The last few days have been very interesting, not just because I’ve been deep into the Final Fantasy Pixel Remasters on Switch and PS5, but also because I’ve spent a lot of time playing Super Meat Boy Forever ($0.99) on my iPhone and iPad following the little time I put into it on Steam Deck. As of last week, Super Meat Boy Forever for mobile is real, but is it spectacular? My opinion around it has gone back and forth in some ways, but I’ve ended up loving it. In this Super Meat Boy Forever mobile review, I’ll cover the iOS version, controls, controller support, the issues it has right now, and whether you should get it on another platform or stick to mobile.
If you’ve never heard of Super Meat Boy or Super Meat Boy Forever, the original Super Meat Boy is one of the best and hardest platformers ever. It felt like the start of us getting super hard platformers that we saw with the recent and beyond amazing Celeste. I love the original Super Meat Boy and have enjoyed playing it on every platform. When Super Meat Boy Forever was announced for mobile back in 2014, I was curious, but skeptical of how it would play out. Having avoided every release until recently playing it on Steam Deck, I get what Super Meat Boy Forever was aiming to do, and like it.
Super Meat Boy Forever includes levels that are algorithmically generated using smaller chunks. These smaller chunks, of which Super Meat Boy Forever includes thousands, are hand-crafted. So while it isn’t fully procedurally generated or not fully hand-crafted like the original, Super Meat Boy Forever tried to do something different, and it seems to have not hit for some. I somehow avoided the response to Super Meat Boy Forever when it hit other platforms, and have seen a lot of disappointment.
Having spent too much time in Super Meat Boy, recognizing mechanics like the fans or specific biomes and such in Super Meat Boy Forever never got old. I adored the changes to specific bosses and all the new content Super Meat Boy Forever features that make it refreshing for longtime fans and also a great way to get into Super Meat Boy for newcomers with its absolutely rock bottom asking price on mobile now.
As an endless runner, Super Meat Boy Forever controls perfectly on mobile. There are tutorials when new mechanics are introduced, and multiple level segments that let you get used to said mechanic before you’re thrown into levels that assume you know how things work. I tested Super Meat Boy Forever with touch controls, a controller on iPad, and both the Razer Kishi V2 and Backbone One PlayStation Edition on my iPhone 11. Super Meat Boy Forever is the first game where I vastly preferred using the Backbone One for its face buttons compared to the smaller ones on the Kishi V2. I initially hoped for a single-handed mode with portrait support given this is an auto-runner, but it wouldn’t work out practically given the levels and chunks of levels included.
Beyond the levels in the worlds and the bosses, the collectibles and challenges included for dark world and unlocking characters add a ton of replay value to what is already a game that will keep you busy for a long time with how it presents levels to you across runs. I’ve said it before, but it feels like an absolute steal at just $0.99 offering all of this.
In most situations, mobile games are priced lower than the PC and console versions. There are some instances of mobile games costing more, but usually they cost a fraction of what they do on other platforms. Super Meat Boy Forever is priced at $19.99 on other platforms, which some think is a bit too expensive. I expected it to eventually cost $5 or $10 on mobile and thought the former might go down better with the platform audience. A $0.99 price point isn’t something I expected. In a lot of ways, those who are remotely interested in Super Meat Boy Forever likely don’t even need a review because it is priced at only $0.99. I still thought this disparity in pricing is rare today, and feels like the team is undervaluing this game.
Super Meat Boy Forever on iOS has 30fps and 60fps modes. The default mode on my iPhone 11, iPhone 14 Plus, iPad Pro (2020), and iPhone 13 Mini was 60fps. I didn’t bother turning it down. I had no major performance hiccups, but did run into the game displaying some visual artifacts in some levels. This didn’t happen every time, and wasn’t on all devices.
The original Super Meat Boy soundtrack is as legendary as the game, and even though the newer ports feature an alternate soundtrack that I’ve slowly gotten used to, I initially wished Super Meat Boy Forever had a soundtrack like the original because the opening level music didn’t fit for me. The music got better further into the game though, but I still think this is one of Ridiculon’s weaker albums while their other work on The End is Nigh and The Binding of Isaac (Rebirth onwards) is great.
If you already own and enjoyed Super Meat Boy Forever on PC or console, the mobile version is still absolutely worth it at the low asking price. If you don’t, and are wondering where to get it, there isn’t anything that would warrant buying it on a non mobile platform right now based on the time I’ve put into Super Meat Boy Forever on Steam Deck, my laptop, iPhone, and iPad.
Super Meat Boy Forever is a 16:9 game so it doesn’t use the full display real estate on taller phones, and has black bars on those and iPads. I hope a future update can add some border options to avoid black bars, but the visuals and performance are good overall. In potential future updates, I’d also love to see proper iCloud save syncing. It would not work for me across any of the five devices I used with two different iCloud accounts set up. Barring that, the bugs like the visual glitches or some level-related issues that others have run into need to be addressed so Super Meat Boy Forever can reach its full potential on mobile.
In its current state, Super Meat Boy Forever is best on mobile, but the iOS version at least needs a bit more work. Despite the issues, I’ve loved most of what Super Meat Boy Forever has to offer, and it is hard to argue against it being worth the very low asking price right now. It took nearly a decade to hit the platform following its original announcement, but Super Meat Boy Forever for mobile is here, and the wait has been worth it.