App Reviewed on: iPad Air 2
User Interface Rating:
Replay Value Rating:
Daylight Studios has taken their cute, cartoony potato people and placed them in two very different genres. Their first game to grace mobile was Holy Potatoes! A Weapon Shop?! which was a fantastic and wacky weapon-crafting management game. This new release though is more of a space adventure. Holy Potatoes! We’re In Space? puts you in command of your own starship as you leap between galaxies and encounter all sorts of space-faring edible characters. It’s certainly charming, but it doesn’t quite create the same magic their previous game did.
At first glance, Holy Potatoes! We’re In Space? looks an awful lot like a cutesy version of FTL, and that isn’t an entirely unfair comparison. This a game about ship management, making moves carefully, and constantly trying to upgrade your ship while on the run from the Eclipse Armada.
As you dig into Holy Potatoes! We’re In Space? more and more though, it reveals itself to be quite a different experience from something like FTL. For starters, this game isn’t exactly run-based. It’s extremely narrative-heavy with full-on bouts of dialogue between the main characters (a duo of “spudding” pilots), and it moves along in a pretty linear fashion. What’s more is that Holy Potatoes! We’re In Space? is also quite a bit of a management sim. In addition to its turn-based space combat, there’s a ton of time where you’re crafting weapons, selling parts, recruiting new crew, and tweaking things just the way you want them before setting out on your next quest.
There is quite a bit to tackle with the management aspects of Holy Potatoes! We’re In Space?, but the main bulk of the game is its Exploration Mode, where you fly over the surface of planets and (mostly) fight with any ship that stands in your way. The fighting that ensues here isn’t necessarily bad, but it’s not the most engaging either. Your opponents seem to make pretty random strategic moves, and you can remove quite a bit of challenge from the game by crafting the right set of weapons that keep you pretty well protected in almost all situations.
To mix up this combat, Holy Potatoes! A We’re In Space? intersperses Explorations with little side-scenarios that let you make decisions or talk to other edibles instead of just blowing them up. Aside from the main story, this is where Daylight Studios floods the game with a ton of clever characters and charming writing. In these moments, you may come across mysterious time travelers or space cat pirates, and it’s up to you to decide how to resolve whatever dilemma they present you with.
No meat? No problem!
It’s really fun to upgrade your ship, push along the main story, and encounter new side-scenarios in Holy Potatoes! We’re In Space?, but the game favors combat over everything else, which can definitely slow down your enjoyment. There are moments where the combat can come together and be interesting, namely in the main quest's boss fights, but—for the most part—the fighting here can get pretty mindless.
This is mostly worth putting up with though, because the rest of the game is so fun to engage with. Daylight Studios is great at making its game worlds burst with color and character, and this alone makes pushing forward feel worth it. Sure, the combat can get repetitive, but pushing through it means you can see a witty exchange between your pilots after they accidentally run over a potato version of the Silver Surfer and have to decide what to do with him. The only real bummer with the narrative aspects of Holy Potatoes! We’re In Space? is some of its side content repeats itself a little too often, but this isn’t a huge problem.
The bottom line
Holy Potatoes! We’re In Space is a great little space game, provided you aren’t looking for a deep, systems-heavy experience. Although its repetitive combat is the main bulk of the game, there's a ton of interesting and compelling stuff surrounding it, whichsomehow makes the whole experience feel worth it.