It Takes Two – an engaging gameplay and strong family valuesPublished May 16, 2021
It Takes Two is a co-op platformer and action-adventure video game developed by Hazelight Studios and released by Electronic Arts in 2021. As a game that requires the collaboration of two players, It Takes Two can only be played online or locally, in the form of a split-screen.
Innovative and colorful, this game includes platform games aspects, and it encourages collaboration between players, which is why it comes without a single-player option. Overall, It Takes Two explores a unique topic rarely seen in gaming.
The gameplay centers around a couple getting divorced, and mysterious circumstances transfer their minds into two dolls that their daughter Rose created as the means to re-connect them through role-playing.
It all starts with Cody and May, a husband and wife, fighting because Cody believes May is working too much, and she thinks he fails to appreciate her work sufficiently. As a result, the divorce becomes inevitable, making their young daughter Rose turn to the “Book of Love” by Dr. Hakim.
She wishes for her parents to become close again and rekindle their relationship and friendship. Rose fell asleep with the tears falling on the dolls she made, which results in Cody and May waking up like dolls.
Terrified, the couple soon realizes they will have to collaborate to get their lives back and find a way to return to their bodies. However, Cody and May are not alone in this odd adventure. Dr. Hakim, a talking book, becomes their guide, determined to help them reconcile.
Although its premise sounds different and refreshing, is It Takes Two worth of your time, and can a journey of an about-to-get-divorced couple be engaging enough?
Here is what we thought after playing this game!
Creative, engaging, and unique
It Takes Two indeed requires two to enjoy, but you don’t have to depend on your partner to play because you can also band up with other players online. Co-operation is the essence of this game, but there is much more to it because the Hazelight Studios experimented with various mechanics to ensure the journey never feels repetitive.
The developers were notably playing with different ideas and approaches. It is why the game also has puzzle elements making it highly entertaining. They also paid attention to details to emphasize co-operation and communication between the players.
For instance, It Takes Two often provides the characters with items that only work when combined (e.g., the nails and hammer), but it never does it in a way you would expect. The game can be highly unpredictable and surprise you with the possible skills and functionalities.
Sometimes it might get too odd, such as when you discover Cody can turn into different plants. But you will rarely see these possibilities repeating. It is why you’ll always encounter new skills, objects, and ways to collaborate.
Thus, It Takes Two never fails to remind you how much better things work when you partner up opposing going solo. Yet, it is not all about collaboration, and the game provides you with a stellar and ever-changing environment that makes the game more engaging.
It Takes Two takes the movie Honey, I Shrunk the Kids to another level by generating Toy Story vibes and turning the ordinary life into a thrilling adventure.
From the moment they wake up like dolls in a shed away from the house, Cody and May have to find a way to go back to their daughter. But that’s going to be an exciting challenge because the couple will have to overcome various obstacles to return to Rose.
Even the old vacuum cleaner will work against their plan and try to exact its vengeance for not being fixed and cleaned timely. Cody and May will often slow down their own journey by starting pointless bickering about who is right and who is wrong.
Dr. Hakim will always be there to remind the couple they have to cooperate to succeed. The book will also provide them with complementary powers and skills that never stay long enough to become dull or pointless.
It Takes Two knows well when to introduce novel abilities and when to escort them. It also knows how to make the gameplay highly creative. Hence, don’t get surprised when a dragon starts chasing you and your (game) partner.
Overall, It Takes Two has stunning visuals and a balanced combination of mature and playful content. It satisfies the need for an aesthetic experience thanks to the warm and bright colors. The game has an artsy approach, which shows in distinct animations and a unique and detailed environment.
The soundtrack is also flawless, and it offers a variety of melodies, varying from rock and roll to sentimental instrumentals. Like the abilities, the music never becomes repetitive, and each level has well-matching sounds that never stick too long to bore you.
Although one wouldn’t describe the narrative as ground-breaking per se, the story feels genuine, and it stands out in a sea of battle royales and first-shooters. On the other side, it’s also a tad plausible because not every marriage can or should be fixed.
But It Takes Two subtly tries to convince you that a couple should always try to find a way to stay together for the child’s well-being. If you don’t mind its viewpoint, you will probably enjoy this game’s colorful visuals, engaging plot, and lack of repetitiveness.
A stellar co-op game
It Takes Two is innovative, and it succeeds in providing stellar co-op entertainment that never gets dull or repetitive.
However, if you dislike that the narrative centers around a couple who has to find a way to save their marriage, you might find this game pretentious.