Moving Out revels in slapstick and improvised chaos, charging you with extracting various unwieldy household items in pursuit of accolades and bragging rights. It's also exponentially more fun when you're lumbering around with a friendly crew.
It's always a treat to encounter a title that places the fun at the forefront; nothing beats the pop of a toaster's power cord or a well timed box through the window extraction. Moving Out knows exactly what it is, and through that clarity of vision, SMG Studio and DEVM Games have crafted a co-operative action puzzler that is absolutely worth investigating.
Take the mad cap physics of something like Overcooked and smoosh them with a healthy sprinkle of trial and error lunacy and you'll have a pretty good idea of what to expect.
The map over world is a top down Crazy Taxi on steroids, character emotes bring the laughs, and there's even a dyslexic friendly option for text display accessibility. Moving Out is full of these little touches.
You're thrust into ever escalating scenarios, tasked with getting designated objects into a removal van in the most efficient way possible. Don't be deceived by its simplicity; Moving Out isn't afraid to throw you a curveball every now and then.
Expect curious turtles that block your path, ghosts that send you back to the start, and other surprises along the way, as you navigate each new challenge.
Although playable solo, and balanced to be a tad more forgiving, it can be a bit of a chore to slog through on your own, especially when dealing with heavier items. The game is so clearly balanced for co-op action, and with specific moves designed to encourage meaningful teamwork, it's definitely best with friends.
Levels get increasingly bonkers as you progress, with unlockable optional tasks that encourage you to revisit previously beaten stages. Shaving off a few seconds for a better final award can be an addicting distraction.
Controls are smartly simple, although we found it a tad frustrating at times getting stuck on parts of the environment. It's fairly infrequent, so hardly a slippery leaves on the line type scenario by any stretch of the imagination, but it remains worth noting.
This is a game that thrives on the inherent chaos of couch multiplayer. As we're sure you can imagine, things can get pretty heated when the clock is ticking, so there's little room for error or lacklustre coordination. Prepare for a decidedly passionate response from your friends, as you fumble your way to victory.
The lack of online functionality is hugely disappointing, as sharing this in a remote capacity with a wider audience could have been a heap of fun. Despite the omission, there's plenty of content to enjoy with up to four players locally.
Graphics and sounds
Comparisons with Overcooked, Catastronauts, and the like are all but inevitable, but the visual aesthetic definitely suits the jolly, feel good vibes and tongue in cheek humour. Voice acting isn't implemented throughout the entire game, which is a massive shame as the writing is really on point.
Moving Out has one of the funniest tutorials of any game this year. It won't take long for the penny to drop on that one, particularly with dialogue like "Lift with your back!" and "Slap that ghost".
Character customisation is a nice touch, with some truly bizarre creatures to choose from. Any game that allows you to create a ginger cat with an eye patch is a winner in our books.
Moving Out is a riotous good time, with enough challenges and new ideas to keep you and your friends thoroughly entertained.
Moving Out is available now, for PS4, Xbox One, Xbox Game Pass, PC, and Switch.
Review copy provided by Team17.