Party Animals, by Beijing studio Recreate Games, is the upcoming party beat-’em-up where players take control of cuddly critters in hilarious melee brawls.
The game isn’t out yet (it’s supposed to release before the end of the year), but the success of its short-lived October demo has industry experts abuzz.
Some are already comparing Party Animals to the late-summer hit, Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout.
Party Animals’ week-long demo in early October pulled some surprising numbers on Twitch. (Source: TwitchTracker)
A quick look at the numbers reveals why there’s so much excitement surrounding Party Animals.
The latest Party Animals demo was made available from October 4 to October 13 on Steam and quickly worked its way up the Steam and Twitch charts.
On October 9, streamers on Twitch played Party Animals to a combined concurrent viewership of 113,590 people.
Not long after, on October 12, 135,843 players logged into Steam simultaneously to play Party Animals — trouncing popular, big-name titles like Rocket League and Team Fortress 2.
While there’s quite a way to go before they catch up to Fall Guys, this is a promising start for a game that hasn’t even released.
Mechanically, Party Animals has more in common with 2014’s Gang Beasts than with Fall Guys.
It’s more than a passing resemblance — the similarities run deep enough to make the name of Party Animals’ developer, Recreate Games, feel a bit too on-the-nose to be a coincidence.
In both games, players and their friends take part in clumsy ragdoll scuffles in a variety of gimmick-based arenas.
Combat is physics-based, weighty, and complex enough to make play just a bit awkward and unpredictable.
You don’t throw a punch or swing a weapon; you hold an arm (or weapon) out and rotate your upper body.
Inertia is both your friend and worst enemy — it lets you perform explosive haymakers to knock the daylights out of your friends or can cause you to lose balance and go toppling off the wing of a plane.
At its core, Party Animals may be indistinguishable from Gang Beasts, but its overall polish is what lifts Party Animals head and shoulders above the game it imitates.
Everything, from the animations in Party Animals’ menus to the quality of its textures and models, seems designed for popular appeal.
Lighting is softer and more natural in Party Animals, and the backgrounds are simple but impressive.
The characters in Party Animals also feel lighter and a touch speedier and more responsive than Gang Beasts’, making combat pacier and more satisfying.
Performance-wise, Party Animals even runs better than Gang Beasts, especially on lower-end rigs.
Party Animals will be launching on PC and consoles in late 2020.
There has been no confirmation as to which consoles it will release on, though we’d be surprised if we don’t see Party Animals on PS4, Xbox One, and the Nintendo Switch.
The demo’s success has also spurred Recreate Games to begin development on a mobile version.