Kukoos: Lost Pets – Review
Follow Genre: Platformer
Developer: Petit Fabrik
Publisher: Modus Games
Platform: Switch, PC, PS4
Tested on: Switch

Kukoos: Lost Pets – Review

Site Score
Good: Accessible and kid-friendly
Bad: Various small issues and glitches detract from the overall experience
User Score
(1 votes)
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Rating: 5.0/10 (1 vote cast)

After spending a year in Steam Early Access, developer Petit Fabrik’s platforming title Kukoos: Lost Pets debuted its full version last month. The full version of the game added a slew of new content and a multiplayer mode, and didn’t release just on PC but simultaneously on Switch and PS4 as well. The family-friendly presentation and inclusion of couch co-op multiplayer make Lost Pets seem like a perfect fit on the Switch in particular, perhaps more so than on the other two platforms. If you’re a parent in a household where your young’uns just unwrapped a brand new Switch over the holidays, this might be a title that piques your interest, but can the game capitalize on its kid-friendly appearance and deliver good gameplay as well?


Before we were introduced to this game, we were unfamiliar with the Kukoos themselves. Based on how Lost Pets presented itself, we expected this to be a licensed game based on a kids’ TV show we had never heard of. The opening cutscene, which introduces us to the Kukoos’ world, certainly resembles the intro to such a show, but as it turned out, we’re dealing with an original IP here. In an undefined future, the Earth has become entirely flooded, with the exception of a tiny island, which is where the Kukoos and their pets live in a giant tree. Lost Pets’ story starts with the opening ceremony for Pet Day, an annual contest where the Kukoos’ beloved pets and their owners team up to compete in a series of games to determine who the best pet is. The festivities are broken up when the villainous Great Kooktopus tricks the Kukoos into giving their pets special collars that in theory would enhance their abilities. In reality, these collars make the critters go rogue and run away. This all ties into the Great Kooktopus’ plan of taking over the Island, ensuring he rules the entirety of Earth rather than just 99.76% of it. Of course, it’s now up to the four featured Kukoos, named K, Kika, Kallerina, and Krumpy, to track down the runaway pets and stop the Great Kooktopus’ nefarious scheme.


If anything makes Lost Pets stand out, it is its strong art direction. We mentioned it when talking about the story, but the game exudes the atmosphere of a cartoon series. This is especially true during the cutscenes, and there are quite a few of them, even though Lost Pets is a relatively short game. The ape-like Kukoos are reminiscent of a cross between the Smurfs and the Fall Guys. We couldn’t shake off the impression that Lost Pets was designed as a starting point for a veritable Kukoos franchise, with a whole slew of games featuring these little creatures. There are plenty of different Kukoo designs shown during crowd scenes, ranging from a Viking to a pastry chef and everything in between. It’s surprising that there wasn’t a range of unlockable cosmetics, especially since protagonist K is a bit of a blank slate in terms of Kukoo design. What we did notice was that the colors in the game were less saturated than we expected. Additionally, despite the relatively simplistic visuals, the game is apparently more demanding on whatever hardware you’re running it on than you’d expect. In-game textures often looked soft, blurry, or muddy, although this might be specific to the Switch version of the game and your mileage may vary when playing on PC or PlayStation. What was baffling was that we noticed that our Switch sometimes struggled to keep up with the frame rate during pre-rendered cutscenes, which made us think that these issues have to do with poor optimization and that they might be resolved in the future.


While the music and sound effects definitely do what they need to do, they don’t really stand out or are particularly memorable. What defines Lost Pets’ soundscape is that it features full voice acting during cutscenes. It is clear that the voice cast is not made up of native English speakers. The Kukoos sometimes pronounce words in an odd way or have a distinctly foreign accent. This does not really detract from the overall presentation because it happens consistently with the different characters. However, we did notice that voice lines didn’t always flow very naturally, and there were awkward pauses in between sentences. We also ran into an odd audio sync glitch, after we had paused the game for a few minutes. When we returned, there was a delay of roughly ten seconds between the audio and what happened on screen.


There are a plethora of kid-friendly platformers available on the Switch, from Nintendo’s own Super Mario series to titles like Ayo the Clown and Stitchy in Tooki Trouble. Lost Pets is yet another contender in this genre. If a game wants to be successful in a saturated market, it needs a good unique selling point that allows it to stand out. Lost Pets’ gameplay ticks a lot of the boxes of what people have come to expect in platforming games, but it also attempts to offer a unique gameplay element in the form of Pet Powers. These allow you to harness the unique abilities of each pet to overcome obstacles, whether it’s flying across small gaps or lighting up dark caves. It’s an interesting gimmick and it allows for a wide variety of gameplay without feeling overwhelming. The game doesn’t limit itself to a specific style of platforming either, offering a mix of 2D and 3D levels, although the appeal of the 3D-style levels is diminished somewhat by having a fixed camera rather than one you control yourself.

Even so, Lost Pets’ platforming action is solid, if a little straightforward. The game is targeted towards a younger audience, so it’s definitely not the most challenging platformer out there, and seasoned gamers can probably complete the game in around three hours. The longevity can be stretched by attempting to find the collectible flowers, four of which are hidden in each level. Additional side-goals are available for each level as well, and these come in the form of a specific number of coins to collect and a specific number of enemies to defeat. Given the family-friendly nature of Lost Pets, this is a great game to play together with a younger buddy for whom the challenges the game throws up are still a bit daunting. The game supports co-op multiplayer with up to four players, so it definitely has the potential to be a hit with the family crowd. Or at least, it would be if it didn’t suffer from several issues that detract from the overall experience.

We already mentioned the taxing visual performance, but there are other elements that prevent Lost Pets from being a worry-free experience. Early on, we encountered a glitch that prevented us from using Pet Powers, for example, and we were unable to progress. The game kept asking us to “Press A repeatedly” in order to fly, but pressing A did absolutely nothing. It only happened once, and when we restarted the level, the issue was gone, but it’s something that’s a lot less forgivable when keeping the target audience in mind. Add to this that the game suffers from disproportionately lengthy load times and you’ve got a title that we suggest holding out on until it receives a performance patch or two. It’s a shame too, because Lost Pets definitely has a lot of potential to become a family favorite, but the currently present rough edges are too prominent to ignore.


As the starting point for a potential Kukoos franchise, Lost Pets gets a lot right in setting up a colorful and characterful world that will definitely appeal to the younger crowd. The game does leave some things to be desired when it comes to execution, however, with performance issues and glitches that are difficult to overlook. In its current state, Lost Pets is difficult to recommend, but with a couple of patches down the line, this is a game that has everything to be a hit with its intended audience.

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Rating: 5.0/10 (1 vote cast)
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Kukoos: Lost Pets - Review, 5.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating

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