With all of the hype surrounding the World Cup and the beginning of the Premier League, you would think that there’s no room for any other kind of football-based entertainment for a good while, right? Well apparently there’s simply no limit to the amount of football that everyone must endure, even if it is in flash form on the internet which is why Monkey Kick Off is a game that exists to please the people of the world that feel 24 hours a day and 7 days a week simply isn’t enough hours/days in which to fit their football action.
Monkey Kick Off is a little different from the usual 90-minute laboriousness of regular football (or soccer if you’re American) in that it is actually a pleasant little distance-based launch game with a football theme. Forget pathetic dives at the smallest gust of wind, bad calls from referees, and Suarez biting pretty much anything that he can get his teeth near: Monkey Kick Off is as pleasant as they come and “football” enough to please football fans whilst not coming with the usual baggage that the sport drags with it.
Monkey Kick Off is a game that is of course themed around football but is at its heart a distance-based launch game, the object you are launching being a football and the character launching it is a Monkey. Why a monkey? Because the game can is why, and the goal of getting the ball to the Monkey Village 4000 miles away makes a lot more sense if the game is ape-themed as well as shot through with the subject of football.
You may be pleased to hear that the game is as simple as launch/distance based games come as well. Gameplay consists of clicking either the mouse or any key on the keyboard in order to get the monkey on the left hand side of the screen to kick the ball into the air.
The timing of your mouse/keyboard click makes all the difference since a well-time stroke will send the ball careering through the air towards the Monkey Village whereas a poorly-time click will result in disappointment for all involved.
Each kick of the ball is measured in meters; each maximum distance under 4000 meters that you managed to set is then recorded as a personal best and you must then kick the ball again to see if you can do better. If you’ve played games like Berserk Ball 2 or Homerun In Berserk Land: Berserk Ball before, then this kind of launch game will be somewhat familiar to you, even if it is a little more stripped down and a whole lot simpler.
What makes this game a little different from standard “click and launch” games is that timing is everything. There’s actually no meter or numerical indicator as to when you must click the mouse/keyboard key in order to achieve the best height/distance on the ball. Instead, you must watch the monkey as he repeatedly performs keep-ups with the ball, launching only between kicks when the ball has made its upwards journey and is about to hit his feet again for another keep-up: this is optimal time to strike the ball.
Monkey will also perform keep-ups of varying height and it seems that the higher the ball goes in the keep-up that precedes your actual strike, the more distance you can get on the ball. It’s all about timing and a little about trial and error as well. You’ve just got to get the feel for it.
That’s all there is to the gameplay since Totebo, the game's developer, intended for this to be a very simple game that is easy to pick up yet quite challenging to beat – there are of course a much more diverse and challenging range of monkey games available on the web. This brief has definitely been fulfilled, and the graphics aren’t half bad either. Far from your run-of-the-mill flash game graphics, Monkey Kick Off has a bit of style about it that goes a little beyond plain textures and the usual poorly-drawn models you often see in lesser flash games. It can also get quite addictive as well, so it may very well be the perfect filler or time killer for you to enjoy until the World Cup 2014 ends and the Premier League starts up again.