Hello gentle readers, and welcome to the SwitchArcade Round-Up for May 25th, 2023. We start things off today with a review of Convergence from our pal Mikhail. After that, it’s new release time. There are somewhere near forty new games hitting the eShop today, and yes, that is extremely stupid. Most of them could be Thanos-snapped out of existence and no one would ever mourn them. I summarize all of them anyway because I am an abject fool. We finish up with the new and expiring sales of the day, just for extra pepper. Let’s go!
Reviews & Mini-Views
Convergence: A League of Legends Story ($29.99)
A month after launching the excellent The Mageseeker, Riot Forge is back with Convergence: A League of Legends Story. If you’ve not kept up with Riot Forge, it is Riot Games’ label for bringing premium experiences in the League of Legends universe to all platforms. I’ve been experiencing these games as someone new to the universe, and they’ve been doing a good job of still making the games enjoyable. While The Mageseeker was an action RPG from the developers of Moonlighter, Convergence: A League of Legends Story is a Metroidvania that exceeded my expectations, but one that feels lacking on Switch in its current state.
Convergence: A League of Legends Story feels like an introduction to League of Legends‘ Ekko who is known as the “boy who shattered time”. With that, the rewind mechanic in Convergence: A League of Legends Story makes a lot of sense. Blending in story-driven platformers and Metroidvania ended up working very well in Convergence: A League of Legends Story. Not only do you have excellent level design, but the abilities really elevate the experience. Rewinding, learning, progressing, and taking on many enemies and bosses never got old here.
Convergence: A League of Legends Story also has some accessibility options to tweak the difficulty to your liking. The difficulty curve feels a bit steep in parts so make sure to check these out if you’re having trouble through the various encounters during the story.
Visually, Convergence: A League of Legends Story ended up being better than I expected. I love the aesthetic, character designs, and the animations here. The only area that needs work is the performance. Load times aren’t terrible, but they are long, and performance is too variable. It never holds a steady frame rate and there is some hitching as well depending on the scene. I hope this can be fixed. On the audio side, the music was fine, but I’m very glad that Convergence: A League of Legends Story has voice acting included.
Convergence: A League of Legends Story is a game I definitely recommend on another platform. In its current state, the performance is a bit too variable for my liking on Switch. If it sees more optimization through updates, I’ll feel differently. Right now, it is an excellent platformer with polished gameplay and level design, but one held back by technical issues on Switch. I hope this does get fixed because the genre perfectly suits Nintendo’s hybrid system. This is definitely one of Riot Forge’s best releases so far, which makes the Switch version all the more disappointing. -Mikhail Madnani
SwitchArcade Score: 3.5/5
Cassette Beasts ($19.99)
Here’s the next game stepping up to the plate trying to offer up its own style of monster-catching fun. Well, you’re not really catching monsters here so much as capturing their abilities on cassette so that you can transform into them later. There’s a whole world to explore, lots of characters to meet, and a battle system that certainly offers a lot of potential for deep and engaging combat. Unfortunately, it’s a little buggy at the moment, but it may have a day one patch incoming. I believe our pal Mikhail is looking at this one for a review in the future, so we’ll have to see how things go.
Star Gagnant ($38.00)
Regular readers know that I’m a big fan of developer Terarin’s shoot-em-ups, and this is probably his biggest swing yet. Under supervision of former Hudson wonder boy Takahashi Meijin, a man known for his ability to hit a button at virtually inhuman speeds, Terarin has crafted a vertically-scrolling shooter that relies on your ability to regulate your rapid fire button-pressing. It features an arcade mode with seven stages, a caravan mode, a special challenge mode, and a unique rapid fire mode where up to four players can compete to see who can hit the buttons fastest. The production values here are higher than what we usually see in Terarin’s games, and the price has stepped up accordingly. Your call, but at least there’s a demo.
This one comes from publisher Annapurna Interactive and developer Graceful Decay, and it looks pretty cool. It’s one of those puzzle adventure games that plays with perspective. If you stand in the center of the world, you’ll be like a giant towering over everything. Move further out and you’ll get smaller as the objects get bigger. Naturally you’ll have to take advantage of this to overcome the situations placed before you. Did I mention this is a love story? It’s a love story. Probably some kind of metaphor going on here. Mikhail will be reviewing this for us, so do look forward to that.
