GoatUp Review

By , on September 15, 2011

  • Publisher: Llamasoft
  • Genre: Action
  • Released: 13 Sep, 2011
  • Size: 9.9 MB
  • Price: FREE!
Download on the AppStore
4 out of 5


  • It's modern, it's retro, it's a visual eyeful.
  • Mixes up the vertical platforming formula with some truly odd objectives.
  • Fluid controls; punishes players for being impatient while also rewarding risk-taking behavior.


  • Quirky style may not be to everyone's tastes; absurdism distilled in to game form.
  • 'Advertising' pushed on the player every time you restart.


GoatUp fits in nicely with the Llamasoft pantheon of abstract titles, though this vertical platformer certainly feels 'straighter' than most even despite twists like killing off enemies with your offspring.

  • Full Review
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There exist in this world a whole host of games that you either 'get' or you 'don't. Often they border on artistic works, poking fun at or otherwise playing around with the conventions of gaming for its own agenda, but ultimately some sort of personal understanding or connection is needed to forgive the quirks these sorts of games create.

In the grand scheme of Llamasoft's past work, GoatUp is perhaps the least challenging title to approach and that's saying a lot when you're playing a goat who creates children by eating grass and subsequently uses them as a weapon.

Whether you choose the swipe or tilt controls to move your goat back and forth, the real objective of GoatUp is to survive long enough to create as many children as possible while climbing a never-ending vertical stack of platforms. As you crop the grass you'll also uncover random objects ranging from the icons of previous Llamasoft games to various weird and interesting creatures and items.

In typical style the game sports a retro pixel-art on black-background scheme reminiscent of old-school arcade games while also pairing it with simple 3D effects, allowing the player to rotate around the vertical pillar you're jumping up. While not as garish as previous games, GoatUp is still a bright and colorful title despite its minimalist design.

Ultimately there's not a lot to GoatUp; while the core idea is bizarre, the gameplay doesn't stray far from the basic vertical platforming concept. Neat touches like placing 'billy goats' in risky locations add a risk vs. reward factor, but it's not enough to make the game stand on its own feet.

If you're a fan of Llamasoft's previous titles I won't need to convince you to try this one. For everyone else it's worth throwing caution to the wind and seeing if GoatUp clicks with you, but if you're sick of endless titles you can pass it up for now.


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