Among the other PSN titles I got to check out this week was Fat Princess. Games such as this should be covered with disclaimers saying: "Warning! This Game Will Make You Grin Like An Idiot."
Fat Princess is a medieval-themed co-op game that pits two teams together in an all out war to rescue each others princess from the opposing side's castle. Interestingly enough, however, is that you can feed cake to your prisoner, causing the other team trouble and grief due to her increased weight. Does the 16 vs 16 player mutliplayer work? Or will it be chaotic as ever?
What you'll notice first is the great visual style this game has. The half-cell shaded, half-drawn look really pops on the screen. But don't go thinking this is for your kids, as the game is filled with all sorts of violence and blood. And I mean a lot of blood. Combine that with cute "Hiya" sounds the characters make when they attack adds up to a very charming little game.
The co-op is the big feature of Fat Princess. Rather than picking your character class before you spawn, you are given the option of choosing your class whenever and however many times you want simply by picking up one of the five available hats deployed inside your castle. Warrior, Wizard, Archer, Priest, and Worker. Out of those, I thought the Warrior was the most useful (and most fun). The Worker goes and gathers resources to upgrade character classes and defenses, but it's a lonely job.
This game requires a ton a strategy if you wish to succeed. Trying to organize 12 (possibly) random players into working together could be tricky. Previously, there was no voice chat support for Fat Princess, only commands to shout, but that has since changed after getting this response from Sony today.
"Yes, voice chat support is planned for Fat Princess."
So there you go.
The demo I played around with was still early. Hopefully the large amounts of screen-tearing I was seeing is fixed in the final game. Overall, Fat Princess coming along quite nicely. Priced accordingly, I think this could be a nice, cute alternative for Team Fortress 2 fans. With its customizable characters, extra game modes, and surprisingly deep strategy-driven gameplay, this could be a sleeper hit in 2009.
It will also make for great Kotaku podcasts!