Pulling No Punches ($9.99)
This is probably the most accurate title for a game I’ve seen in a while. This is a beat-em-up set during a fictional pandemic that is fictionally killing lots of people around the world, and the fictional scientists haven’t been able to prepare a vaccine yet. So the fictional people in this hypothetical scenario are wearing masks and using sanitizer, but some of the fictional people are fictionally not doing the minimal precautions to keep everyone fictionally safe. This angers the fictional protagonists who go on a rampage beating the ever-loving heck out of these fictional selfish people. The first boss, who is fictional, injects himself with bleach or something. Fictional bleach. Look, if you’re a bit sensitive about this hypothetical premise, you’re not going to like what this game has to say. It… pulls no punches. Solid little brawler on top of that. I’ll have a review soon.
The Case of the Golden Idol ($17.99)
A detective adventure with a unique art style. Investigate twelve grisly murders, search for clues, and then do your best to solve the cases with your powers of observation and deduction. This game has scorchingly great reviews over on Steam, garnering a lot of comparisons to the incredible Return of the Obra Dinn, and I’m eagerly looking forward to diving into it on Switch. I believe Mikhail will be looking into this one for a review, so I can just buckle in and enjoy it at my pace.
Bat Boy ($14.99)
No, not the one from the Weekly World News. Unfortunately. Loved that little goblin. No, this is a sports-themed action-platformer that seems inspired by the likes of Mega Man and Shovel Knight. Using your trusty bat, you’ll need to travel through twelve stages to rescue your brainwashed friends. This one is a little buggy at the moment, so you might want to wait and see if it gets a patch or two to sort things out before you jump in.
Hello Goodboy ($14.99)
Look, this game promises a wholesome adventure, but I’m not buying it. The premise is about a boy who wakes up in the afterlife without any memories and only a strangely familiar dog to guide him. Is there any way this ends without tears? I can’t imagine it! Travel around the afterlife, meet various characters, help them with their stuff, and give the dog belly rubs. Give the dog as many belly rubs as you want. Your time isn’t unlimited, so you’ll have to pick and choose who you help out and subsequently which stories you see on your playthrough. Wholesome? Another game in cahoots with Big Tissue, no doubt.
An action-adventure game about a Terracotta warrior who has to save the Qin Dynasty of China. No big deal. It has a lot of tricky puzzles to solve and some interesting mechanics to dig into. Lots of swapping between two different worlds, which is always an interesting way to set up puzzles and other challenges. Not overwhelmingly great, but there’s something here to chew on if you’re intrigued by its premise.
Fights in Tight Spaces ($24.99)
Take a turn-based strategy game, throw in some deck-building elements, and do it all up in a very stylish manner, and that’s Fights in Tight Spaces. With action movies and TV shows doing a lot of hallway, elevator, and small room fights, it feels like this was an idea that should have come a lot sooner. There are more than two hundred cards to choose from, and you get to watch your moves play out in some scenes you’ll probably get tired of quickly and start skipping. But hey, it’s the thought that counts. This got decent reviews when it came out last year on computers, and I imagine it will find a receptive audience on Switch too.
Another one of those first-person platformers that leans into the whole speedrunning thing to try to stretch its content out a bit longer. The visuals use that whole neon style that is getting vaguely tiresome at this point for me. Perhaps you’re more fond of it, and of digging into yet another one of these.
Sigh. Okay, well. It’s a rhythm game, and a fairly simple one at that. It’s four dollars, so scale your expectations appropriately. Apparently you don’t have to do very well at this game to see the story progress, and it’s proud enough about this that it mentions it twice in the description. I’m just vexed because it’s using that overdone faux-1980s thing as one of its backgrounds. Don’t mind me.
Arcade Archives Rolling Thunder 2 ($7.99)
This week’s Arcade Archives release is Rolling Thunder 2, which is one of the games that was already available via the Namco Museum collection on Switch. It’s a solid follow-up to Namco’s influential run-and-gun action game, and if you happen to want the features that come with an Arcade Archives release or just want this game and not the others in the existing set, there’s nothing wrong with picking it up here.
