The Fancy Pants Adventures Multiplayer Hands-On

We took a look at a new game mode from EA's latest downloadable offering, which plays like a crazed mash-up of Mario Bros, Little Big Planet, and Super Smash Bros.


If this is the first time you've heard of Fancy Pants Adventures, you could be excused for thinking it's a tie-in for an upcoming animated TV show or movie. However, if you have any interest in the Flash gaming scene, you'll know that it's actually a novel and addictive browser-based Flash game. Creator Brad Borne is working with EA to bring the game to the PlayStation Network and Xbox Live Arcade on April 19 and 20 respectively, at $9.99 and 800 Microsoft points. We got a chance to go hands-on with the game and speak to Borne at a recent EA showcase event.

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In TFPA, you and up to three other friends play as stick men, with, as the name suggests, each character sporting large trousers. You can customise your character using accessories unlocked by playing through the game, which also helps you to differentiate characters from each other. You see, Fancy Pants Adventures is a very fast-moving platformer, where the emphasis is on moving through the level to collect swirls before everyone else. That's not all--you can beat other characters to relieve them of their swirls, slide-kick them to get past, or jump on their heads to get to hard-to-reach places.

There are many modes in the game, all of which can be played by up to four players both locally and online. We got to play with three other people at the event and had a lot of fun trying to collect the most swirls while taking advantage of people in the process. Borne promises the game will satisfy players who want to have fun with friends and those who prefer to compete for high scores on the leaderboards. Borne has been in the process of pulling in levels from the Flash version of the game and working with a small Spanish team that has been getting them running on console.

There will also be more competitive game modes such as King of the Hill, which we played for the first time at the EA event. In King of the Hill, each character has to jump up walls to reach the top of the level, where they find a device that spews out swirls. Each player has to try to maintain dominance of the hill by knocking other players back down, allowing them to exclusively collect the swirls for points. In our game, players were charging their weapons (which included items such as forks and even a baguette) and unleashing them on their enemies. Others were bouncing off walls, getting a run up and then slide-kicking them into oblivion.

Running upside down--just one of the special abilities offered by wearing outlandish trousers.
Running upside down--just one of the special abilities offered by wearing outlandish trousers.

While The Fancy Pants Adventures is currently set for release only on consoles, the possibility of a PC version is being looked into as well. If you've enjoyed the likes of New Super Mario Bros. and Little Big Planet, then it's definitely worth keeping an eye on. Watch out for the game on the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 in a couple of weeks' time.

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