swordship banner

Swordship, Nintendo Switch Review

When we were offered Swordship on the Nintendo Switch, I jumped at the chance. It’s a great-looking game that didn’t look like it was trying to do too much other than entertain. It’s an arcade-style dodge-em where you spend your time dodging, weaving and diving your way through an onslaught of enemies hell-bent on tearing your Swordship apart. All to deliver some parcels. Deadlines need to be hit, and targets need to be met.

Publishers Thunderful has created a stressful but highly entertaining gem of a game.

In the parcel delivery business, every second counts.

If the description “a futuristic lightning-fast dodge-em” doesn’t sell the game to you, then I don’t know what would. I didn’t get what I expected, though. This isn’t a casual game. This isn’t a game I can just play one round, do something else, and then pick it back up. I became addicted. There’s no putting this down. There are parcels to be delivered, and I’m frustrated that my ship got blown out of the water in the last round. I need to go again. And so started an endless repeating cycle that had my girlfriend asking me to go to sleep whilst I gently put my finger to her mouth to shush her because I needed to end this game on a high.

Swordship Screenshot 16

Lightning-fast Gameplay

There are Roguelike elements to the gameplay in that each new run resets to the beginning. This adds a nice additional challenge. It’s a challenge I’m used to, having sunk a ridiculous amount of hours into Dead Cells. Unlike Dead Cells, though, you get the benefit of ship modifications staying with you.

By delivering those pesky parcels and scoring high scores, you can acquire ship modifications.

Scoring is achieved by performing death-defying manoeuvres and destroying enemy units. The added challenge? Your vehicle has no weapons of its own. In order to achieve the latter objective of destroying enemies requires strategic manoeuvring that results in your enemies destroying each other. That part is fairly easy at first – gun turrets, for example, take a few seconds to focus their laser on your recent position, giving you time to hover by another enemy and then dodge or dive to avoid the shot which destroys the enemy you were hovering beside. Simple at first, but when there are loads of enemies on the screen at the same time, it can become quite a challenge to time and position everything correctly.

The trick is to learn what each enemy type does and utilise quick reflexes to use them against each other in ever increasingly frantic situations.

As for the containers you have to collect and deliver, this becomes harder with every level as more and more enemies appear on the screen to stop you. The designated drop-off spot only appears for a few seconds, and in those few seconds, you might be spending your time desperately trying to avoid numerous enemies attacking you all at once. You want to try and get as many as you can to their designated spot, though, in order to level up after each level. As a score boost (to unlock content at the next level), containers can either be invested to gain some nice level-ups. Aside from that, they can be used to purchase extra lives, which are very useful once difficulty increases.

Swordship Screenshot 06

The simple yet beautiful graphics.

Swordship is absolutely stunning. It’s not a game heavy on details. Gameplay and graphics are clearly tailored to maximise the Nintendo Switch’s hardware to ensure a smooth experience.

The ships are slick, and the large fonts add some pazazz and make the menu system striking. The game encourages you to have “just one more go” when you die, and god damn, does that splash screen short work. Yeah, I’ll have one more go! As enjoyable as the game is, the style of the splash screens really makes you want to keep playing. The effective typography and colours play into my childish nature. It plays to your base gaming urges, and I’m here for it.

The ship designs give off some Wipeout vibes, but that’s as far as design influences stretch, as far as I can tell. And even then, the ship designs still look unique. The graphics help with that, as do the bursts of colour and smooth animations that tie everything together.

Swordship Screenshot 09

Conclusions

Swordship on the Nintendo Switch will easily go down as one of the best games I’ve reviewed – and I’ve reviewed some really great games! The style and gameplay constantly drag you back in. There are games that are just perfect for the Switch, and Swordship is one of them. It’s a great example of keeping things simple whilst being able to ramp up the fun. It does one thing, it does it well, and it’s incredibly fulfilling on so many levels.

You get a nice challenge that feels rewarding. All of this is eased into you gently before everything spirals out of control.

If you like dodge-em games, this one is a good addition to your game library. This is everything an arcade-style game should be.

Swordship | Nintendo Switch download

A code was kindly provided for us to review this.

We Score This Game

rating score: 10

Absolutely Fantastic!

You Might Also Like

Subscribe
Notify of
guest
0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x