Shadowbug – Nintendo Switch Review

If you are an avid follower of my reviews and like to read my many ramblings, you will notice that when it comes to 2D platformers/puzzlers, I am not their biggest fan. So it’s always interesting to see what the next platformer/puzzler brings in terms of uniqueness.

Developed by the 2 man team at Muro Studios in Finland, Shadowbug has you dashing and slicing your way through the levels.

The first thing that I am going to talk about it the movement and controls for the game, as I found this quite quirky to play with. There are several ways in which you can control your little mite, you can either use the touchscreen to have him move along, or you can use motion control, or just the stick on the left joy con, whichever works for you. I stuck with the traditional left joy con, although I did try by pressing on the screen and it was really weird.

Now, this is where it gets interesting, you can move, cool… Goal one in life achieved… *PING*….¬†Now, what else, how about jumping and getting about to the higher levels in the game… Ah yes, now how is this accomplished? Well, again, there are different ways in which you can achieve this, you can simply click on the enemy using the touchscreen and your little friend will go whizzing through the air and slice and dice them up, continual presses on the screen and you will get multiple enemies which when a nice string is put together you get to fly up through the levels, and sometimes can get quite nippy. This was the method that I favoured, you can also press the trigger button on the joy con and the mite will fly towards the enemies, which to me seemed to be an easier way of doing it, but I liked being able to press the bugs on the screen as though I was squishing them myself… Satisfying. There isn’t a tutorial for you to play as the controls are very basic and easy to get to grips with, the game simply tells you and done, you’re off on your merry way.

The visuals for the game are very good, I liked the dark and murky nature that the game portrayed as well as the level design, however, I did find that the further I went within the game, the more repetitive it got and I have to admit that there was only so much bug squishing that I could handle in one sitting. One thing I liked about the game was that it wasn’t your conventional 2d side scroller by going along the levels, working your way around, jumping up and moving stuff about the solve puzzles, with the jumping and slicing you could go through parts of the world to get to your enemies, you didn’t have to find a gap to jump through. There were points you couldn’t jump through, which was marked nicely in red for you to see, and they added a little challenge here and there when you were jumping, but when noticed it was easy to find your way around them.

The game is rather short, you have 36 levels to get through with 6 decent boss fights, and if you’re pretty decent at these type of games it won’t take you long to play this and could probably play this in handheld mode and beat it before your battery dies out. There is a bit of replayability about the game, each level has a time goal to it, so you can always go back and redo the levels in which you didn’t manage to beat the times on, and for me, I have to admit that it was a lot of levels that I would need to go back and redo to get all the stars.

I have to admit that this game is perfect for the Switch, the use of the touchscreen as well as the fact that this is perfect to play in short bursts while you’re on a bus/train/car journey (not driving obvs!) just to get that quick fix and play a few levels. The colours that have also been used with the silhouetted look of the game is brilliant and well used.