Puzzler Dr. Fetus’ Mean Meat Machine from Thunderful, Headup, and Team Meat is one work checking out on Nintendo Switch. Find out why in our Dr. Fetus’ Mean Meat Machine review!
Puzzler Dr. Fetus’ Mean Meat Machine from Thunderful, Headup, and Team Meat is one work checking out on Nintendo Switch. The game’s name – and overall gameplay mechanics – are a play on Dr. Robotnik’s Mean Bean Machine, a puzzle game that released back in 1993 on the SEGA Genesis – known as the SEGA Megadrive in other parts of the world – as an adaptation of Puyo Puyo for the Western market by adding characters from the Sonic the Hedgehog series. The versions used for the game are those from the Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog animated series from back in the day.
Dr. Fetus’ Mean Meat Machine is also canon, which means that the story takes place within the Meat Boy universe and follows after the events of Super Meat Boy Forever. It turns out that Dr. Fetus had been keeping an eye on Meat Boy through all of Super Meat Boy Forever. This allowed him to gather all of the information needed to create the perfect Meat Boy clone! Unfortunately, there’s one issue to solve: the DNA sample Dr. Fetus has collected isn’t a perfect specimen, which means that the clones are… well, far from perfect.
The good news is that Dr. Fetus is totally a genius, and he’s got a plan to fix things. He’s created a bunch of ruthless test chambers, and sends the clones in there to weed out the faulty clones so that only the best specimens survive. At first, the clones will not look like Meat Boy. But the more you play, the better the clones will get, until you finally start to see that face that you know and love.
Dr. Fetus’ Mean Meat Machine draws from Puyo Puyo – with a bit of a Dr. Mario feel to the whole thing – so to be able to progress through each stage, you’ll need to match at least four clones of the same color to make them disappear from the playing area. On top of that, Dr. Fetus introduces some deadly twists along the way to keep you on your toes. You’ll have to avoid sawblades, rockets, and more, which makes for a fast-paced puzzle experience like nothing else you’ve played before.
As for the controls, you’ll move each puzzle piece on the playing field with the left analog stick or the D-Pad by pressing left or right as needed. If you press down, the puzzle piece will speed up. If you press up, it will slow down. Using the L and R buttons you can make a puzzle piece dash left or right over two spots at a time. The A, B, X, and Y buttons will be used to rotate each piece so that you can work on matching up at least four clones of the same color. Each time you pop some Meat Boy clones, the genetic meter on the left side will start to fill up. Once you do that, you’ll move to the next phase of a level.
If you hit a hazard while trying to place a puzzle piece, you’ll lose and will be forced to restart that phase for the level. The good news is that if you manage to pull off a chain – that is, that more than one group of Meat Boy clones is destroyed by placing a single puzzle piece – then the next puzzle pieces will have a short invincibility window. The longer the combo chain, the longer the period of invincibility. While invincible, a piece will be able to pass through hazards without any issues.
For each world that you explore, there will be a boss fight to take on as one last stage before you move on to the next area. It’s during boss fights that you’ll be glad to have checkpoints activated. Why is that? Because thanks to checkpoints, if one of the Meat Boy clones hits an enemy or a hazard, you’ll be able to continue from the last phase you reached. If you deactivate checkpoints – which yes, is an option – you will need to do a perfect boss fight or else you’ll have to start over if you make a mistake.
Dr. Fetus’ Mean Meat Machine brings us a new entry in the beloved Meat Boy series while offering a puzzle twist. As you make Meat Boy clones disappear by matching at least four of the same color, you’ll work your way through a ton of levels in the Story Mode that increase the difficulty at a steady pace. It’s a puzzler that pays homage to Dr. Robotnik’s Mean Bean Machine while also managing to do its own thing. Dr. Fetus’ Mean Meat Machine is out today on Nintendo Switch with a $9.99 price tag.
This Puzzler Dr. Fetus’ Mean Meat Machine review is based on a Nintendo Switch copy provided by Thunderful.