Mixed or average reviews - based on 23 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 23
  2. Negative: 2 out of 23
  1. Jun 24, 2013
    A powerful narrative, imaginative puzzles, and strong presentation combine in Papo & Yo to result in one of this year's best gaming experiences. The emotional journey of Quico and Monster that comprises Papo & Yo leaves a long-lasting impression well after its conclusion.
  2. PC Master (Greece)
    Jun 5, 2013
    Visualizing the unjust battle of a boy with the demons of child abuse, Papo & Yo tells a warm, but tough story of growing up, while carefully dodging cheesy clichés. [June 2013]
  3. May 9, 2013
    Quotation forthcoming.
  4. May 2, 2013
    Vander Caballero's puzzle-platformer isn't important because of its puzzles or its platforms – it's important because of what it is outside of that, an autobiographical fable that goes uncomfortably deep into a cycle of abuse and addiction and its long-reaching effects on a naive young boy.
  5. May 10, 2013
    It's an average game because the puzzles are too simplistic despite their stylish appearance, and there's nothing that compels you to repeat the journey. As a story, however, the title succeeds in giving you an amazing journey as it deals in a subject matter that few games ever attempt.
  6. May 9, 2013
    Quotation forthcoming.
  7. Apr 25, 2013
    While it can’t compare to living with an abusive parent, you do get an insight into what it’s like, and you get to experience a sliver of the emotions the creator went through. And that’s the unique strength games have. You understand those emotions a little better by feeling them yourself.
  8. Apr 17, 2013
    While the trivial difficulty is certainly a glaring flaw of the game, the overall experience of Papo & Yo is a memorable one; touching upon some themes that will hit close to home to many and giving everyone else in between something to think about long after the credits have rolled.
  9. Apr 22, 2013
    Papo & Yo is an original and unique game. It's not perfect but it's also imaginative and engrossing.
  10. Apr 22, 2013
    Papo & Yo should be commended and will be remembered for wearing its heart on its sleeve.
  11. Apr 30, 2013
    Papo & Yo is a unique game. It handles its themes extremely well, and the world is simply amazing to behold. Though the game is not without its faults, chief among them a lack of difficulty and challenge, Papo & Yo should be played at least once. Trust me, the journey will be quite worth it.
  12. Apr 22, 2013
    Papo & Yo deals in some fundamental truths about abuse, addiction, and maturity, and I certainly didn’t expect it. It may be short and easy, but it uses games to convey a psychological message that would be otherwise impossible without interaction.
  13. Apr 18, 2013
    The gameplay of Papo & Yo won't grab you, but its imaginative portrayal of a young boy's struggles makes it a worthwhile and special experience.
  14. May 3, 2013
    Overall, Papo & Yo is an interesting game — especially visually — and it’s also a memorable game, but I don’t know that I’d call it a good game. The puzzles are largely easy, the story elements are largely missing, and the playing time isn’t large at all. Still, Papo & Yo is only priced at $15, so it might be worthwhile to pick up just to try something different.
  15. Aug 28, 2013
    When you look at it it's a captivating tour along the foreign culture and child's phantasy that is in fact a sanctuary against real demons lurking behind three-dimensional puzzles. Playful and at the same time mature game experience, whose concept works only halfway through. But when it works, it pushes your emotions forward.
  16. PC Gamer UK
    Jul 24, 2013
    Achingly beautiful. [Aug 2013, p.85]
  17. May 14, 2013
    If you'd only look at the puzzles, Papo & Yo would be an average game. Maybe even below average. But it's the compelling story about a child that makes this game a success that's worth your time.
  18. May 2, 2013
    Papo & Yo is about growing into a person who can escape an abusive family situation, and that’s a theme powerful enough to overwhelm any number of small problems, if pulled off properly. The best parts of the game are when this theme is integrated directly into the action, whether that’s running from an enraged Monster or engaging in escapist fantasy with the platforming and landscape manipulation.
  19. Apr 18, 2013
    Your brain won’t be incredibly taxed by the puzzles...but the game moves at the right pace considering that the plot is what’s most important here.
  20. Aug 12, 2013
    Papo & Yo leaves me conflicted. On the one hand, I couldn’t be happier that Vander Caballero turned to video games as his means for self-expression. Unfortunately, the uninspired, frustrating gameplay adds nothing to the heartbreaking story contained therein.
  21. Apr 29, 2013
    It's a fairly short title, though, lasting only a few hours, and despite the parts surrounding the narrative being underwhelming, the story itself is impressively affecting and worth experiencing.
  22. Apr 18, 2013
    The on-paper premise of a traumatic childhood brought to life as a playable short story is brilliant, but the wounded execution can’t quite sell the emotional expression.
  23. Jul 23, 2013
    Cold, formulaic gameplay sucks all the enjoyment from this game’s amazing, incredibly moving story.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 145 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 86 out of 145
  2. Negative: 10 out of 145
  1. Apr 22, 2013
    Papo & Yo is an extremely personal work like only few others in the industry. It is a clear message to the industry: games can be more thanPapo & Yo is an extremely personal work like only few others in the industry. It is a clear message to the industry: games can be more than space marines. Games can be more, games can be autobiographical using game mechanics as a tool for addressing a message. A beautiful game. Full Review »
  2. Aug 2, 2013
    Papo & Yo is an interesting if not exceptional experience. And this is the crux of it; someone had a story to tell and an experience toPapo & Yo is an interesting if not exceptional experience. And this is the crux of it; someone had a story to tell and an experience to relate.

    If you play this game as a game particularly if you expect a challenging puzzle game you're going to be disappointed. Whereas if you liked games like Dear Esther then Papo & Yo will probably be right up your alley.

    The graphics are functional but scarcely stress the Unreal Engine. The sound is a bit lackluster and the puzzles themselves are not logical (though neither are they difficult). Basically push a white glowy thing which will enable you to push another white glowy thing or lead the monster to a white glowy thing.

    You will not be taxed by this and if you find yourself stuck then it's probably because you haven't run to the right area yet. I don't really have a problem with this as it allows the story to flow without frustration.

    Papa & Yo is a pretty solid game; I've had only two technical issues: once it's locked up my PC entirely requiring a reboot and then I've gotten stuck in a wall on moving block. I'd rate it a pretty solid 65/100 but was tempted to give it a 0. A voter block looks to be artificially inflating the user scores; at the time of writing only 7 of the 17 user reviews really looked legitimate.

    Finally is it worth your money? Yes I think so. Not all game can or should be massive AAA titles. Papo & Yo has it's niche and it fills it.
    Full Review »
  3. May 2, 2013
    This is a branch that is severely neglected by designers nowadays. Designers blinded by childhood fantasies, sales and "having fun". Games canThis is a branch that is severely neglected by designers nowadays. Designers blinded by childhood fantasies, sales and "having fun". Games can be much more, as movies can heal and teach, games can be an even better tool at this, involving you even more, and flowing and shaping like water Full Review »