There is no shortage of puzzle platformers in this day and age, but there is certainly a shortage of games in this genre which are actually good. The advent of lower barriers to entry on various game marketplaces has allowed for many indie success stories, but also for a greatly increased amount of shovelware to wade through. Octahedron: Transfixed Edition is luckily a solid game with a strong, consistent visual style and a thumping soundtrack that helps to complete the sense of “being there” as well as any other component of the game. If you’re looking for a new platformer on the Switch to fill your time, look no further.
Rain World shows up to the table with a lot of good ideas but fails to execute successfully on many of them. What should probably be a challenging but enjoyable game feels more like a directionless, unintuitive slog that, while mostly pretty to look at, is confusing and possibly overly difficult for the sake of being difficult. I can see a situation where just a few tweaks to character movement (namely improved speed and agility) would go a long way toward making this game feel like a properly balanced challenge. It’s entirely possible that the point of the game is to be really hard, but if so I find the controls, mobility and systems design is at odds with that intention, because as a player I never felt empowered to deal with the challenges laid before me so much as at the mercy of the whims of whomever is pulling the strings.
The Swindle is an enjoyable enough game which I would probably rate higher on other platforms, but the additional shortcomings with the Switch version in handheld mode make it a little more difficult for me to recommend. If the technical issues aren’t deal breakers for you, and if you’re looking for something you can play in short bursts and which will let you progress quickly, this is a fine enough choice. If you can play it on another platform, I’d suggest going that route instead.
The Messenger is one of the most successful contemporary takes on 80s and 90s platforming I've ever had the pleasure of experiencing. Where many games attempt to cash in on easy nostalgia plays and fall short of impressing anybody, The Messenger wholeheartedly embraces the design philosophies from the era of its inspiration and uses them as a framework for experimentation rather than a set of guidelines to be ignored as often as they're followed.
To put it succinctly, Forsaken Remastered is the complete package. It is a heavily faithful adaptation of a classic from an era when PC games were still getting their 3D sea-legs and experimenting with the format, and the feeling of playing games from that time remains alive and well within it. More importantly, Forsaken Remastered sets the bar for what remaster projects of old games should be in terms of looks, feel, performance and content.
Subsurface Circular presents a well-woven (albeit short), futuristic detective story full of interesting characters and thoughtful concepts. If you like a good mystery and are looking for a more relaxed, story focused experience, its hard to beat what's on offer here. Though light on action, Subsurface Circular has plenty of intrigue and confidently presents itself as an experience you've got little excuse to pass up.
The Deer God is an interesting, successful pairing of genres that is well presented and fun to play. What it lacks in-depth it makes up for in character, keeping the adventure light and enjoyable regardless of your experience as a gamer. Right at home on the Switch, it’s a great title to unwind with at the end of a workday, or to spend a full afternoon with on the couch.