Hello gentle readers, and welcome to the Thanksgiving edition of the SwitchArcade Round-Up. Well, American Thanksgiving, at any rate. All I know is that my American friends are off work today. I would join them, but you know what? Lots of games came out today, and I need to tell you all about them. And perhaps you might need something to read while you hide from your family, I don’t know. There are a lot of new releases today, and that’s what we’re focusing on. Beyond that, we also have the lists of incoming and outgoing sales in case you haven’t had enough of those lately. Let’s chow down!
The Alto Collection ($9.99)
Snowman’s amazing Alto series comes to the Switch in this double-pack featuring both Alto’s Adventure and Alto’s Odyssey. That’s more than 120 levels of gorgeous skiing through snow-covered slopes, sandy dunes, and other locales. Everything from both games is included here, giving you plenty of content to enjoy for a reasonable price. These games got a ton of acclaim on mobile, and I suspect Switch owners will also have a lovely time with them. I’ll be doing a review of this one early next week if you need more details.
Root Double -Before Crime * After Days- Xtend Edition ($45.99)
The excellent visual novel makes its way to the Switch in its full Xtend Edition form. Set in a special city whose residents cannot leave, the story kicks off with an incident at a research laboratory. You’ll play through the events of story from the perspectives of different characters, slowly peeling away layers to reach the truth of the matter. The unique gameplay hook in this one sees you adjusting meters to determine your feelings about each character. Your intuition and trust will lead to one of many different endings, so you can’t just coast your way through and hope to get a good conclusion. Root Double has gotten a strong reception on other platforms, and I imagine it will be equally well-liked on Switch.
Picross S5 ($9.99)
Keep backing up the Picross truck, Jupiter. Bury me in puzzles. The interface and basic aesthetic haven’t changed at all from the last four, so let’s just talk numbers. 300 Picross and Mega Picross puzzles. 150 Clip Picross puzzles. 30 Color Picross puzzles. And as a cherry on top, 5 Extra puzzles. That’s a total of 485 puzzles to solve, a task that will take you hours upon hours. Pound for pound a great value, though I’m almost finished giving them passes for not including optional touch controls. All of the competition does it, Jupiter. Make it happen, please.
This is a rather enjoyable game where you play as a thief, looting the locals and fencing your goods for cash to furnish your own life of luxury. Okay, “luxury” may be an exaggeration, at least at the beginning. There’s a nice blend of gameplay elements on offer here, with stealth obviously being at the forefront. The only big knock I’ve got on the game is that it feels shorter than it should be. It’s a few hours long, and you’ll probably be well into the groove when it ends. For the price, I suppose I can’t ask for too much. Anyway, if you’re into breaking into your neighbor’s house to steal a roll of toilet paper for fun and profit, give Picklock a look.
Very short, but very cool. This one is already out on mobile and home computers, but the price difference is negligible and it plays more than fine on here. Just be aware that is about a half hour long. It is not something that is going to keep your gaming appetite fed for more than a quiet evening. But it is very good. The atmosphere is superb, the puzzles are interesting without being too taxing, and the sense of style is excellent. Well, I won’t tell you where to play it, but I will say that you should play it somewhere if you enjoy a good “experience” game.
Lots of surprises in today’s batch of new releases, and this is another one. QV is a colorful puzzle-platformer game about a girl and a talking penguin who need to save multiple dimensions by finding a way to reactivate a core that supposedly holds everything together. The puzzles are well-designed and the story and characters have a lot of charm. There aren’t a whole ton of good new isometric puzzle-platformers these days, so QV is quite welcome. It’s certainly aimed at a particular niche, but if you’re in that demographic, rest assured that the developers did this one right.
In Celebration of Violence ($12.99)
This game isn’t shy about its sources of inspiration. Its own developer readily cites the likes of Dark Souls and Binding of Isaac, so that should give you some idea of what you’re in for. It’s an action roguelite that prides itself on how challenging it is, one where every move should be carefully planned to avoid death. Of course, it does follow the usual style of modern games like this in that you can usually get a permanent upgrade of some sort or another after a run ends, helping you push a little further the next time. It’s a bit opaque in how everything works, so you’ll have to put some time in and be patient with it. If you’re really struggling, you can pull in a couple of friends to play as monsters and support you in local multiplayer. Quite well-made, and a real treat if you’re the sort that likes to bang your head against the wall until delicious Snickers bars come out.
Arcade Archives Green Beret ($7.99)
Sometimes known under the title Rush ‘N Attack (get it?), this 1985 Konami arcade game is a really nasty piece of work. It’s so hard, and yet you can’t help but keep coming back to it. You play as a very poorly-equipped soldier who has to knife his way through an entire base full of enemies. Pick up the occasional gun to make life easier until the ammo runs out, but never, ever stop moving forward. Hamster’s done its usual fine work with this one, and the fact that it’s both a noteworthy game and that it wasn’t included in any of Konami’s recent collections give this just a bit more appeal than the usual Arcade Archives Konami title.
This is a point-and-click style adventure game made by a pair of German students, and it touches on a lot of heavy topics in a very cathartic way. A father, daughter, and their pet pig embark once more on their annual journey to visit the girl’s mother. All up it lasts a couple of hours, with much of that time spent on developing the two main characters. Puzzles are quite simple, but the slow speed of the characters can make some of the navigation annoying. Come for the story and you won’t be disappointed. I think the price is quite fair for what you get, but if you’re looking for a challenging adventure game this isn’t going to be what you’re after. It looks like a storybook and that’s probably the best way to treat it.
