My Friend Pedro peels onto the Nintendo Switch bringing, blood, bullets, and bananas bundled together in one off the wall chaotic experience. Taking cues from action movies such as John Wick and The Matrix (basically anything with the breathtaking Keanu Reeves), the game throws you into an action-heavy bullet frenzy with a talking sentient banana partner whispering who to kill next in your ear. What more could you ask for?
The story revolves around our friend, Pedro the talking banana, as he tells you whom to kill next. There’s not much there for story oriented players, but thankfully the gameplay more than makes up for the near non-existent tale. Seeing Pedro pop up and smile on screen after every unique kill was drive enough for me to keep going.
My Friend Pedro wants you to feel like the star of a big budget action movie and it gives you the tools to do so. The first of these is the ability to split aim while dual wielding certain guns. Oftentimes you’ll be surrounded by enemies on both sides of you. Don’t go bananas! You can aim in two different directions to fight off the bad guys from any angle!
The game also gives the player the ability to slow down time. The duration of this special power is fairly liberal – meaning you’ll have plenty of time to perform some seriously stylish combos and kills. This mode doesn’t make you impervious to bullets or let you move at normal speed while everyone is frozen in place. You and the enemies will be slowed down but it gives you a few more seconds to react and cleverly plan out your next hit.
Using both of these skills in tandem is where the game truly shines. It took me awhile to completely get the hang of things (actually I probably still have a lot to learn), but once I got a good grasp on it my actions were much more fluid and I felt like I was finally playing the game how it was intended. That’s not to say that in the beginning I was stumbling around looking like I had slipped on a banana peel. My Friend Pedro makes every player, at nearly any skill level, be able to pull off a bunch of sweet moves that are worth showing off on social media to your friends.
The game isn’t terribly difficult but I did play on normal mode and there are two higher difficulties above that for the more hardcore gamers. Still, there were a few times when I was a little frustrated but it was far and few between. My Friend Pedro has some light 2D parkour platformer puzzles that won’t necessarily force anyone to lean forward at their screen wondering what to do next, but they were enjoyable nonetheless.
There were plenty of levels of different variety throughout the roughly five hour long campaign, although some of them felt awfully similar to the previous ones before. I think this was mostly because the level presentation features a lot of generic factories and sewer locations making each level look almost identical to the next even if it offered different challenges and obstacles.
Thankfully there were a few course designs that broke the mold and offered a unique spin on the gameplay, such as the motorcycle level. It was impossible for me to get through that level without a huge grin on my face. I also loved any time the game gave me a skateboard or other environmental objects like a frying pan that I could kick towards enemies and shoot at to effectively acquire ricochet kills. Yeah it’s silly and quirky, but it’s also loads of fun.
My Friend Pedro really gives you a lot of different ways to clear a room so that no two players will finish a level in quite the same manner. I have a feeling that this game will have plenty of players tinkering around levels discovering new and interesting ways to dispose of enemies.
There were a few times that the game bugged out on me, forcing me to restart a level or even reboot the game. It was an annoyance that I hope is resolved with a future update so that other players don’t experience it. Also the respawn locations were mostly fine, but a small number of times it would respawn me in a group of enemies with no possible way to react – forcing me to die over and over again before finally just restarting the level.
The graphics are clean with nice little touches of detail throughout. Although I wish there was more visual variety, the levels still look great. The game looks just fine in handheld mode, but I think it was much easier to pull off the intricate moves with my Pro Controller.
The game boasts a pumping EDM-like soundtrack ranging from hard house beats to bass heavy drumstep. As a lover of all electronic music this was my favorite part of the game. There was a great track for every level that perfectly set the mood and added to the whole action movie aesthetic.
My Friend Pedro is a game that 2D action aficionados should not miss out on. There’s a whole lot of potassium in this one. Although there were a few glitches and overused environments it more than makes up for it with raw thrills and over the top banana heavy action.
My Friend Pedro Review
- Graphics - 8/108/10
- Sound - 9/109/10
- Gameplay - 9/109/10
- Lasting Appeal - 8/108/10
Final Thoughts: GREAT
Picture this: backflip in slow motion onto a skateboard while shooting a frying pan to ricochet bullets to kill the bad guys all to appease your friend Pedro – a sentient banana. If that’s not enough for you then I don’t know what to tell you.
Tony has been gaming ever since he could walk. Pokémon Blue Version helped him learn how to read. His greatest accomplishment is not just having played the entire Kingdom Hearts series but also understanding it.