Hello gentle readers, and welcome to the SwitchArcade Round-Up for December 13th, 2022. In today’s article, we’ve got a bit of Tetris 99 related news to get going on. After that, a couple of brief reviews of the rather good Wavetale and Jitsu Squad. Then there are the new releases, which is just a pair of games but one of them is a Final Fantasy. After that, we’ve got the usual lists of new and outgoing sales. Neat. Why don’t we get going on all of that?
‘Tetris 99’ Will Feature ‘Kirby’s Dream Buffet’ in the Next Maximus Cup
Gee, it’s been a hot minute since the last Tetris 99 Maximus Cup event, hasn’t it? There was a catch-up event back in early August, so technically the last new theme was added in April when Kirby and the Forgotten Land released. Well. Anyway, we’ve finally got a new theme coming when the latest Maximus Cup event kicks off this weekend and it’s… it’s Kirby, people! I think the developers really like him. This time it’s Kirby’s Dream Buffet in the spotlight, the blink-and-you-missed it multiplayer-focused spin-off that hit the Switch back in August. I will probably play with this theme longer than I played the game. The usual rules apply: play the game, gather 100 event points, and unlock the theme for keeps. It starts on Thursday the 15th at 11:00 PM Pacific Time and runs through Monday the 19th at 10:59 PM Pacific.
Reviews & Mini-Views
Jitsu Squad ($29.99)
I’ll keep this one relatively short, because there isn’t too much fancy about Jitsu Squad that needs excessive explanation. It’s a gorgeous little beat-em-up for up to two players via local multiplayer. There are eight decently-sized stages packed with lots of fun background details that do a good job of distracting you from how little variety there is in enemy behaviors. It takes a while to open up your moves on each character, so the early going is a bit repetitive, but it eventually sorts itself out. And gosh, is it a looker. Beautiful cartoon-style graphics, fast action, tons of enemies on-screen, it’s all the right kind of chaos.
If you enjoy beat-em-ups, particularly the ones from the late 00s/early 10s era like Scott Pilgrim or Castle Crashers, you’ll probably enjoy what Jitsu Squad has to offer. It’s a bit short on technique and I do wish the unlockable tag team mode was simply there from the start. Four players to go with the four characters would have been nice as well. But it gets a lot more right than it gets wrong, and its big, silly energy is hard to deny.
SwitchArcade Score: 3.5/5
First of all, if you are the sort that needs a game at this price point to offer tons of playtime, Wavetale probably won’t do it for you. It’s a relatively brief affair, wrapping up in about five or six hours, and I appreciate that isn’t going to work for some folks. That being said, I really was surprised at how much I enjoyed Wavetale. It’s kind of a 3D platformer where you travel from location to location by sliding along the top of the water in a very fast and fluid manner. You can also swing from various hook points, and the game is fully designed for you to be able to zip along where you need to go in a way that makes you feel very cool.
Most of the activities you’re doing involve going to particular spots and fetching some sort of thing, usually at the end of a climb or a bit of combat. The platforming never gets too difficult, though the camera can occasionally be a bit of a bear. The combat similarly is fairly breezy, again as long as the camera isn’t being a pig. On the whole Wavetale is a pretty chill game, and its story is interesting enough that the time you’ll spend with it just flies by. The only thing really holding back the experience are the tech issues. Loading times are lengthy. The framerate could be smoother. I don’t think the UI choices really work well in handheld mode. Nothing major, but it’s enough that I would probably suggest grabbing this on another platform if you have the option.
Aside from those tech issues, I don’t have a lot of bad things to say about Wavetale. I’m a sucker for games with great movement, and gosh does this one nail that. When you’re out zipping around on the water and flinging yourself about like an ocean-bound Spider-Man, the sheer glee is palpable. Indeed, the game could have been twice as long and I doubt I would have tired of that core gameplay. Alas, it finishes up fairly quickly. A grand time while it lasts, though.
SwitchArcade Score: 4/5
Crisis Core -Final Fantasy VII- Reunion ($49.99)
A billion years ago on Final Fantasy VII‘s tenth anniversary, Square Enix deployed an array of Final Fantasy VII-related spin-off projects. Some were more successful than others, but all of them added extra plot to the game’s story that was mostly unwelcome. In my opinion the best of them was the PlayStation Portable game Crisis Core, a prequel that filled in the story of Zack, the Soldier whose identity Cloud more or less stole. Also took his girlfriend, the absolute cad. Anyway, here’s a spiffy remake of the game. Fresh new HD graphics, new voices that match the FFVII Remake, new soundtrack arrangements, and an improved battle system. I’ll have a review of this one soon.
Wild Romance ($9.99)
Bored of life in Tokyo, our normal-guy protagonist Kazuma decides to head back to his hometown in the countryside. He reconnects with his four childhood friends, who are of course all cute girls, and after a series of events learns that they’re actually animal spirits in human form. Fox-girl! Cat-girl! Dog-girl! Tanuki-girl! They’re all here for the smooching. You’ll also find out about the supernatural history of Kazuma’s hometown. Just another harmless romance visual novel.
(North American eShop, US Prices)
Well, that’s not a lot. ElecHead is a fun puzzle-platformer that is at a new low price. The rest of the inbox is nothing special or unusual, but have a look anyway. It won’t take but a second. Not much to worry about in the outbox, either. I mean, if you want that Front Mission 1st: Remake at the introductory price, now is the moment. Don’t wait until tomorrow. But Forever Entertainment does a lot of sales, so I imagine you will have another chance at a discount if you let this one slide.
Select New Games on Sale
Wuppo: Definitive Edition ($1.99 from $14.99 until 12/25)
ElecHead ($7.99 from $9.99 until 12/26)
Bot.vinnik Chess ($1.99 from $2.99 until 12/26)
Shadow Gangs ($17.99 from $23.99 until 1/2)
Mail Mole + Expansions ($9.99 from $14.99 until 1/2)
Discolored ($2.49 from $9.99 until 1/2)
Sales Ending Tomorrow, Wednesday, December 14th
Arietta of Spirits ($4.99 from $19.99 until 12/14)
Front Mission 1st: Remake ($31.49 from $34.99 until 12/14)
Skautfold: Shrouded in Sanity ($2.49 from $9.99 until 12/14)
Sturmfront The Mutant War ($2.49 from $9.99 until 12/14)
Vampire the Masquerade CoNY ($2.99 from $19.99 until 12/14)
Vampire the Masquerade SoNY ($3.24 from $12.99 until 12/14)
That’s all for today, friends. We’ll be back tomorrow with some new releases, some new sales, and maybe some news or reviews. Depends on how frisky I’m feeling. I tell you, trying to review a new Final Fantasy release and a new Dragon Quest release in one week is a real trip. I hope you all have a terrific Tuesday, and as always, thanks for reading!