Space Otter Charlie (PS4, Switch, Xbox One, PC)

In the future, humans have left Earth and now all the animals must fend for themselves.  When the weather gets too warm for otters, they build rockets to leave Earth to find other hospitable planets as well.  Join Charlie and his crew of otters as they explore abandoned space stations and other craft as they scrounge for parts and upgrades and maybe even find a new home for them and all their animal friends.  Play as Charlie in this unique 2-D platform action game where you ‘swim’ through anti-gravity space, sticking to walls and using thrusters to get around.  It’s actually a fairly unique concept and the game is pretty good and turned out a lot better than I thought.  Space Otter Charlie is available to download on most current consoles and PC, but reviewed on PS4 here.

Charlie’s otter spacesuit has magnetic boots and allows him to stick to floors, walls, and ceilings.  But you can’t walk around.  To move, point in the direction you want to go and press a button and Charlie will jump off and fly in that direction.  While floating, you can press the button to activate thrusters to control his direction a little bit.  But you only have a limited amount of thruster energy and must find another wall to stick to before using them again.  When you land on another surface, you can hold the shoulder button to slide for a bit, giving you some extra movement options.  You can also press a button to fire a laser gun in any direction.  Shoot at debris to clear them out of the way, or at enemy robots who may try to hurt you.  You can find and switch to new weapons as you play, like one where the lasers bounce off the walls.  Destroyed enemies leave behind parts that you can use to build other weapons, upgrades, and even different colored suits when you land near certain ‘build bots.’

Each level in the game is set on some kind of abandoned spacecraft or asteroid mine or whatnot, and the stages are like little mazes.  Sort of like a Metroid game, and each level takes about 45 minutes to beat.  Luckily the game autosaves after every room you enter, so that’s nice.  Levels have enemies to beat, puzzles to solve, and goodies to collect.  You’ll find blueprints to build new items, maps for new areas, logbooks for backstory, and even otter facts.  So the game could be considered somewhat educational, too.  Sometimes you can find a space urchin that you can hold onto.  Press a button repeatedly to crack it open and eat it, and you’ll get mega energy with a temporary shield and five way shots.  Usually these urchins are placed in areas where you have to fight tough enemy gauntlets.  When you finish an area, you can return to your spaceship to do other things.  Orbs you collect can power up a warp device to send one of your animal friends to your ship, which doesn’t do much but gives you some other animals to talk to.  You can also find a build bot here for upgrades, another crew member gives you your next objective, and a map for selecting levels.  Aside from the main story levels, there are also side stages that have mini challenges for you to tackle that earn you more goodies.  There are also some small multiplayer modes as well!

Really the only minor problem with the game I had was I found it wasn’t very clear how many hits Charlie can take before dying.  Also, I loved the cartoony graphics, but I wish they would’ve went with a more 16-bit pixel style, as the game really does remind me of animal mascot platformers from that era.  Normally I’m not a big fan of games that alter the controls to add more challenge, but they work so well here I didn’t mind it.  Overall I had a lot of fun with this game, and if you want a unique take on the 2-D mascot platformer, than you should check this one out, too.

Kid Factor:

Space Otter Charlie is rated E-10 with an ESRB descriptor of Fantasy Violence.  You mostly shoot robots, ghosts, and computers with lasers, and when you get hit yourself, you just let out a yelp and get pushed around a bit.  When you lose all your energy, it just shows a black and white cartoony picture of you with dizzy stars or covered in fire or whatnot.  Reading skill is needed for the text, and younger gamers may find it too difficult.

2 Responses to “Space Otter Charlie (PS4, Switch, Xbox One, PC)”

  1. I was wondering about this game. So glad you reviewed it!

  2. Should have been called “Rocket Otter.” 😉

Discussion Area - Leave a Comment

Tired of typing this out each time? Register as a subscriber!