one personality trait found within, would you be able to work together to accomplish the task, or would you fail miserably? This is the complex question running through my mind after spending time with the game So Many Me by Extend Studios. Besides raising a philosophical topic that left me analyzing my perspective of myself, So Many Me offers an overall joyful gaming experience that is rare to come by. This title is a puzzle platformer that successfully combines challenging puzzles and smooth platforming action, all wrapped in a lighthearted story with a powerful undertone.
The main character of the game is Filo, who is a green blob. I was trying to figure out a way to describe him in a manner that would sound heroic and stylistic, but green blob is the most accurate description of Filo. Your quest begins when Filo jumps into a fountain that harnesses his life essence which creates Arch seeds that, when located by Filo, will spawn another version of himself, bringing us to the name of the game, So Many Me. Each version of Filo has a unique personality trait and are named accordingly, like Sturdy Me and Brainy Me. Following the logic of the story thus far, each copy is vastly different from Filo, but since these characters are still Filo, it brings me to the conclusion that each Arch seed takes a characteristic present in Filo’s personality and forms a copy of Filo, housing only that trait.
While playing the game’s story missions, you will encounter multiple different copies of Filo, each becoming a part of the overall story present throughout. Each version of Filo brings entertaining elements to the story and I found myself smiling at some of the dialogue, igniting positive emotions that helped relieve the stress accumulated by the daily burdens of life. The reason I enjoy games is because they offer an escape from reality and a way to simply relax and treat my mind to joyous entertainment, which So Many Me executes flawlessly.
An added bonus to the story present in this game is the character devolvement that you witness as Filo works alongside each version of himself. This is what inspired the philosophical thoughts that I mentioned earlier. Filo was always annoyed when another version of him hatched, but he did the best he could to accept it, knowing that it was a necessary nuisance that had to be endured in order to reach his goal. As time passed, Filo grew an understanding and bond with each version of himself and due to that, the journey became easier to manage since there was less friction with the members of his group, AKA himself. I’m not sure if these philosophical elements were intentional, but this game had me thinking about how most people fight with the aspects of their personality that they dislike on a daily basis, instead of accepting them and finding a way to be at peace within yourself. This game was solidified as a rare gem in my eyes when it provoked such deep thoughts while wrapped in a whimsical package.
This entire game was a wonderful experience but I felt the need to focus most of my review on the story since it caught me off guard in the best way possible. That being said, I don’t want that to deter from the other aspects of the game since this truly is a complete package. Each level of So Many Me is packed with uniquely difficult puzzles, challenging platformer elements and three unlockables per map. This game has a lot of content that begs to be discovered, offering hours upon hours of entertainment.
The gameplay is based around utilizing each version of Filo, each with a skillset that’s needed to complete every challenge in the game. All the versions of Filo start with the same ability, allowing that ‘Me’ to change into stone, which can be used to climb on top of and can block incoming attacks. By obtaining different colored plants, a single ‘Me’ can gain a new ability which can only be used once per pickup. One example of these abilities is the red plant, which can turn one of the ‘Mes’ into a bouncy blob that can be used to reach higher platforms. This ability can also change the direction of incoming attacks, causing them to kill other enemies or can destroy blocks that couldn’t otherwise be broken.
As I’ve stated in my review of Dark Arcana: The Carnival, I’m not the best at puzzle games and it showed during my playthrough of this game. Instead of giving up whenever I got stuck, which happened more times than I would like to admit, I stuck it out and kept attempting to pass each obstacle in order to advance the story, and gained a feeling of elation after each level. Although I’ve not completed the game, this is a title that I will gladly revisit whenever I want to spend time stimulating my brain.
External elements- 4.5/5
I wouldn’t really consider this a bad thing, but it took a little bit of time to master the controls while using the basic keyboard configuration that the game was programmed with. The controls were very simple, but being able to utilize them properly took some practice. This may have been a personal issue, but I felt it was something worth mentioning since I’m not normally stumped with control schemes to the point of hindering my gameplay. I do want to stress that this was not a problem after a good 20 minutes of gameplay, so it didn’t reflect negatively on my overall impression.
The graphical style of So Many Me is a work of art. Each level is packed with many layers of background design that gives the game life and personality. Whether it was dancing mushrooms or detailed enemies, every aspect of the cartoon style art presented in this game is visual eye candy. This is one title that I will never attack for having a child-like feel to it because that is part of what makes this game so special.
During my play through I never ran across any noticeable glitches or bugs, which was a pleasant surprise. I’ve played many polished games, but this one was presented so well that I felt it important to mention how smooth the game ran. I also enjoyed the music, which was very mellow and relaxing. I feel that was the perfect soundtrack to use for a game that can often bring about frustration when a puzzle was too hard to solve. The calming ambiance set by the soundtrack and visuals in the game created a welcoming environment that kept me relaxed and allowed me to continue each level with a clear mind.
If you are looking for a lighthearted game filled with enjoyable characters and solid gameplay, I think I found the perfect game for you. I grew up playing Platformers like Crash Bandicoot, Mario and Castlevania, so I’m always looking for new titles in this genre for those times when I want to satisfy my inner child. I never expected So Many Me to be executed in such a wonderful manner and I will continue to play this title from time to time, which is something I don’t always do, given how many games I play. For this reasons, I give So Many Me a 5/5. I can safely classify this title as a ‘must buy’ for any fan of Platformers, so do yourself a favor by checking out this beautiful game here.