Kersploosh! is a downloadable eShop game for the 3DS that came out a couple weeks back, and I finally had a moment to sit down and play through the 10 stages that make up the content in this appropriately priced $2.99 title. The gameplay for Kersploosh! revolves around one simple concept, dropping an object into a well and guiding it through its descent until it hits bottom.
You’ve got a number of objects to drop, starting off with a simple stone and a rubber ball, but expanding into items like Wooden Fish, a Mutagen Droplet, and even Babushka Dolls. These items unlock after clearing levels, with a handful of hidden unlocks based on other requirements. There are 10 wells in total to clear, with a few that represent themes or gimmicks, like traversing through the dark with low visibility.
Gameplay is reminiscent of those uncontrollable falling or flying sequences that tend to pop up in action games like God of War. As your stone or other object falls down the well, you need to use the analog stick to steer around various objects impeding your destination. Most objects have a certain amount of health, which varies from one object to the next. Every time you slam into something, whether that’s the wall of the well, a pizza slice, an oscillating fan blade, breakable plates and stars, or whatever random objects inhabit the well, you’ll lose some life.
The challenge presented by Kersploosh! is two-fold. One, you need to make it to the bottom intact otherwise you’ll have to restart. And two, you want to try and go as fast as possible. Obviously running into objects is going to slow your descent quite a bit. You can pick up speed by navigating through the center of donuts, which vary in size and location spread throughout the interior of the well. Successfully passing through the center of one will grant you a speed boost, with most of these donuts being placed closed together in order to help you pick up speed quickly.
The downside here obviously comes from the loss of control when going extremely fast. So there’s a risk/reward element in play that balances out the difficulty. Also, the various objects you use all have attributes and stats that affect their normal rate of descent, and how much they benefit from the optional speed boosts. This makes each object’s fall through any given well pretty unique.
The end goal here comes in the form of local leaderboards, which allow for up to 15 entries. The leaderboards are listed for each well, posting best times, the user name, and the stone used. The biggest downside is that there’s no online functionality, instead opting to use StreetPass as a way of sharing scores with other players.
Overall, for $3, it’s a fun little time waster. The 3D effect is well done here, and theconcept of the game benefits greatly from having the 3D slider cranked up. But not having some sort of online leaderboard functionality is definitely the biggest drawback, making Kersploosh! a lot less interesting unless you’ve got other friends nearby with a 3DS and the game to StreetPass with or household members that are interested in playing. High Score challenges aren’t that fun when you’re trying to top your own posted times.
I’d say it’s worth picking up if you’ve got someone else to compete against, but if you’re going to play it by your lonesome, wait for a possible sale or for it show up as a Nintendo Club reward freebie at some point in the future. It doesn’t take very long to go through the 10 wells offered, and while some of the optional objects are worth unlocking, they don’t add enough to the core game to make it worth coming back for more without that added incentive of competing against others.