Sky Mercenaries Redux ($15.00)
This is a revamped version of PolarityFlow’s 2014 PC shoot-em-up Sky Mercenaries. It’s a horizontal shooter with 32 stages set across 8 different worlds. You can upgrade your ships, making choices across different skill trees for each of the three pilots. The original game was, to be frank, quite lackluster. It looked okay but just wasn’t very fun to play. This Redux looks to be an improvement, but will it be improved enough to justify a fairly premium price for a game of this genre? You have to make a pretty strong case on a platform that offers tons of classics for under ten bucks. We’ll have to see if Sky Mercenaries Redux has the right stuff.
Lovekami -Divinity Stage- ($14.99)
Here’s another visual novel, and the premise for this one is… something. I guess Amaterasu (the Shinto sun goddess) decided that the goddesses in her charge needed some hands-on education with humans and sends them down to the mortal realm. Some time passes and I guess people just kind of get used to goddesses hanging around? Anyway, some of the goddesses end up in Akihabara and form their own idol group called L*SEVEN. They’re having auditions for the next generation members of the group and lots of candidates are vying for the positions. Uh, anyway, if that sounds like a story you want to get in on, here you go.
Maid of Sker ($24.99)
Maid of Sker is a first-person survival horror game steeped in Welsh folklore. All of the monsters use sound as their primary means of tracking you, so you have to skulk around and make use of a special gadget when stealth fails. It’s set in a hotel in an isolated location, and as you play you’ll discover the bloody past of the building and the family that owned it. A little on the short side, but the story is definitely intriguing. Walking around and learning about what happened in the past is cool and the highlight of the experience. Unfortunately, you’re going to have to deal with the monsters and they are quite insufferable. Very difficult to avoid, and they are pretty much everywhere. I can really only recommend this one to the very patient among you.
The Explorer of Night ($4.99)
This is a cute little platformer with some unfortunate mechanical issues. You play as a little cat thing trying to find a cure for a supposedly incurable disease. To that end, you’re running and jumping through dangerous stages, wrestling with challenges both intended and otherwise. The big problem I have with this one is in its collision detection. It feels like you’re constantly taking hits from things that didn’t touch you. I suppose there are worse platformers you could buy for five dollars on the eShop, but that’s less of a compliment than it may sound like. I do like the way it looks, at least.
(North American eShop, US Prices)
Ah, what a beautifully short list. But wow, there’s still some good stuff in here. Crashlands for a stupid low price! Idea Factory having a very rare sale on several of its games! ToeJam & Earl going for that 69% off discount! Nice. Not much in the outbox to get too fussed about, but Torchlight III is best enjoyed at a lower price so do grab that before it’s too late if you’re interested in it. Normally this is where I say that there will be a bunch of sales tomorrow, but realistically I’m not sure what noteworthy stuff is left. Guess we’ll see.
Select New Games on Sale
Levelhead ($14.99 from $19.99 until 11/30)
Crashlands ($3.74 from $14.99 until 11/30)
Fairy Fencer F: ADF ($8.99 from $29.99 until 12/1)
Moero Chronicle Hyper ($9.99 from $19.99 until 12/1)
Super Neptunia RPG ($19.99 from $39.99 until 12/1)
Mary Skelter 2 ($19.99 from $39.99 until 12/1)
Arc of Alchemist ($11.99 from $39.99 until 12/1)
Billion Road ($20.09 from $29.99 until 12/1)
Istanbul: Digital ($9.99 from $19.99 until 12/1)
Charterstone: Digital ($18.74 from $24.99 until 12/1)
Eight-Minute Empire: Complete ($7.49 from $14.99 until 12/1)
Save Your Nuts ($7.49 from $14.99 until 12/1)
Lucah: Born of a Dream ($5.99 from $14.99 until 12/2)
Baila Latino ($7.99 from $9.99 until 12/3)
ToeJam & Earl: BitG! ($4.64 from $14.99 until 12/4)
I, AI ($7.99 from $9.99 until 12/9)
Jigsaw Fun: Piece It Together! ($9.99 from $14.99 until 12/14)
Steel Rain ($8.99 from $14.99 until 12/15)
Cyber Complex ($8.99 from $14.99 until 12/15)
Sales Ending Tomorrow, Friday, November 27th
4×4 Dirt Track ($5.99 from $11.99 until 11/27)
7th Sector ($13.99 from $19.99 until 11/27)
Active Neurons: Puzzle ($3.49 from $4.99 until 11/27)
Aircraft Evolution ($6.99 from $9.99 until 11/27)
Apparition ($7.99 from $9.99 until 11/27)
Breeder Homegrown: DC ($3.49 from $4.99 until 11/27)
City Bus Driving Simulator ($5.99 from $11.99 until 11/27)
Close to the Sun ($13.74 from $24.99 until 11/27)
Dungeon Warfare ($2.49 from $9.99 until 11/27)
Escape From Tethys ($6.99 from $9.99 until 11/27)
Mask of Mists ($10.49 from $14.99 until 11/27)
Music Racer ($4.89 from $6.99 until 11/27)
Need a Packet? ($4.89 from $6.99 until 11/27)
Norman’s Great Illusion ($3.49 from $4.99 until 11/27)
Pantsu Hunter ($9.09 from $12.99 until 11/27)
Shadow Bug ($5.39 from $8.99 until 11/27)
Steam Tactics ($6.99 from $9.99 until 11/27)
Tiny Troopers Joint Ops XL ($3.50 from $12.99 until 11/27)
Torchlight III ($23.99 from $39.99 until 11/27)
Zombie’s Cool ($2.99 from $3.99 until 11/27)
That’s all for today, friends. After the last couple of days, I feel like I’m getting off light here. But I’ll take it. I hope you all enjoy your meal, no matter how big or small it may be. Especially if it’s Thanksgiving, but even if it’s just a normal day for you, enjoy that food. I’ll be back tomorrow with the remaining new releases for the week, along with any sales that appear. Have a great Thursday, and as always, thanks for reading!