To The Rescue! ($19.99)
This is a dog shelter simulator, and I’m hoping it leaves out the more depressing parts of such places. Take care of dozens of dogs, meeting all of their needs such as food, health, and so on. Each dog is uniquely generated, and not only do you have to nurture them but must also match them up with adopters to send them to a happy home. On top of all that, you need to balance the budget and upgrade where you can. Certainly an unusual premise, and I can see some people going for it.
Onigo Hunter ($14.99)
Kemco and EXE-Create have another RPG for us this week, and you probably know how this dance goes by now. The story sees a fledgling hunter tasked by a princess to find her missing father, the king. You can capture monsters and turn them into equipment or items, and equipping different gear can actually change your character’s appearance. I’m not sure I’d spend fifteen bucks on it, but it might be nice to gnash your teeth on if you grab it on sale.
End of Lines ($16.99)
This one is touted as an interactive graphic novel, but it’s more or less a choice-based adventure. You have to manage supplies and the morale of a group of survivors after a climate-based apocalypse hits. The art is quite nice, and the game does its best to make you feel the results of every choice. Maybe not the best thing to play if you’re worried about climate change, but if you can handle a grim prediction of the future then you might be entertained by this game.
Finally, in Love Again ($29.99)
Here’s the latest otome visual novel from the folks at Voltage. Our heroine is a pastry chef who has focused on her career at the expense of her personal life for many years. She feels like her chance for love has passed by when suddenly she meets five hunky dudes all at once. Wow, that’s lucky. Make your choices and see who she ends up smooching in the end.
Hush Hush ($20.00)
This one apparently is a spin-off of a game called Crush Crush? I’m not familiar with it. But this is a visual novel with some dating sim elements, and that is something I’m quite familiar with. The description doesn’t give us even the barest hint of the premise, but there are five different girls you can woo, each with their own secret that you’ll need to discover and deal with on the road to romance.
Akaiito HD Remaster ($11.99)
Okay, let’s look at a visual novel that isn’t about dating. Kei’s mother, her last living relative, has passed away. While dealing with her inheritance, she finds out that her late father owned a mansion in a place called Hemizuka. She goes to check out the property, and on her way there has an unsettling dream. What is it about? And what secrets will Kei find waiting for her in Hemizuka?
Aoishiro HD Remaster ($11.99)
From the same developer as Akaiito HD Remaster, this is another visual novel. Syouko is the head of the kendo club at her school. While on a training camp in Unasaka, her and the club manager Yasumi come across a mysterious girl laying unconscious on a beach. They help her out and when she comes to, she introduces herself as Nami. This girl has secrets, and by the end of the story Syouko and Yasumi’s lives will have taken a major turn.
Welcome Kokuri-san ($24.99)
This is a short visual novel that stars a VTuber named Kurune Kokuri, who as near as I can tell is well-known for her ASMR streams. And this game leans into it, sending you on an investigation of seven mysteries with Kokuri by your side. She’ll be making all those noises that people pay the big Superchats to hear, right in your ear holes. Given the nature of what this is and the price it’s going for, I imagine it’s one for the fans. But the fans will probably like it a lot.
Kizuna AI – Touch the Beat! ($34.99)
Speaking of VTubers, here’s one of the original stars of that profession. It’s a rhythm game with fifteen songs performed by Kizuna AI, which naturally includes Hello, Morning. You can probably guess how the gameplay works by that screenshot up there. The description promises DLC to come, with more songs and outfits being added among other things. Fans of Kizuna AI will likely swallow that hefty price, but I can’t help but feel a bit iffy about recommending a rhythm game with only fifteen songs to play for more than thirty bucks. You do you, though.
Last Labyrinth -Lucidity Lost- ($29.99)
This is an escape adventure game where your main character wakes up in an unknown location, strapped in a chair. In the room with them is a girl whose mysterious language isn’t understood by the protagonist. You’ll have to work with her to get out of the place you’ve been confined to, but what’s her deal anyway? Perhaps you’ll get some clues along the way, or perhaps that will remain an unanswered question. This is a VR game on other platforms, and it shows. I’m not sure it’s quite as impressive without that gimmick, but there’s some solid talent behind it that helps elevate the experience.
