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High On Life Review (PS5) – An Irreverent, Hilarious FPS with Attitude

High On Life Review(PS5) – I love Squanch Games and I also really enjoy Rick and Morty. High on Life, the latest from Squanch Games will either tickle you silly, as it did me or annoy the hell out of you. I adored Accounting+ and Trover Saves the Universe and if you’re a fan, from a tonal perspective, you know what you are getting into here.

Sick humour, dick jokes and stupidity drip through High on Life like a leaky U-bend. As I Started the game and was bombarded with fucks and a tutorial that made me laugh out loud. I knew I was going to giggle my way through this quirky title.

In the tutorial, you are guided to double jump over a gap, you know normal tutorial stuff. In High On Life, however, you fall down the hole just to be greeted with “Oh yeah, we don’t have a double jump in this game” It’s bloody hilarious.

High on Life Review (PS5) – Pew, Pew, Poo, Poo

Laugh out Loud Shooting

In High On Life, you are dragged away from playing your favourite old-school video game as your world is attacked by aliens who think your race would make the galaxy’s next best hallucinogen. Yep, that’s right, the human race is being made into the next recreational drug and it’s up to you and an array of talking weaponry to stop it. Good times!

High On Life plays out a lot like Fallout or other games of that ilk. It’s semi-open areas with missions to complete and collectables, upgrades and other shenanigans to cut through. Your main task, however, is to kill the cartel that is making Earth its own private crack den.

From a story standpoint, I found High On Life engaging and very amusing. Your mileage may vary but I love toilet humour, stupid jokes and most things people find well below the belt.

Even the trophy list is great as I killed an annoying child in the first real area I got to and unlocked a trophy called ‘You can’t do that in Fallout’. Fabulous stuff.

A Dirty Sandbox

What I was taken aback by was how much of a competent shooter High On Life was. You have multiple weapons with loads of upgrades and special abilities and the moment-to-moment shooter sections were very entertaining. As were the game’s bosses, they were all different and had their own tactics and strategies.

Yes, the enemy variety was on the low side and most fights trivial but with all these fun tools at your disposal, each fight was a sandbox of entertaining destruction.

While we are on the topic of weaponry, for those who have not seen any details on his game, they are all living creatures. They talk to you, goad you on, take the mickey and have lives of their own. The knife you unlock early on also talks, and is a psychopath and horribly entertaining.

As with most of the NPCs and the weaponry, you can tone down the talking in the options, which is great because if you are not a fan of this type of material, I can see them getting very annoying, rather quickly.

High On Life does have sort of a Metroidvania feel too. As you unlock more options for your foul-mouthed armaments you can reach new heights and returning to old areas will see you unlocking more secrets, chests and loot.

There are in-jokes and easter eggs at every turn and exploring High On Life’s vibrant universe was always rewarding and worthwhile.

Bright, Beautiful and Brash

The presentation style for High On Life, like the other Squanch games titles, is both beautiful and bleak. Vibrant colours paint a lovely dystopian alien universe, sprinkled with uncanny characters, weird and wonderful locations that always keep you guessing what’s around the next corner. Exploring this game is a joy and the bright, abnormal art style does it no harm.

It’s the same story with the sound-work, music and the writing. I put writing in this section because it goes hand-in-hand with the voice acting to create a witty, unnerving look into a sci-fi universe that’s dank, dark and at times, unsettling.

The music is punchy and fits the setting perfectly. It ramps up when in battle and propels you through High On Life’s many skirmishes. Both the sound design and art style really add to the overall weirdness High On Life portrays.

I did have the odd issue with performance, though very rare. I had a bit of slowdown in frantic battles and one instance where I had to restart the game due to it crashing. It was very rare and not game-breaking in any way but it was definitely a thing. Easily ironed out with patches though and it never detracted from the fun I was having.

A Must Have, Barrel of Laughs

High On Life is a cosmic blast. There’s a trophy for carrying a bucket of ejaculate to the end of the game for Christ’s sake! While I don’t recommend this to everyone, I recommend it highly to people like me.

People with a twisted sense of humour, people who like dumb shit and definitely gamers who like pieces of entertainment to push the boundaries of what’s politically correct.

I am so glad High on Life exists and it is a pleasure to play something that’s laugh-out-loud funny and so very different, in a grey market full of copy-and-paste generic games.

High On Life is out now on PS5 and PS4.

Review code kindly provided by the publisher.



The Final Word

High On Life is dirty, rambunctious and a hell-load of fun. While the comedy, writing and voice acting will not be everyone's cup of tea, the self-referential, meta humour really tickles me silly. It's nice to play a game that does not take itself seriously, pushes the boat out a little and strays from the mainstream cookie-cutter formula. I had a lot of fun with High On Life, its not perfect by any means but it did it's job and kept me truly entertained throughout.