Sports Story Reviews
Even if Sports Story was polished and bug-free, it would still fall strikingly short of the first title in the series. The new sports don’t play well, the fetch quests are tiresome, and the story is tedious and less charming than that of Golf Story. What remains of the retro golf experience is fun, but the whole game feels like a textbook example of being unable to deliver on lofty ambitions.
Though golfing remains a highlight, Sports Story overloads its charming and intriguing premise with unrewarding side activities and boring fetch quests.
Sports Story is a huge disappointment, with a ton of technical issues, a lack of tutorials and unenjoyable new sports making it one to avoid.
The long-awaited follow-up to Golf Story is rough but characterful, with plenty of retro warmth
Sports Story pales in comparison to its predecessor. The plot fails to capture the whimsy which engulfs the original. While I understand Sidebar Games’ decision to go large with its narrative, in doing so, it removes the simplicity which makes Golf Story so unforgettable. Although it expands its gameplay with a number of new sporting activities, the success of these varies. Combining this with the volume of performance issues and bugs means this swing is a whiff rather than a hit.
Compared to the unexpected highlight that was Golf Story, Sports Story is damningly mediocre. Although the writing is as good as ever and the visuals have received a nice upgrade, the performance issues, tedious fetch quests, and occasionally confusing gameplay all hold this one back quite a bit. Despite its shortcomings, there's certainly still an enjoyable game on offer here, but you'll have to decide for yourself whether it's worth the negatives, especially given that the Switch eShop is lousy with great games these days. If you loved the original, you'll likely find Sports Story to be a fun-enough follow-up, but there's no denying that it feels like quite a letdown after years of waiting. Assuming Sidebar can sort out the worst of the technical issues, we'd give Sports Story a light recommendation to anyone looking for a quirky take on a sports RPG, but this one doesn't deserve a spot at the top of your list.
Sequels that don't quite match the lightning-in-a-bottle status of its originator are nothing new.
Sports Story doesn't hit the heights of its predecessor, overstuffed with new ideas and sports that probably should have been left on the cutting-room floor. There's still plenty here to enjoy, both golf and tennis fans will find something to like and fans of the original likewise, but the trophy could have used a polish.
There was clearly a vision for Sports Story, but overextending to include too many sports and a buggy launch means you should wait to play it.
It was always going to be tough to follow-up Golf Story in an interesting manner, and one certainly can’t say there was a lack of ambition in what Sidebar Games was trying to achieve in Sports Story. However, fulfilling that ambition is another matter entirely, and ultimately the game leaves a sense of what could have been.