Imagine that banana you’re planning to eat for breakfast suddenly told you to blow things up and kill everyone in sight.
I mean, you’d probably die of shock, especially if it suddenly started rounding up its buddies Apple, Orange and Grape to build up its own Fruit Salad army.
But what a sight that would be, eh?
Yes, Pedro is a talking banana and he’s out for blood. If Geoff Keighley decided to make an award for most unexpected, unorthodox character in a game, the fruit would win.
And, of course, it’s published by Devolver. The studio that already gave us a game about an Ape pounding things to smush to the tune of jazz and walking dots involved in major conspiracies earlier this year.
This is a game that is absolutely, unequivocally in their wheelhouse.
To be completely honest, My Friend Pedro is a game that’s best sold by its gifs. If there was such a term, this is the most gifable game I’ve ever played.
I can write all the glorious words in the world to try and sell this to you, but what you’ve seen on the screen already, in videos and on social media, that’s Pedro at its best.
I feel like I want to constantly record the action on screen because there’s always something incredible happening. I mean, I wouldn’t have room for anything else on my Switch, but maybe that’s ok.
It might be a ludicrous back flip followed by a bullet ricocheting off a frying pan which gives me a clean headshot. Or one bad guy eating my skateboard while another gets a nutshot, then I somehow end up back on the board after it.
My Friend Pedro is unpredictable, and that’s often what makes it so immensely satisfying.
The best thing I can say is you can pull off the stuff you see in those animations easily and effectively. And it all feels so incredibly slick.
But it’s not all just cool somersaults and thrilling action, there’s some real headscratchers here too. For instance, you can slow down time for added precision, but also use those ricochets to hit distant platforms closer to you.
This will allow you to bounce between walls to reach new heights, or slide down shafts to hit new lows. As you can imagine, this lends itself to some crazy scenarios.
But in truth, I found some of the puzzles got in the way of the action. After the explosive opening chapter, the game gets a little bit bogged down by its smartening level design.
It’s an odd transition at first. You’ve been splitting heads open like coconuts and unloading Uzi clips into multiple foes at once, then, suddenly, flicking switches and bypassing revolving doors.
My Friend Pedro is fun and has fast-paced action, which makes its reliance on platforming and problem-solving a surprising, and occassionally confusing departure.
The smart level design does enough to keep things interesting, though, even if this does feel a bit like two games in one. You’ll always feel like the game has something different to offer as you move through to its finale.
The game’s first impression is definitely the best, though. With that initial taste of the rip-roaring soundtrack, bloodthirsty violence, quirky humour, and head-spinning acrobatics, those opening moments make a strong impact.
And while the game definitely finds a way to stick its landing, It’s a bit of a shame that the content sandwiched between has its ups and downs – literally and otherwise.
All told, My Friend Pedro is a fun game and so appropriately a handheld game, making Switch a very natural home. It will definitely satiate your appetite in looking for something a bit different.
And no, the banana definitely didn’t tell me to say that. Maybe..
My Friend Pedro is now available on Switch and PC.
Review code kindly provided by Devolver
Played on Switch