Tuesday, September 17

Mini Reviews: September 17th Edition [Nintendo Switch eShop]

Ritual: Sorcerer Angel - Filling in a somewhat unique and unusual space between casual and classic arcade style action we have Ritual, a game that feels like it would be well-suited to a twin-stick shooter but plays with less intensity. You’ll work your way through waves of enemies, looking out for power-ups and always being careful to not bite off more than you can chew. When there are enemies around with a higher level than you a single hit from them will result in death but with wily play you’ll be able to use your spells and power-ups to wear them down so they can be dispatched like anything else. There’s progression of a sort as you’ll become more effective but there’s no variation or choice in it, you’ll just continue to incrementally get more powerful at the base. Overall, it’s quite accessible and should be enjoyable to just about anyone and with so many more intense experiences on the platform it offers a more subdued but satisfying experience.

The Sinking City - There has been a real run of Lovecraftian horror titles coming to the Switch of late, no doubt making horror fans quite happy, and among them The Sinking City is the one doing it’s best to swing for the production values fences. Though there’s no doubt the game isn’t as impressive on the Switch as on other platforms for the most part it looks good, and certainly creepy, and performs well. Whether the story stands out against the competition will be a matter of taste but the environments, characters, and imagery certainly do a fair amount to establish a grim mood. Unfortunately elements like the combat and the somewhat iffy controls can drag down the enjoyment with frustration there’s a fair amount here to dig into for fans of the Cthulu and its ilk.

Golazo - The lack of raw numbers, let alone variety, in the sports game genre has no doubt been a letdown. If you’re a fan of soccer (or football, depending on where you hail from) but haven’t been willing to shell out the bucks for the likes of FIFA you now at least have another option, albeit a more stripped down one. Playing a bit more like classic sports titles with relative simplicity, and sometimes aggravatingly dense teammate AI, Golazo may not pull of a hat trick but it does a fair job at being accessible and fun. There’s no doubt it is more fun to play with others in local multiplayer, but if you’ve been starved for some footie fun it’s not a bad investment.

Deadly Premonition Origins - Never having played this series, but having heard stories, I wasn’t ready for the WTF factor to this game. With creepy characters, some of which I can’t tell are that way intentionally or just due to some strange characterization and model choices, this is a game where you’ll be scratching your head a bit over what in the world is going on. The good news is that if you’re looking for a creep factor, shooting zombies, and are fond of games from around the PS1/PS2 era inspired by the Resident Evil series you may find this to your liking. If, however, you’re looking for modern excitement, action, and play mechanics, you may be better off waiting on the new iteration of the series that has been confirmed to be coming to Switch later.

Newt One - While the Switch certainly has some noteworthy family-friendly titles that isn’t to say they’re available in great abundance. Particularly at less experienced side of the equation there simply aren’t a lot of kid-appropriate titles. Newt One, though a bit bland from a seasoned gamer perspective, keeps things pretty simple and accessible, playing as a very colorful and forgiving platformer. Your goal in each level is to be sure to bring color to everything, slowly moving and jumping along, sometimes making use of pretty basic power-ups to help you complete your missions. There’s a collect-a-thon element to it, just making you focus on being sure to hit everything as you go and be thorough, without a lot of pressure or challenge. While it won’t be a hit with experienced gamers its colorful and carefree nature should appeal to people who have just begun their gaming journey or who perhaps find most mainstream offerings too stressful.