Waifu Space Conquest ($4.99)
Another one of those QIX knock-offs where you have to carve off portions of the screen by drawing lines, trying not to get hit by any enemies as you go. You’ll be rewarded with saucy pictures of anime ladies as rewards for your hard work. Fifty levels to play, six power-ups to use, six enemy types to deal with, and an image gallery for all those images you uncover.
Super Night Riders ($4.99)
An arcade-style motorcycle driving game that says it’s inspired by the classics. Your mind might go to Super Hang-On, but it’s closer to Out Run in practice. There are other racers on the road, but you’re really only up against the timer. Reach the checkpoints in time and you’ll keep going. There are six different courses to race on, with six stages contained within each. Not the fanciest steak on the plate, but for five bucks it might be amusing enough.
True Disc Golf ($14.99)
You know, I kind of like disc golf. And I think it makes for a really good video game, too. I played the heck out of the one in the PlayStation 3 Sports Champions. I doubt this one is quite up to that, but it does offer up four courses with eighteen holes each to play. Up to four players can join in via local multiplayer, and it has support for standard, touch, or motion controls. Might be fun, especially if your friends or family members are into it.
Best Forklift Operator ($19.99)
Are you the best operator, or are you operating the best forklift? Ambiguous, friends. Very ambiguous. Anyway, drive the forklift. Complete missions. Make some money. Probably buy some upgrades? I can’t imagine what else you would do with the money you earn. If you haven’t gotten enough forklift fun from the other two or three forklift games on Switch, here’s one more.
This game has big five-dollar Switch platformer energy, but it costs a bit more than that. You play as a little moon fellow who has the ability to change day to night with his jump. Your goal is to collect all of the stars on each stage. Cute visuals, if nothing else.
Coloring Pixels: Collection 3 ($7.95)
Color the numbered pixels with the appropriate color to fill in the pictures. There are one hundred and eighty pictures in all. Not much more to add to this one.
Fantasy Tower Defense ($2.99)
I feel like we already have an equally generic game with this exact same title on the eShop already, but EpiXR Games is going to do what it’s going to do. It’s about as plain of a tower defense game as you could possibly imagine. Worth three bucks? That’s up to you.
Vaccine Rebirth ($6.99)
Wow, that really does nail the early PlayStation 1 aesthetic nicely. Your friend has been infected and you need investigate a procedurally-generated mansion to find the cure. There’s support for local two player multiplayer here, which is neat. Curing your friend once won’t do the job completely, so you’ll ultimately have to figure out the secret behind the virus and the mansion itself to save them for good. If you’re into the early era of survival horror games and aren’t turned off by the random generation element, this might be worth a swing.
Santa’s Monster Shootout ($1.99)
It’s almost June, so it makes perfect sense to have a Christmas-themed game ready to go. Naturally, you’ve got Santa, and he’s got a gun. As he does. There are zombies and monsters trying to steal all the presents, and the only way you know how to negotiate is with hot lead. Completely ridiculous, but it’s only two bucks so it might be worth it just for the laughs.
Serene Hike ($4.99)
Okay, you’re not going to believe this, but Ultimate Games has a hiking game! You just walk around through nature and check out some buildings along the way. I wonder how many of these Ultimate Games will end up churning out before the idea burns out? My guess is at least one more.
BlackSmith HIT ($4.99)
This is a simple one. The metal will come down the line, and you need to hit the hot ones and toss the cool ones. There are twenty different characters to choose from, and each one comes with their own background. A second player can join in via local multiplayer, in case you want to compete for scores or something. It seems to have all the depth of a puddle, but for a fiver it might be to the taste of some.
Bee in the Valley ($4.99)
You play as a bee who needs to gather flowers in each stage to replenish the stock of honey in the hive. There are lots of hazards and enemies that will get in your way, so you’ll have to pull off some fancy flying if you want to move through the stages quickly. And move quickly you must, as you’ve got a tight time limit measured by how much honey is in the hive. You can also find some bee friends to help you out, and you’ll need their special skills as the difficulty ramps up in each valley. Seems okay for the price.
Octo Curse ($9.99)
A pirate gets turned into an octopus and has to make his way through more than one hundred levels of platforming to break the curse and rescue his crew. Features unlockable hats, in case you were wondering about its “five-dollar Switch platformer” credentials. Sadly, ten dollars.
