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Review: Balan Wonderworld – The Balan-dest Platformer On Xbox Series X

Everyone’s mad here.

When Balan Wonderworld was announced last year, it was a game that seemed completely up our alley. It checked all the boxes for what we look for in a platformer. Unique abilities, colourful worlds, and personality busting from its seams. With the talent involved and being lead by Yuji Naka, the creator of classic franchises such as Sonic the Hedgehog, it seemed like a sure win. Even when the lacklustre demo launched earlier this year, we held faith and hope that buried somewhere in there was a great game. Unfortunately, if anything, the demo highlighted the best parts of Balan Wonderworld, as it only goes downhill from there.

The game is a hard experience to explain, due to the fact that we’re not entirely sure what’s going on ourselves. At the beginning, you’re presented with a very basic character selection which leads to a sad backstory. Then, you stumble across Balan Theatre, ran by the mysterious (and to be honest, kind of creepy) Balan. What unfolds is a journey across several worlds, helping people who are downtrodden, before an inevitable evil presence appears.

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