We Are Fuzzy has recently experienced their first debut video game title, Sleep Tight, and I was one of the lucky few that got a chance to experience the excitement that goes behind a video game launch. This impression dives not only into my thoughts on the video game but what went down last week at the #Sleeptightslumberparty or otherwise known as Sleep Tight Slumber Party event.
I would like to take this opportunity to do some full disclosure right away. We Are Fuzzy not only provided copies of Sleep Tight for purposes of coverage but they are also responsible for the trip and stay to experience the launch event, but more on that soon.
We Are Fuzzy
As mentioned, Sleep Tight was created by development studio We Are Fuzzy, which is their first video game launch. However, the talented crew that worked on the game comes packed with heaps of experience from programming and visual effects for other video game titles along with cinema films. Co-founders Banks Boutté and Maxx Burman had been working on this title for years though the actual game came from Maxx Burman and programmer Jed Jackoway who thought up the groundwork for Sleep Tight when they were just kids. Fast forward years later and the duo had the know-how and ability to turn this childhood dream into a reality.
Sleep Tight is an arcade-style twin-stick shooter that is split-up in a day and night cycle. Players step into the shoes of a young child, a slew of which can be unlocked, as they prepare to survive the night. In order to do so, players must build up their fort and defenses during the day while at night monsters flood the room.
Sleep Tight Slumber Party
On July 25, 2018, through July 27, 2018, We Are Fuzzy invited streamers, YouTubers, NFL athletes, familiar Hollywood faces, and media gamers to join together at Las Vegas. Specifically, the Rio where the group of about thirty met up at The Wall, a gaming center setup filled with Alienware gaming stations armed with copies of Sleep Tight, headsets and webcams to allow everyone to play the game while also streaming the title to their audiences. Joined into the room included the likes of Nintendrew, Alex CND, Beeyoo, Toky, So Many Badgers, and Bighungry2x, who attempted to stay up through the night and play the game leading up to its official launch.
In a somewhat game inception, I was going through a Sleep Tight run as the character Brooke when Banks alerted me that I was sitting right across from Alison Haislip (Attack of the Show! & The Voice) who had voiced the character during the production of the game. Looking back at it, there had to have been a real joy for the developers to see so many walks of life from media, profession gamers to televised hosts actively playing through their creation, all of which had their own unique strategies to progress further.
Likewise, this event also allowed a look inside of the development studios process of preparing a game launch. Minutes away from the start of the stream I saw the scramble and pressure the developers went under as they successfully cleared up a bug to fix a fullscreen issue. It was a real hands-on-deck moment that shows just how much work, time and strain goes into a game before its readily presented for the event and later its official release.
Visuals & Mechanics
Once the stream started the game was featured right on Mixer for the duration of the weekend. Thousands tuned in to see this animated and lively video game being played live leading to its availability online. Speaking of the animated visuals, it’s pretty clear that the developers took inspiration from Disney Pixar as Sleep Tight is inviting as a family friendly video game.
Likewise, I personally feel that the game mechanics were easy to pick up. However, that can be a bit deceiving as you’ll soon find out that the game difficulty definitely ramps up making it a title you’re going to end up sitting on the edge of your seat as you run out of dart bullets or when your last wall of defenses have been breached.
Much like I mentioned earlier in this article, the game puts players against monsters at night. Depending on how far you make it within the game will determine the various monsters and skins you’ll come across. By defeating the monsters you’ll be rewarded with Stars and each day you survive you’ll gain an assortment of Suns.
Through the use of Suns and Stars, players can save up and use these currencies as a means to purchase a plethora of upgrades, defenses, weapons, and health. At first, the game acts like a standard arcade game where you’ll have to attempt to survive as long as possible. However, you’ll quickly discover the strategy that goes into making upgrades and how to fortify your pillow forts to withstand the enemy.
What may work up to night twenty may prove to be useless as you reach night thirty causing you to rethink your strategy and skills after each death. Speaking of the day and night cycle, it’s worth noting that every ten days there will be what is known as a Blood Moon. This is indicated by an alert along with a red overlay over the room. Essentially these nights are about thirty seconds longer where you’ll have to attempt to fight off the random monster spawns just a bit longer.
Currently, the game is only available as a singleplayer experience. So with that said, if you were hoping for some type of competitive game mode in-game or a cooperative experience with a friend then you may be a bit disappointed. However, the game does sport a leaderboard where you can attempt to reach the top and best your friends scores with each character that you unlock in the game.
While on the subject of characters, the game offers a nice variety of protagonists to take control of. Those that are locked will display just what you need to do in order to unlock the character and after being unlocked you’ll be presented with information regarding the characters difficulty level along with the various equipment the character comes packed with. Furthermore, you’ll find that there are other characters included into the mix that alters the game mode such as making the title a first-person shooter.
For instance, Brooke is one of the first characters you’ll unlock and she comes equipped with an assault dart gun weapon which is helpful to take out several monsters that begin to gang up.
My time with the event came to an end the day after the title officially launched. Everyone gathered in the morning as we counted down the seconds leading up to Sleep Tight’s official launch and just like that the years of work and preparation was finally over for We Are Fuzzy. Though I don’t think my time with the game will be coming to an end anytime soon. This is a title that will keep you coming back striving to find that perfect combination to last at least one more night and its a great family friendly game suitable for kids.
I for one have thought about strategies after ending the game. If you’re like me you’ll probably be wondering if making a certain upgrade, turret placement, wall, or skill unlock would have made any difference to the number of nights your character was able to survive.
Currently, Sleep Tight is only $14.99 which I think is a solid price to jump on this title. However, as of right now, the game is only available on Nintendo Switch and Steam platforms. With that said, we’ll, of course, keep tabs on the game if developers eventually release it on any other platforms or if any new content is included in the game.
Full Disclosure: Travel, stay and copies of the game were provided to cover the game event.