Top Critic Average
Desert Child has interesting ambitions that never quite develop into an enjoyable experience
A low-fi hoverbike racer with oodles of charm and style, but not a lot under the hood.
Desert Child is built upon the promise of solid ideas that don’t quite come together. And sadly, they’re so deeply intertwined that a mistake in one aspect of the game critically injures the other part of the game.
Desert Child certainly won't be for everyone, but players who approach the game without expectations will be treated to a lighthearted and amusing experience that doesn't overstay its welcome.
At its best, Desert Child captures the feeling of working toward a big dream while struggling to even buy your next meal. Unfortunately, those moments come sandwiched between a lot of repetition as the initially fun races become a chore that you have to do over and over again. Desert Child's unique setting, filled out with great art and a killer soundtrack, is fun to explore for a while, but the game runs out of gas a little too quickly.
Desert Child is stylistically fantastic and has some of the more exciting racing gameplay we've seen this year, but it really suffers from its short length. There's an interesting, colourful world to explore in Olympia, but unfortunately things ends when it feels like Desert Child is just getting started. Still, it's an admirable effort from a talented one-man team.
Desert Child for the Nintendo Switch intends to be a simple, unpretentious racing game. Unfortunately, other than a pleasant art style and references to Cowboy Bebop, the gameplay on offer doesn't stand out or add anything remarkable compared to the existing catalogue. A rather dull experience, without a significant degree of challenge and very much unexplored by its development, Desert Child does not amount to a recommended racing game for the Nintendo Switch.
Review in Portuguese | Read full review
Desert Child is a confusing game and parsing whether it has deeper meanings that are unclear, or just non-existent, is exceedingly frustrating.
There was a lot of potential in Desert Child, but the slick presentation and amazing soundtrack only seem to mask what ends up being shallow gameplay. Racing feels good at first, but an entire game where that’s the only thing you do gets tiring pretty fast.
Desert Child has its moments, but most of the experience feels shallow. The repetitiveness of wandering through the town after each race was more of a distraction than anything. The retro-inspired pixel art is enjoyable, and most of the game's music works within the racing setting, but I had to mute the game when walking through the town.