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Ready, Steady, Ship! Indie Video Game Review

Ready, Steady, Ship! Indie Video Game Review

One of, if not my favorite video game genre are cooperative games. Ever since the release of games like Overcooked, I have absolutely loved this genre. Growing up my brother and I loved playing games together. Recently indie game studios have really shown how good cooperative games can be. Whenever I see a new game from this genre come out, I am really intrigued to check it out. When I first saw Ready, Steady, Ship! I immediately knew I wanted to try it out. The game combined cooperative games that I love with another of my favorite genres, automation games. The idea of setting one of these types of games in a factory was really intriguing as well. Ready, Steady, Ship! is one of the most intriguing and fun cooperative games that I have played in quite some time, that unfortunately can get a little frustrating at times. 

In Ready, Steady, Ship! you play as the newest employees at a factory. Your job at the factory is pretty simple. Deliver boxes to their intended destination. On the surface this might seem very simple and straightforward. Unfortunately the company you work for is quite strange as they find some of the most unconventional ways of running their factories. Your goal is to deliver all of the packages as quickly as you can.

Ready, Steady, Ship! is an interesting game because it actually blends quite a few different mechanics together.

The core of the game is built around co-op mechanics. The game does have a single player mode (more on this later), but it is built around playing with another player. The objective of each level is to work with your teammate in order to transport enough boxes to the right exit location. In a decent amount of the levels you could theoretically do this by just picking up the boxes and running them to their destination. That would take way too long though, and would be kind of boring.

Instead Ready, Steady, Ship! gives you a number of tools to help you with your task. Your main tool in the game is using various conveyor belts to move the boxes to their destination. Once a box is placed on a conveyor belt, it will move in the direction shown on the conveyor belt arrows. In the first couple of levels you can create a very simple conveyor belt that takes the boxes to their final destination. Eventually you have to add in little machines that fold the boxes, add packing peanuts, etc. To use these machines you just press a simple button to perform the required action.

Simple conveyor systems go away quickly though as whoever designed the factory floors had no idea what they were doing. You start to acquire other types of conveyor pieces that require a more hands-on approach. Some conveyor pieces break if you don’t regularly repair them. Some launch or blow boxes into the air to move them across gaps. You even have to use forklifts and cranes to move boxes and other materials around the stages.

While the co-op gameplay is the most obvious element of the game, there is actually a really interesting puzzle/automation element as well. I have never played a game in this genre before that felt like as much of a puzzle. The early levels it is really obvious what you need to do. Things get more complicated rather quickly. While you could manually deliver the boxes, it is much more efficient and fun to figure out how you need to setup the factory in order to get the boxes where they need to go. Some of these can be out of the box solutions, where the most obvious solution is not the correct one. The game even gives you quite a bit of leeway to solve some of the puzzles. We ended up finding some shortcuts to completing some tasks that likely weren’t intended.

I have played a lot of games in this co-op genre, and while Ready, Steady, Ship! shares a lot in common with them; it is also one of the most original games that I have played in the genre in a very long time. The game relies on the core concept of having to work well with your teammate, but many of the other mechanics are quite different. This is actually pretty refreshing. A lot of these types of co-op games, while still really fun, kind of feel the same. Ready, Steady, Ship! truly felt like a different experience which was refreshing.

I think a lot of this has to deal with the number of mechanics present in the game. The game does a fantastic job adding in a new wrinkle every few levels to keep things fresh. One level you will be assembling a conveyor belt, and the next you will driving a forklift likely in a pretty reckless manner. The game does a really good job of keeping things fresh throughout all of its levels.

Outside of its refreshing take on the genre, I really enjoyed Ready, Steady, Ship! because it succeeds at what every successful game in this genre needs. It is simply really fun to play with another player. While each player needs to focus on their own tasks, you need to work well together if you want a chance at doing well in the levels. Some levels require you to have good teamwork to even complete the task at hand. For example in several levels a player has to pick up the other player with a forklift and then carry them to another part of the level.. Like any good game in this genre, it works because it is fun trying to complete the task with another player.

Technically you can play Ready, Steady, Ship! by yourself. In fact the single player levels actually differ from the two player levels. Most of them have a similar task, but tweaked so it works with one player. Other levels are completely different. I was genuinely surprised that it appears like a lot of work was put into the single player levels. Ready, Steady, Ship! is a better co-op game than a solo experience. It is just the type of game that is more enjoyable with other players. That said, the game is still fun by yourself and it is worth checking out the solo levels as they differ enough that they are worth playing after you complete the co-op campaign.

With the game being built around playing with another player, I appreciate that the gameplay is pretty straightforward for the most part. The controls are simple. The game does a good job explaining each new mechanic. This helps the game succeed as you are more focused on completing the job rather than dealing with complicated controls. Some mechanics do take some time to get used to. The forklift and cranes are not the most straightforward when you first start using them. Once you get a handle on them though, they are pretty easy to control.

As for Ready, Steady, Ship!’s length it will depend on the players and whether you care about getting a green time and three stars on each level. The game has 30 levels and each level has three different sections to it. For the earlier levels to get the green time you have about 5-6 minutes. For the later levels the best time is around ten minutes or so. If you just want to play each level once and call it a day, I would guess you could finish the game in a few hours. If you want to 100% complete everything though, I think you could easily get 10-15 hours out of the game. When you have completed the co-op campaign, I think it is worth going back and checking out the single player levels as well.

