Good Job! Review

Nepotism Simulator 2020

You’d be forgiven for thinking that nepotism makes the world go round… well, for the relatives of the rich and powerful anyway. So it’s no surprise that when Good Job! casts you as the son of the CEO of a faceless mega-corporation, you’re set on a rapid, stress-free path up through the ranks to reach a cushy post in the company’s executive offices.

You’ll still have to start from the very bottom and work your way up though, and there’s more than a few slapstick pratfalls to enjoy in this quirky physics-based puzzler.

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What’s atypical about the setting in Good Job! is that you’re stepping into a mega-corporation that’s incompetent on every possible level, and filled with staff who’ll simply see a problem and go “meh”. You’re the dogsbody that can step in and get things done, with a plucky go-getting attitude that makes up for the lethargic indifference of your father’s employees. Sure, you might need to break a few metaphorical eggs to get things done, but you get results!

Those eggs might be metaphorical, but the full-sized windows, walls, office equipment, and everything else you come across isn’t. While you can try and take a cautious approach to manhandling a person-sized projector through an office, you can also set up a surprisingly stretchy power cord to slingshot it straight through a few walls to get to the presentation that needs it.

Each floor of the company features three levels, each a unique situation and scenario, before a final stage on the floor brings those ideas and elements together. You might be trying to corral wayward employees back to a meeting, spread out Wi-Fi routers to ensure that everyone has access, or manhandling a jelly blob through an industrial facility, trying to suck up more of the pink gloop until it meets a required shipping size.

You also have the option to play in co-op, with a dynamic split screen that lets you both wander off in different directions and wreak havoc in separate parts of the level. For speed running, it’s bound to be a delight, as each player can take on alternative tasks or prepare different parts of the solution to the level’s puzzle.

Each level is rated based on time, the cost of damage you’ve incurred and the number of things you broke, but really the only rating that matters for your overall score is time. Even then, just completing the level is good enough to unlock the next. So when even the most cautious approach will still break things, and when some of the situations require you to get past a locked door, why even bother? The game is designed with chaos, destruction and carnage in mind, but sometimes it gets a bit too physics-y.

You’ll often find that you’re trying to drag something around, and it’s just getting snagged on a stack of cardboard boxes, or it’s a bit too awkward to manoeuvre it through a tight space or around a corner. More troublesome is all the debris that you can create, which just clutters up the place with even more things that get in the way. It wouldn’t be so bad if you could use your jump to help jiggle things loose, but it’s such a piddly little jump that it’s no use even at the best of times, and jumping while trying to carry something just sees you drop it. We’ve had similar physics-based puzzling in games for years now, and honestly I can find it a touch tiresome these days.

I had to restart a couple of levels because of the sheer chaos I’d managed to cause that was then making it more difficult than it was worth to complete them. It’s also definitely not helped by the inconsistent collision system of the game. You can glitch objects through those springy power cords, forklift trucks often have a difficult time picking up objects, or those objects alternately defy gravity while balanced on its fork or fall through when you bump them into something.

On the whole, the Nintendo Switch takes all of this in its stride though. With a cutesy art style that’s more than a little reminiscent of Portal’s Aperture Science cartoons, the game looks and runs well. You can set off explosive canisters and have them flying around smashing into things, and the game’s frame rate doesn’t really suffer too much. It’s only the most ridiculous of explosive events that see the game start to chug. The only real concession to the hybrid console is that some objects like flexible pipes seem to have a reduced refresh to its physics.

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Summary
As far as physics puzzling games go, Good Job! does a pretty good job of it. There's a few rough edges and occasional annoyances from the genre as a whole, but with a quirky set up and visual style, there's fun to be had climbing this particular corporate ladder.
Good
  • Cute visual style
  • It's fun destroying levels on the way to solving the puzzle
  • Plenty of inventive tasks
  • Playing in co-op
Bad
  • Sometimes there's just too many physics objects in the way
  • Collision detection often glitches
  • Some repetitive chores
7
Written by
I'm probably wearing toe shoes, and there's nothing you can do to stop me!