Marlon’s Mystery: The Darkside of Crime ($9.99)
I appreciate that Cooking & Publishing is at least trying to do better as it goes on. This is a mystery adventure game that clearly builds on what the publisher has been doing with its choice-based narrative games, and almost approaches the level of a proper thing I wouldn’t chase people away from buying. Almost.
Move The Pin: Classic Logic Puzzle ($9.99)
On the other hand, I have no trouble chasing people away from this one. It’s basically those pin puzzles that you see so many mobile puzzle games falsely promising in their ads. Pull the pins out in the right order, and you win. Pull them out in the wrong order, and you don’t. Seems like you could find a million free games like this on your mobile device, but if you want to blow a tenner don’t let me stop you.
Slasher – Sword RPG Impact Simulator ($8.99)
I love that we have companies like GOGAME CONSOLE PUBLISHER out here showing the true value of a Kemco RPG. Absolute dross, this is. Not much of an RPG either. Leave it in the bin where it belongs. Keep some room in that bin though, we’re not finished.
Need for Drive – Car Racing ($8.99)
Now from the totally different company VG Games, we have a racing game so awful that it advertises a lack of upgrades as a feature. There are so many better racing games on the Switch for not that much more money. Don’t toss your cash at this junk. Into the bin with ye! But wait, there’s more!
Racing Drift Taxi Car Simulator Ultimate ($9.99)
VG Games also has this, which appears to be the world’s crappiest Crazy Taxi rip-off. This makes BoomHits stuff look like Gran Turismo. Slide it in the bin next to its kin, but save one more spot because it’s not over yet.
World War: Combat Guardian ($14.99)
TROOOZE usually doesn’t go directly into the bin, but it’s all getting very exhausting today. This is another one of its first-person shooters, this time apparently a second part to World War: Prologue. It’s set in World War II and plays out pretty much exactly the same as this publisher’s other first-person shooters. Just sort of slide it into the bin. It’s okay. I won’t tell anyone.
(North American eShop, US Prices)
One of those rare Arcade Archives sales, friends. Time to stock up, especially on those Namco releases. They’re 30% off to celebrate the fiftieth Namco game being added to the line-up, so don’t expect such occasions to roll around often. Beyond that, Alan Wake is as cheap as it has ever been, and Haiku, the Robot has a nice discount to prepare for its final big update which is coming soon. Check both of those lists!
Select New Games on Sale
Haiku, the Robot ($13.39 from $19.99 until 5/29)
Nobody Saves the World ($14.99 from $24.99 until 5/31)
Guacamelee Super Turbo CE ($3.74 from $14.99 until 5/31)
Guacamelee 2 ($4.99 from $19.99 until 5/31)
Severed ($3.74 from $14.99 until 5/31)
Tales From Space MBA ($3.49 from $9.99 until 5/31)
Uzzuuzzu My Pet ($1.99 from $14.99 until 5/31)
Garden Story ($9.99 from $19.99 until 6/1)
Azur Lane: Crosswave ($14.99 from $49.99 until 6/7)
Super Neptunia RPG ($7.99 from $39.99 until 6/7)
Megadimension Neptunia VII ($8.99 from $29.99 until 6/7)
Death end re;Quest 2 ($14.99 from $49.99 until 6/7)
Dusk Diver 2 ($34.99 from $49.99 until 6/7)
Mary Skelter 2 ($9.99 from $39.99 until 6/7)
ACA NEOGEO Aero Fighters 3 ($3.99 from $7.99 until 6/8)
ACA NEOGEO Top Hunter R&C ($3.99 from $7.99 until 6/8)
