franky1.jpg Franky the Asswalker: Secret of Zakruel is just about as ridiculous as it sounds. Due to the unfortunate side effects of a teleportation jaunt, Franky indeed walks on his ass. He gets around fine though, and his constantly sunny disposition is the heart of the game. Guide Franky as he explores the magical Tubo World, seeking adventure and meeting all kinds of interesting inhabitants. Make friends with lulambas, hear Fartogen sing, buy a pontimato from Kazbec (it's like a tomato, but with a surprise inside)--and that's just in Tim-tom Village! Once you learn of the mystery of the secret of the Magic Zakruel, your adventure really begins.

Other than the asswalking, the game is essentially a family-friendly adventure, but it's trippy and off-kilter enough to see that it's obviously aimed at adults with childish minds. Music helps the game come alive. The soundtrack of your journey has everything from hardcore to reggae, from opera to what sounds like the Chipmunks on acid. The game's hand-drawn art is somewhere between Keita Takahashi (Katamari Damacy) and Pendleton Ward (Adventure Time), with a dash of the Pee-Wee Herman Show. There is a general atmosphere of whimsy and kitschy sincerity that makes Franky the Asswalker utterly endearing to those of us who enjoy it when the cute meets the bizarre.

Controls are simple: Arrow keys to move and space for actions, such as talking to people and opening doors. Press X to access your inventory and, if you want, the "End game" command. You can save your game at the sleeping blue lulambas. The puzzles aren't terribly challenging, and you can skip the occasional minigame if it keeps you from progressing. But playing Franky isn't about skill or logic; it's about exercising your brain in other ways. See the sights, talk to the locals, and try not to grin through the whole thing. One of my favorite parts of it was collecting encyclopedia pages to learn more about Tubo World. Franky is a giddy, cartoony, magical mystery tour of a strange and adorable land, and I recommend that you make the trip.

Created by Kujaku and translated from the original Russian to English by Monti, Franky the Asswalker is available to download for free for Windows from RPGMaker.net.