18th Mar2020

‘Jump, Step, Step’ Review (Nintendo Switch)

by Chris Cummings

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From developer Phung Games and games publisher Hidden Trap comes Jump, Step, Step, a new puzzle title for the Nintendo Switch. This game, selling at a slender £4.49, could be a little something different for puzzle nerds who might be interested in an old-school isometric brain-twister, but sadly Jump, Step, Step fails to take its intriguing game style to heights that really work.

Jump, Step, Step is a gorgeous and funny programming game with bonsai trees, a crazy robot and a broken rocket. Bob is short-circuited and goes mental. Please send him a series of moves to guide him back to his ship. Without your help Bob will probably tell himself to step on a spike and die…

Playing as this crazy little robot, Bob, you jump and step across these cuboid levels, picking up your body parts and bits and bats from a broken starship as you attempt to successfully reach the end of said stage. It isn’t a simple formula though, because you’re not moving Bob around regularly, but instead using a series of directional buttons to in turn cause Bob to move in said button-combo order. It’s an interesting concept, but I found that it made me feel detached from both the story, the character and the game itself. It feels like you’re not really a part of things, and while some might enjoy this, I found it to be quite tedious. I enjoyed the first few stages well enough, but after a while I wanted more, and the game just didn’t give me it.

I think there is an audience for this type of puzzler, and those folks might find a real charm about Jump, Step, Step, but there are glowing issues to be found in both the element of detachment and the fact that a game that is supposed to be a relaxing experience can become quite the chore. You find yourself stumped often, and there were times I just shut the game off because I couldn’t figure out my next move and was bored of considering it.

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The levels are short, which is a plus here, making the game an option for those who want to pick up and play for a couple of minutes from time to time. The graphical style is fine, with the isometric camera giving it an old-school feel and look, and I thought it worked. It’s the regular frustration and irritation though, and the eventual lack of real pay-off that makes this a hard game to truly recommend. While I had fun for a couple of minutes, there were a whole load of minutes to follow where I didn’t. It’s not expensive so I guess it’s worth a shot if the idea of the game sounds up your street, but there are certainly other budget priced games out there on the Switch to pick-up that are more worth your time and money.

** 2/5

Jump, Step, Step is available on the Nintendo eShop now.

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