28th Jun2019

Digital Shorts: ‘Home Escape’ Review (Nintendo Switch)

by Chris Cummings

In DIGITAL SHORTS we review some of the latest video games that are only available digitally (at least in the UK), in a short-form review format. In this edition Chris, a newcomer to the Nintendo Switch, takes a look at Home Escape.

home-escape-screen

Being new to the Nintendo Switch means I am still figuring out the layout of the system and the controllers, those cool, slick and unusual Joy-Con controllers that you can hold in each hand in a free-moving fashion. This game, Home Escape, by new game creators Pat-o-logic Studio, is a good lesson in using these controllers, while also being a game that is as dark and twisted as it is intense and challenging.

So, the basic story of Home Escape is that there’s a young man who is stuck in a terrible situation and you have to try to help him escape the abuse of his home. He is surrounded by a variety of terrifying and awful threats and it is your job, with a Joy-Con in each hand, to swing your arms and swiftly knock those threats away while trying to pull the kid to safety. You can play alone for an ultra-challenging experience or hand one of the controllers to a buddy and use team-work to get past the 40 increasingly difficult levels.

I was surprised at how morose and melancholy a story Home Escape had on offer, and pleasantly surprised too, as a fan of cute-yet-creepy animation and the more depressing story games out there. It is simple in gameplay, like all the good puzzle games are, yet it also forces you into a corner as you swing frantically and try to stop various threats from reaching the kid you’re attempting to save from this horrific home.

This game is perfect for the console, using the switch controllers very well to create something both unique yet familiar, the familiarity coming with the fact of how simple the premise and aim of the game is. The difficulty curve is nicely paced, as you start quite easily passing a few levels, and then things turn up a few notches and become harder. I liked the pacing, I liked the animation style and I liked the ease of play. This is a solid game that you can just pick up and play for a few minutes or crack out for a laugh during a party or gathering with friends at home. A party game, if there ever was one, yet with a gloomy twist.

It’s all about reflexes and knowing your surroundings, as well as getting into a rhythm, and if you manage to find that rhythm in a certain level, then you might have it cracked. For the price of a mere £1.59 on the Nintendo eShop, I think it’s a bargain. Check it out, it’s a lot of fun.

Home Escape is available on the Nintendo eShop right now.

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