15th Feb2019

‘Wondershot’ Review (Nintendo Switch)

by Britt Roberts

Wondershot-screen

A single-screen game mainly for multiplayer, Wondershot went down well at a games night I had recently. However, the brief game sessions and relatively light content wouldn’t hold up for extended play.

A genre that really lends itself to multiplayer mayhem, the Battle Arena titles are designed for quick blasts of frantic action. Wondershot takes a slightly different approach by having a ‘one-shot kill’ setup and clearly took note of Towerfall Ascension in that you have to go and reclaim your weapon after using it which is where the majority of fun comes from as you either wait for the perfect shot or just go bonkers, hoping you’ll hit someone! Speaking of which, there are several weapons in the game which are randomly assigned at the start of each round, a bow and arrow, slingshot, hammer as well as a few more, each having a different way of attacking but all well-balanced so there’s no ‘ideal’ one to yearn for, just whatever your personal preference is.

Running at a solid 30 FPS and with a birds-eye view of the action, the levels are slightly varied in layout but after an hour or so, repetition begins to creep in. As well as hedges and walls, there are also portals which can be utilised for looping arrow shots or well-timed back-attacks which always feel cool when successfully pulled off. Visually, the game is quite zoomed-in so the characters are chunky and it’s easy to see the action close up, although a few people I was playing with did have issues working out if they had a weapon or not in their hands at certain points due to the viewpoint which, if anything just adds to the overall madness. Each level lasts less than a minute before sudden death kicks in a-la Bomberman and the movement square is vastly reduced meaning that the end is nigh, following each round you unlock bonuses for multi-kills and the like adding to the competitive air.

In single player, things lose their lustre a bit, the adventure mode is a series of challenges and there is an endless mode that is just much more fun in multiplayer as you not only have to survive but raise your allies as they fall in battle against the ever more dangerous monsters warping into the action. Although different arenas are unlocked, the characters and weapons remian the same throughout the game as do the overall aesthetic of the locations meaning that the game will never really change from the original, unlocked content and so your mileage will vary depending on your love of the genre.

As I said, We played this at a recent night at mine and it went down well, although after an hour or so, we moved on. Perfect for an hour or two with friends (or alone if you enjoy the challenge mode) I can’t imagine anyone still playing this after a few sessions on it as you will pretty much have seen all there is to offer and the lack of an online leader board means you will always needs local multiplayer to get the best out of it. A neat and well-presented title with colourful cartoon visuals and tight, direct game play but not one you’ll be playing in a few months’ time.

Wondershot is available on the Nintendo eShop now.

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