Welcome to Brandon’s Banter. I play games and give you my opinion without the fluff. I recently played the game My Friend Pedro, and wanted to share my thoughts with you guys. So, without any further ado, let’s get into it.



What is it?

My Friend Pedro, developed by DeadToast Entertainment, is an action packed side scroller made up of many levels with different challenges and obstacles. As you progress through each level, guided by a sentient banana, you have to take out multiple enemies in the most creative ways you can think of. Whether that be by ricocheting bullets off a frying pan, doing a few flips while shooting, taking out two guys at once by splitting your aim, or kicking a knife at a dude’s face, the choice is all yours. You’re also getting scored on each level. Scoring is based on all the stunts you pull off and how fast you complete the level. Each kill you get during a level adds to a timed multiplier, so you have to make sure you’re taking out enemies pretty fast to get the maximum amount of points.

I’ve played action side scrollers before, but My Friend Pedro is pretty unique compared to the others. It has high-action gameplay, smooth flowing levels, and visuals that are able to completely immerse you.



Visuals: Wait, this isn’t a fully 2D side scroller?

Let’s talk about those visuals, since it’s the first thing you’ll notice. With My Friend Pedro being a side scroller, you’d expect it to be fully 2D with not alot of dimension. Well, I did anyway, and I was completely wrong. The game uses a slightly angled camera, giving objects, such as boxes, barrels, and doorways, a little more depth, and sometimes uses stairs to add extra dimensionality to the scene as a whole. One level that stood out in particular used two sets of interweaving staircases, and it just looked really sick and really gave another dimension to the level. Throughout the game there were moments where I forgot I was even playing a side scroller because of how well the visuals were designed.

One small, but fun, detail that they added was a little animation that happened whenever you pulled off an insane kill. For a moment, your little banana friend will peak onto screen with a surprised or amazed face, making you feel even cooler than you already did.



Gameplay: Adrenaline and badassness

My favorite thing about My Friend Pedro would have to be the intense gameplay. You’re thrown right into the action during the first level. Shooting, kicking, flipping, ricocheting, dodging, rolling, swinging, and slowing down time; Your options are almost limitless. One of the more useful mechanics in the game is Focus, or slow motion. With the press of a button, you can slow down time and pull off some crazy stunts while doing so. In addition to that, you have so many different ways of taking enemies out. There is a variety of guns you can choose from, and can even use your feet as weapons too. From frying pans to skateboards, there are a ton of props in each level that you can take advantage of. I personally enjoyed the frying pan because you can hit it up into the air and ricochet bullets off of it.

Not only did they have a variety of weapons, but they had a variety of enemies as well. You fight the average bad guy with a handgun for the first few levels, but then they start spicing things up: swordsmen with full steel armor, heat seeking mines, turrets, and the occasional enemy breaking through the roof on a rope. These varieties of weapons and enemies perfectly fit into each level and add to the overall flow of the level.



Level Design: Perfectly balanced. As all levels should be.

When I first started playing, I wasn’t sure how they would prevent the levels from feeling monotonous. If you just kept going through levels with the same concept of, “I gotta kill these guys to progress,” it would get boring pretty fast. My Friend Pedro was able to avoid this completely. You don’t just run through each level shooting the bad guys. You have to run, jump, swing, wall jump, and roll all while making sure to kill everyone you see. That may sound like a lot, but it all flowed together very smoothly.

Some levels even have some puzzles mixed into the flow to switch it up a bit. You have to utilize levers, avoid electricity traps, and beat out timed switches in some levels later on in the game. At the end of each set of levels they would have a boss battle or some sort of special level. These levels were a super fun change of pace. In one of the levels you encounter you are freefalling off of a building and you have to navigate through the air and still shoot at the bad guys. They were able to create a variety of interesting levels all in a 2D space, which is awesome.



The one unfortunate flaw 

If I could change one thing about the game, it would be the bullet sponginess of the enemies later on in the game. Imagine this: You’re about to pull off the sickest slow motion triple front flip split double kill of your entire life, but then disaster strikes. One of the guys you were aiming at doesn’t die right away and your entire stunt was ruined. This unfortunate event happened to me quite a few times. The developers probably wanted the game to become progressively more difficult over time, but I felt like the insane stunts were a huge part of the game. Near the end of the game I found myself ignoring the unnecessary enemies because I didn’t want to deal with their insane amount of health and the amount of damage they could inflict on me. For this reason, I don’t think I enjoyed the final stages of the game as much as the earlier stages.


My final thoughts

In conclusion, My Friend Pedro is one of the most unique side scroller action games I’ve played. The visuals immerse you, the gameplay makes you feel like an unstoppable badass, and the levels keep you moving fluidly. The entire experience was exhilarating, except for the few times my tricks got ruined by some beefy bad guys. I’m giving My Friend Pedro a pretty solid 4 out of 5 hammers. I genuinely enjoyed my time playing and I highly recommend checking it out.