Leo’s Fortune began its journey as an iOS app back in 2014 and was well received. OK, it was VERY well received. At long last, it’s made the jump to home consoles – and glorious 1080p – on both PC, PS4 and Xbox One consoles in this update. Unlike most puzzle games you find, Leo’s Fortune isn’t terribly difficult to figure out and when you do it resembles a more enjoyable (at least in my opinion) version of Sonic the Hedgehog. That’s if you gave Sonic gorgeous back drops and clever puzzles that sizzle with a sort of old-world steampunk vibe. And gameplay that didn’t suck.
For those who missed out on the mobile version here’s the deal: you star as Leo, basically a hipster tribble living the steampunk lifestyle. Basically, he’s an engineering koosh ball with a boss mustache. As a very successful engineer and inventor, Leo has amassed a great fortune. Unfortunately, someone has taken it upon themselves to stick their fingers into the pot and rob him. Being so incredibly awesome means that you have enemies and to Leo these are mostly his family and former friends.
Thankfully, whoever took his beloved treasure left a trail of breadcrumbs in the form of gold coins for you to follow. Each level has poor Leo speculating as to which of his many, many enemies robbed him and why.
Leo’s Fortune is a very simple and straightforward platformer spread out over 5 chapters divided into two dozen levels with an extra bonus level per chapter. Unlike the mobile versions you’ll move Leo using the stick or D-pad and there are only two buttons in use here. He doesn’t jump but once he gets air after sliding up hills or off bits of scenery, he can puff out and float/glide or make himself compact so he quickly falls back to solid ground. If you find yourself submerged in water, which you will, the rules are reversed.
Yes, it’s a lot like Kirby but we all love Kirby so it’s all good. The fun comes from how you determine to best use Leo’s skills and each puzzle solution can hinge on these decisions.
When you first begin the game you’re given only a basic idea of how to use Leo. The puzzles are not always obvious and vary in myriad ways from level to level. In fact, many of the puzzles have more than one way to solve them but that depends on if you care about gold, points, and achievements. Scattered throughout you’ll find bits of graffiti, which helps you avoid inevitable death. On this, Leo doesn’t get killed in the traditional sense; dying means you come back at the last place you successfully finished i.e. checkpoints.
You have unlimited lives and time; your only goal is level advancement. You can collect every gold coin, beat your previous time, collect all the special cogs, and never lose a life to earn maximum gold stars if you want to pad things out somewhat. But the only point to this is to unlock achievements. It’s a lot like searching for all those damn flags in Assassin’s Creed.
Frankly, there’s nothing I didn’t like about Leo’s Fortune. For a port of a port of a port of a port of a… you get my port, er… point, it’s a fantastic game and as enjoyable as it ever was. The gameplay is so simple anyone can (and should) play it. The graphics are stunning – even more so when you consider it began as a mobile game – and you’re able to interact with nearly everything you see. The puzzles are fun and challenging, but not to the point where you want to throw your controller halfway across the room.
Mobile games aren’t known for their grandiose stories so you’d expect a console port would follow suit, but Leo’s Fortune is somewhat of the exception. Leo is so deliciously diabolical and greedy that he’s irresistible, not unlike Nintendo’s Wario. His obsession over his loot, who might have it in for him, that you can’t help but smile as the story unfolds and he begins to relish in his predicament. Sure, it’s not a The Last of Us or Until Dawn, but it’s a nice splash of much-needed whimsy that we seldom see in any game these days.
To sum up, I love Leo’s Fortune , and recommend this console update for anyone who missed out on the mobile version. My only complaint, and it’s a minor one at that, is that it’s just too short! I wanted more levels and more of an interactive story. Maybe a sequel will help curb these shakes, but I thoroughly enjoyed my time with Leo – however brief it was – and look forward to more in the future. For now, however, unless you’re one of those players that craves 100% completion and gathering all of the possible achievements, don’t expect much more after you get your initial fix.