My wife and I play video games together, it’s our bonding time. So, when the opportunity to cover co-op games comes up either for review or for convention demo coverage, we absolutely take it. Bread & Fred is a co-op platformer developed by SandCastles Studios and published by Apogee Entertainment. In it, one player plays as Bread and the other is Fred, a pair of mountain climbing penguins tethered together.
In this platformer, you will need to cooperate to jump and climb all the way up to the peak of the mountain. The tether works in two ways. As you can expect, this connection between the penguins comes with physics that helps you get to the top of the mountain. For starters, if you move onto a small platform Bread or Fred can jump off the ledge while the other adorable penguin anchors themself. Once anchored the penguin that’s now hanging off the platform, you swing back and forth. Once enough momentum is built up, the anchored penguin releases, allowing you to swing onto the next platform. Additionally, you can hold on to ledges while the other character swings to the next repeating the process until you reach safety.
Another bright element to this cozy game is that it’s actually difficult to play. It takes communication and coordination in spades. That said, if you’re struggling, Bread & Fred has the perfect ways to make the world more easily traversed while still challenging. For starters, you can turn on save points. Since you’re scaling a mountain, one miss can send you sliding down to the beginning of your climb and lose you ample amounts of time in the process. To help curve this, you can enable checkpoint flags that you choose where to place. With no restrictions on when you can place them, you can add one after the completion of each challenging jump to save your progress.
Additionally, to make the platforming easier, you can enable pulling the other player up with a rope instead of needing to swing them up onto the platform which can add more time. Finally, you can also turn on infinite jumps to make the platforming from one area to the next easier. While we didn’t use all of these in our playthrough we get to see how each of them works and for those who are looking for a co-op experience without heavy challenge or even if you just hit a rough patch you need to get through. This also helps widen the age range for players as well.
Bread & Fred is a simple game that’s executed well. While we played on the same keyboard at the PAX West 2022 demo, you’ll be able to play on different PCs and controllers when the game launches.
Bread & Fred is available to wishlist on Steam now with a demo available now, although a full release hasn’t been announced yet.