For the most part Ready, Steady, Ship! is everything I would want from a co-op game. The gameplay is fun and unique. It is really fun playing with another player. The controls are straightforward making it easy to pick up and play. It is quite original for the genre. If I stopped my review at this point, I would say that it is easily one of the best co-op games that I have played recently. It is still a good game, but there are two issues that do hurt the game at times.

While Ready, Steady, Ship! is a really fun game, it can be pretty frustrating at times. I attribute a lot of this to the game’s physics. A lot of these co-op games have none to very few physics involved in the actual gameplay. That isn’t the case for Ready, Steady, Ship!. The game actually relies on physics quite a bit. Unfortunately they can be hit or miss at times. Boxes twist and turn on the conveyor belts. This leads to them semi-regularly getting stuck or falling off the belts.

To fix these situations you have to pick up the boxes and put them back on the belt. This could ruin your chances of getting three stars or completing a level at the fastest time. Things get worse when the launching and fan mechanics are introduced. Sometimes these mechanics work consistently. Other times you can’t predict how they will react. If a box enters one of these sections at the wrong angle, it very likely won’t be launched correctly. You will then be forced to reset the box to an earlier section on your conveyor system.

There just isn’t much consistency with the physics at times. You could expect them to work one way, and then a box flies unexpectedly into the air or falls off the conveyor belt. This applies to some of the things you have to move with the forklifts as well. The physics don’t ruin the game. It is still quite fun. This gets a little frustrating at times though. You will have to restart levels if you are trying for the max stars or the best time on a level solely due to how the box physics work. If you don’t really care about getting three stars or reaching the best times, this won’t be much of an issue. If you want to get the best time and all of the stars though, you will be forced to restart levels due to the boxes not behaving how you think they should.

Because of the physics, you likely won’t be able to three star all of the stages as well as get the green time at the same time. Most of the levels you could still complete both in time. Some of these levels we attempted many times to try and get the green time and the max number of stars. We play a lot of games from this genre, and we just never could complete both in one attempt.

The good news is that you don’t have to. You can three star each section of a level in one attempt, and then go for the green time in another attempt. You will likely be forced to do this for some of the levels. The game also wisely lets you restart any section of a level without having to redo the previous sections. This can be helpful in getting the three stars since you can just restart your current section if you mess up.

While the physics are the game’s biggest issue, I have some complaints with the controls as well. Overall the controls work pretty well. There are some times though where they don’t work as you would expect them to. This can be frustrating as you waste quite a bit of time slightly adjusting the position of your character to finally interact with the object that you have wanted to use for the previous couple of attempts. You eventually adjust to controlling the forklift and crane, but they will sometimes act in unusual ways which will mess you up. There were a couple of minor bugs when we played the game that lead to players getting stuck in the environment or falling through the floor.

At this time I want to say that this review is based on a pre-release version of the game. Therefore some of these issues may have already been fixed for the final version of the game. I hope these issues get resolved pretty quickly, as they do hold back an otherwise fantastic game. In fact if these issues are fixed I could easily see adding at least a half to a full star to my final rating for the game.

For the most part I really enjoyed Ready, Steady, Ship!. As a big fan of co-op games, it does pretty much everything you would expect from a good game from the genre. The game is pretty easy and accessible to play. It is really fun playing with another player. The single player levels are even better than I expected. Where Ready, Steady, Ship! differs from a lot of games in the genre is that it is actually pretty unique. The concept of working in a factory works well, and the game regularly introduces new mechanics to keep things fresh. In a lot of ways Ready, Steady, Ship! is one of the best co-op games that I have played in quite some time.

That is why it is unfortunate that the game does have a few issues at this moment. The biggest is that it can be pretty frustrating at times. A lot of this is due to the physics acting wonky at times. You could do everything right and then one of the boxes or other objects don’t work how you would expect them to. On top of that the controls while usually pretty good, occasionally don’t work the greatest. There are some bugs here and there as well. These frustrations are disappointing as I could easily see giving the game at least another half star and maybe even another full star if they were fixed. Hopefully a future update fixes them and then I can confidently say that Ready, Steady, Ship! is one of the best co-op games that I have played recently.

Nevertheless I really enjoyed Ready, Steady, Ship! and would recommend it to people who like co-op games, and are intrigued by the premise.

Ready, Steady, Ship!

Release Date: April 19th, 2024 | Systems: PC, Playstation 4/5, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One/Series S|X

Developer: JOLLYBITS Games | Publisher: Untold Tales | ESRB Rating: Everyone

Genres: Automation, Co-Op, Puzzle

Official Website:


  • A truly unique and original take on the co-op genre.
  • Does a good job with all of the elements that make for a good co-op game.


  • The physics can be frustrating at times when they don’t act like you would expect.
  • The controls while usually pretty good, have issues at times.

Rating: 3.5/5

Recommendation: For fans of co-op games that are intrigued by the game’s premise.

Where to Purchase: Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4/5, Steam

We at Geeky Hobbies would like to thank JOLLYBITS Games and Untold Tales for the review copy of Ready, Steady, Ship! used for this review. Other than receiving a free copy of the game to review, we at Geeky Hobbies received no other compensation for this review. Receiving the review copy for free had no impact on the content of this review or the final score.