ACA NEOGEO Zed Blade ($3.99 from $7.99 until 6/8)
ACA NEOGEO 2020 Super Baseball ($3.99 from $7.99 until 6/8)
ACA NEOGEO Art of Fighting 2 ($3.99 from $7.99 until 6/8)
ACA NEOGEO Metal Slug 3 ($3.99 from $7.99 until 6/8)
ACA NEOGEO Samurai Shodown IV ($3.99 from $7.99 until 6/8)
ACA NEOGEO Real Bout Fatal Fury ($3.99 from $7.99 until 6/8)
ACA NEOGEO Nam-1975 ($3.99 from $7.99 until 6/8)
ACA NEOGEO The King of Fighters 97 ($3.99 from $7.99 until 6/8)
Arcade Archives Mappy ($5.59 from $7.99 until 6/8)
Arcade Archives Genji & the Heike Clans ($5.59 from $7.99 until 6/8)
Arcade Archives Pac-Man ($5.59 from $7.99 until 6/8)
Arcade Archives Super Pac-Man ($5.59 from $7.99 until 6/8)
Arcade Archives Youkai Douchuki ($5.59 from $7.99 until 6/8)
Arcade Archives Gaplus ($5.59 from $7.99 until 6/8)
Arcade Archives Dragon Buster ($5.59 from $7.99 until 6/8)
Arcade Archives The Legend of Valkyrie ($5.59 from $7.99 until 6/8)
Arcade Archives Dragon Spirit ($5.59 from $7.99 until 6/8)
Arcade Archives Xevious ($5.59 from $7.99 until 6/8)
Amnesia: Memories ($34.99 from $49.99 until 6/8)
Amnesia: Later x Crowd ($34.99 from $49.99 until 6/8)
Steel Defier ($3.49 from $4.99 until 6/8)
Petite Adventure ($2.49 from $4.99 until 6/8)
Alan Wake Remastered ($17.99 from $29.99 until 6/8)
Wonderland Nights: WRD ($4.19 from $6.99 until 6/8)
CyberHeroes Arena DX ($2.99 from $4.99 until 6/8)
Headbangers in Holiday Hell ($3.59 from $5.99 until 6/8)
Panda Punch ($2.49 from $4.99 until 6/8)
The Guise ($4.19 from $5.99 until 6/8)
Gunman Tales ($4.89 from $6.99 until 6/8)
FoxyLand ($1.99 from $4.99 until 6/8)
FoxyLand 2 ($2.39 from $5.99 until 6/8)
Distraint Collection ($5.99 from $11.99 until 6/8)
Trenches ($5.99 from $9.99 until 6/8)
Attack of the Toy Tanks ($1.99 from $4.99 until 6/8)
Thunderflash ($1.99 from $4.99 until 6/8)
Ultra Pixel Survive ($3.49 from $4.99 until 6/8)
Bouncy Bullets ($1.99 from $4.99 until 6/8)
Bouncy Bullets 2 ($1.99 from $4.99 until 6/8)
Billy 101 ($3.49 from $4.99 until 6/8)
Thunder Paw ($1.99 from $4.99 until 6/8)
Apparition ($1.99 from $9.99 until 6/14)
Sales Ending Tomorrow, Friday, May 26th
1993 Shenandoah ($8.70 from $12.99 until 5/26)
Arcane Vale ($4.79 from $7.99 until 5/26)
Attack on Beetle ($2.39 from $5.99 until 5/26)
Breakneck City ($3.99 from $9.99 until 5/26)
Cresteaju ($2.79 from $6.99 until 5/26)
Graze Counter GM ($10.49 from $14.99 until 5/26)
Gruta ($3.99 from $4.99 until 5/26)
In the Mood ($2.49 from $4.99 until 5/26)
Lila’s Tale & the Hidden Forest ($3.49 from $4.99 until 5/26)
Marlon’s Mystery ($8.99 from $9.99 until 5/26)
Piczle Lines 2 ($11.24 from $14.99 until 5/26)
Pretty Girls Four Kings Solitaire ($3.59 from $5.99 until 5/26)
Railway Islands: Puzzle ($2.99 from $3.99 until 5/26)
Shape Neon Chaos ($1.99 from $30.00 until 5/26)
Sofiya & the Ancient Clan ($4.79 from $7.99 until 5/26)
The Dead Tree of Ranchiuna ($3.99 from $9.99 until 5/26)
Thunder Kid II: Null Mission ($3.19 from $7.99 until 5/26)
Thunder Kid: HftRE ($3.19 from $7.99 until 5/26)
Vaporum: Lockdown ($7.47 from $21.99 until 5/26)
Velocity Noodle ($8.44 from $12.99 until 5/26)
Z-Warp ($3.49 from $6.99 until 5/26)
That’s all for today, friends. We’ll be back tomorrow with the remaining releases of the week, plus what I’m sure will be a healthy list of new sales. If there’s any gigantic news, I’ll slide that in there too. I hope you all have a lovely Thursday, and as always, thanks for reading!