Mighty Switch Force! 2 – Nintendo 3DS
Punting babies to safety since 2013!
Reviewed by Gunsavior
It’s hard to imagine a time when Way Forward Technologies wasn’t the darling of the hardcore gaming industry. Since producing the cult hit Shantae in 2001, they’ve been the champion of gamers craving intelligent and complex 2D platformers with games like Contra 4, Aliens: Infestation and DuckTales to cement their position. With Mighty Switch Force! 2, the team at Way Forward continues its exceptional run as a truly great not-quite-indie developer, even if they just slapped a different occupation onto the original game’s mechanics.
You play as Patricia Wagon, a woman on a mission to save other beautiful women and punt newborn babies to safety. Ms. Wagon has changed careers since the first game, trading in her police badge for a firefighter’s helmet. It’s her mission to save the reformed members of the hooligan sisters by solving the sometimes devious switch puzzles throughout sixteen flame-engulfed levels. As is usually the case with puzzle platformers, the gameplay and the mechanics are as simple as they are versatile.
In typical Way Forward fashion, the game looks and handles like a dream. The graphics are vibrant and the controls are crisp and responsive. The animation and physics lend just the right amount of weight to the action and even the physics of the water gun, while strange at first, quickly becomes second nature. All this is punctuated by an upbeat soundtrack that harkens back to the halcyon days of 16-bit gaming.
The game’s mechanics are simple: you use the hose to put out fires and a button to activate switches. The streamlined gameplay allowed the developers to put their creatively challenging players to use those abilities within the levels. Though the game can be devious at times, you’ll rarely find yourself the victim of a cheap death. The developers were smart enough to avoid that nonsense.
If the game has a knock against it, it’s the short length. Even a novice player can finish it in about four hours while advanced players could polish off the campaign in less than an hour. Aside from going back to find the newborn baby in each level (and punting it to safety), there really isn’t much to go back to.
GET TO DA CHOPPA!!
It’s hard to complain too much about a six dollar game not having much replay value, but this game was clearly meant to be a brisk experience rather than an epic journey. When viewed as a companion to the first game, it wouldn’t be completely out of line to consider them two halves of a whole game. They’re just different enough to provide a varied gameplay experience with the constant being the switch capabilities. Try playing them back to back to get a more substantial experience.
Way Forward has another solid platformer on their hands and the door is wide open for a part 3 (will Patricia become a paramedic or an animal control agent for the next game?). At a price point of roughly six dollars apiece, it may be best to pop for both this and the original for a solid gameplay experience. Even on its own, Mighty Switch Force! 2 is platforming bliss and perfectly suited to the 3DS.
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