Pretty short review this time, today’s review is very similar to a game I did a while back called Cyber Hook. Both are synthwave neon inspired landscapes with first person parkour and speedrunning levels. Unfortunately, I think Cyber Hook is a much more well polished game comparably. Nonetheless, Pizza Synthwave still has some positives. Its music is very solid, there can be a good sense of speed and flow when the controls are cooperating with you, and mechanics are paced very nicely. Unfortunately, I found the controls extremely frustrating, to the point that I was barely able to stick around for the latter half of the game.
A particular offense, climbing, has to be the least intuitive or satisfying mechanic I’ve seen in a game like this. I don’t feel like I’m climbing so much as spamming a button until I happen to make it across to the other side. The worst part is the camera, which is completely unhelpful in letting you figure out how far you’re going. There are other slight annoyances with the physics engine, as sometimes it’s very difficult to straighten out your maneuverability if you ever move at an angle, and the wall jump can be very finicky, often finding yourself slipping down even though it looks like you have a good grip. There is a grapple hook function, but I didn’t really play with it enough to comment fully: it seemed somewhat serviceable yet held back by the previous grievances.
If you can get past all of this, level design does seem genuinely pretty solid, with a good sense of direction and scale as you approach vertical and horizontal traversal. There really aren’t too many game modes or anything, it’s just sorta a matter of picking one of the 30 available levels. That’s pretty much all there is to cover.
I think Pizza Synthwave is a game that’s a few quality of life patches away from being a pretty awesome title. The premise is pretty wacky, but simple to understand, and I can see people really enjoying the chill vibe. For me, on keyboard and mouse, the controls were a bit too frustrating for me to want to play beyond the review, but I could see this being a game that turns around. I don’t think I’d recommend picking it up as of now despite the relatively low price, but I did hear that there was a dedicated group tasked at winning every level without dying, so maybe you can find your people.
Pizza Synthwave was developed by Theseus Games.
Available on Steam for $3.99
A review copy was provided by the devs.
Hellfirebam has not awarded Pizza Synthwave the Indie Gamer Seal of Approval