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Squishies

Game review by
David Chapman, Common Sense Media
Squishies Game Poster Image
Bright VR puzzler has cute characters, inspires creativity.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

Players are challenged to navigate the Squishies through various obstacles to get them home. The game also explores creativity by allowing players to design and share their own creations.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The Squishies aren’t much more than animated objects to be pushed around and potentially punished by obstacles.

Ease of Play

The mechanics of the game are simple enough, as players use the Move controllers to push or pull the Squishies around. The difficulty ramps up quickly, though, as players come across tougher obstacles requiring more precise movement and timing.

Violence

The Squishies can take a fair amount of abuse, falling into water, dropping off cliffs, hitting traps, etc., but this is all done comically and to characters that are basically, well, “squishy” balls that roll around. No blood or gore exists here.

Sex
Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Squishies is a puzzle platforming game available for download exclusively on the PlayStation VR. The game challenges players to use the Move controllers to direct small rolling creatures, “Squishies,” through virtual obstacle courses. The game also includes a level editor, which allows players to create their own custom levels and share them with the online community. There's some potential minor violence as players move the Squishies through the stages, but there’s nothing graphic or explicit, and no blood or gore exists in the game. There's also no inappropriate content included. Parents should also be aware that virtual reality equipment makers don't recommend VR experiences for kids under 12 due to the potential impact the technology may have on younger players' physiological development.

User Reviews

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What's it about?

SQUISHIES is a virtual reality puzzle platform game full of color and creativity. This is a world inhabited by wacky little balls of personality known as “Squishies”. These roly-poly bundles of fun are living a carefree life, but they could use a little extra help to find their way home. This is where you come in. Teaming with your dual Alien Fish Friends, it’s up to you to push and pull the Squishies through more than 100 different levels, rolling them down hills, bouncing them off springs, and being the literal wind in their sails. You need to help save the Squishies and then try your hand at crafting your own unique puzzles using the in-game editor. You can also build your own challenging maps and share them with the online community while taking other players’ creations for a test spin.

Is it any good?

In a world where video games get more and more complicated, sometimes the simplest ideas are still the most fun. Squishies is a great example of this train of thought. The premise is about as basic as can be. Using two wands, you either suck or blow streams of air to maneuver little balls around from Point A to Point B in a 3D environment. Sure, the wands are weird alien space fish and the balls have eyes and teeth and make goofy little sounds as you push them around, but that just adds to the quirky appeal of the game.

The premise behind Squishies might be simple, but don’t think for a second that it’s easy. You need to think carefully when you're guiding the Squishies back to their home. Whether it’s blowing on a dandelion seed to reach a higher plateau or keeping a precarious balance while crossing over a vast ocean, you need to have plenty of patience and practice to make it through the game’s 100+ level strong Story mode. While the controls aren’t exactly the most precise, the way they’re used in the game (the fish blowing and sucking air) feels strangely intuitive. And despite the difficulty, even the toughest stages never quite reach the feeling of frustration. Each time you play, you can’t help but feel like you’re making just a bit more progress and feel motivated to get just a little further along. It also serves as great inspiration once you start to use the game’s Level Editor. Building stages in VR feels like you’re crafting something that’s genuinely substantial. It’s a creative playground that tests both your imagination and your ingenuity.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about VR technology. How has virtual reality evolved over the years? What are some of ways to use VR for entertainment, and what are of practical uses for the technology?

  • How do features like level editors help to encourage gamers’ creativity? What are some ways to further encourage an interest in game development?

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