Recently, Squanch Games’ High on Life was released, making ripples throughout the gaming community for its disruptive humour and distinctive first-person shooter gameplay. Squanch’s creation is pretty unique; it blends Rick and Morty-style comedy with relatively open-ended shooting, as well as a cast of guns that have distinct personalities and chatter away as you’re firing them.
As such, finding games that are exactly like High on Life is pretty hard, but there are plenty of titles out there similar to it, some of which it was arguably directly influenced by. Here are 12 games similar to High on Life!
1. Oddworld: Stranger’s Wrath HD
Arguably the game with which High on Life shares the most DNA is the rather strange Oddworld: Stranger’s Wrath, a shooter released back in 2005 (but which you can also get on modern platforms). Stranger’s weaponry is alive, just like the player character’s in High on Life, although Stranger’s Wrath takes an altogether more surrealist approach in comparison to High on Life’s nihilism.
2. Metroid Prime Remastered
While High on Life doesn’t have much in common with Metroid Prime when it comes to atmosphere and tone, the way in which you unlock new weapons and powers that grant you extra traversal powers is markedly reminiscent of Samus’ inaugural 3D outing. If you want more open-ended 3D FPS exploration and you don’t mind a more serious tone, then Metroid Prime is essential.
3. Trover Saves the Universe
Featuring Squanch’s signature mix of off-kilter humour and wacky presentation, Trover Saves the Universe is an action-adventure game that will look pretty familiar if you’ve played High on Life. It has Squanch’s colourful, high-octane style shot through it, although this one is a slightly more sedate affair than High on Life’s frenetic shooting. Still, it’ll appeal if you like High on Life for the comedy.
4. The Halo series
If the part of High on Life that appeals to you is exploring alien planets, using alien weaponry, and engaging in freeform pitched shooter battles, then Halo is a series you’ll almost certainly want to check out. Bungie (and later 343 Industries) provides an epic and far-reaching story that takes protagonist Master Chief to the furthest reaches of the universe, and there’s plenty of varied action to enjoy.
5. The Stanley Parable
High on Life is constantly making jokes about its own status as a video game. For some, that might be a little grating, but if you like this element of the game, you should check out The Stanley Parable. It’s much less action-packed than High on Life, but it features similar commentary about the actions you take throughout the game, and the narrator is wonderfully smug and self-aggrandising, too.
6. Psychonauts and Psychonauts 2
Tim Schafer is a developer who has always prized humour and strong writing as one of his biggest passions, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that both Psychonauts and Psychonauts 2 are excellent, hilarious platformers. They have High on Life’s spirit of open-ended exploration, although they’re more conventional 3D platformer-style games rather than first-person shooters.
7. Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart
High on Life’s madcap visual sensibility and colourful alien worlds can be traced back in part to Insomniac Games’ classic series Ratchet and Clank. Rift Apart has all of the alien weaponry, crazy setpieces, and comedic dialogue you’ve come to expect from the franchise, but with an unexpectedly emotional dimension that makes it a little more family-friendly than High on Life’s unapologetically adult humour.
8. South Park: The Stick of Truth and The Fractured But Whole
Tee hee hee. Snigger-worthy title aside, both of Ubisoft’s South Park RPGs are worth playing if the part of High on Life that appeals to you the most is its ribald humour. These Paper Mario-inspired adventures are irreverent riffs on gaming, as well as politics and all of South Park’s other usual targets. If you love the show, then you’ve probably already played these, but if you haven’t, you should definitely check them out.
9. Sunset Overdrive
The comedy in Sunset Overdrive has proven divisive, which is a shame, because the game is a hugely enjoyable open-world adventure. Created by Ratchet and Clank studio Insomniac Games, Sunset Overdrive takes place in a crazy pop-punk world overrun by a poisonous energy drink. Its humour is unabashedly puerile and self-referential, but the action, which involves taking down hordes of mutants while grinding rails around the city, is great fun.
10. The Borderlands series
We have the Borderlands series to thank, at least in part, for the current proliferation of looter-shooter and gear-grinder games, but if you like this style, then it’s worth checking out where it all “began” (for this current wave, at least). Borderlands marries irreverent humour with MMORPG-style looting and questing, and with a range of exotic guns available, you’re not likely to get bored (erlands).
11. Portal 2
On the surface, Portal 2 doesn’t look a whole lot like High on Life, but just like Squanch’s game, this is a first-person adventure with comedy running through its veins. Admittedly, Portal 2’s humour is more family-friendly and less overtly adult than High on Life, but hey – if you haven’t already played Portal 2, then this will give you a great excuse to experience one of the best puzzle games of all time.
12. Destroy All Humans! 2 – Reprobed
Did you play through High on Life and find yourself wishing that you could experience the game from the point of view of the aliens? If so, then Destroy All Humans! 2 – Reprobed will appeal (as will the remake of the original Destroy All Humans!, which is well worth seeking out). You play as Crypto, an alien who must invade Earth and lay waste to it using his UFO and a series of zany weapons and tools.