Hello gentle readers, and welcome to the SwitchArcade Round-Up for August 12th, 2019. Today is a holiday in Japan, and indeed many people are off for the whole week. Not this guy, though. I’m here to deliver you all the hottest news, all the great new releases, all the… what? There aren’t any new releases? Almost no news? Hunh. Well, I’ve got three reviews for you to enjoy, and of course all of the usual sales stuff. I guess we’ll have to make do with what we’ve got. Let’s go!
‘Pinball’ and ‘Water Ski’ Will Join the Arcade Archives Line-Up
With a release virtually each and every week, the Arcade Archives from Hamster is in a near-perpetual state of having new titles revealed. Normally I don’t cover these because there are so many of them and the games tend to come out pretty quickly, but it’s a slow day, so here we are. The latest confirmations came via a Famitsu livestream that was held in the middle of last week. Nintendo’s Pinball and Taito’s Water Ski will be released on the Switch at some point in the relatively near future. No specific dates were given, unfortunately. Neither of these titles are what you would call barn-burners, but they’re fun enough in short bursts.
Subdivision Infinity DX ($14.99)
Space games really do run the gamut in terms of complexity. It’s one of the earliest themes video games explored, though early efforts weren’t much more than simple shooting galleries. In a sense, that’s mainly what Subdivision Infinity DX is, too. There are lot of other little bits and bobs attached to it, but the main business is in shooting things of various shapes and sizes. All the gravity-free thrills of interstellar dogfighting, and very little of the administrative work that goes into some games of that sort. I enjoyed the game quite a bit in its mobile form, and I still generally like it here. I’m not sure if the improvements quite make up for the price being three times higher, but it is what it is.
You play as a pilot who ends up in over his head after investigating a distress signal. You end up with a smart-aleck robot sidekick, and things keep on escalating as the game works its way through the 30 or so main story missions. But you’ll probably check out on the actual plot early on. It’s not very interesting. What is interesting is going into space and shooting hostile baddies. That’s what you’ll be doing, by and large, with the occasional diversion into space-mining and space-exploring. You’ll earn resources and materials that can be rolled into new weapons, upgrades, and even new ships.
The combat is a lot of fun, and being able to play with buttons makes it that much easier. This is where the game shines its brightest, as twisting and turning around in space and picking off the overwhelming number of enemies gunning for you just feels great. Your skill can certainly overcome some wild odds, but eventually you’re going to need to upgrade your ship, and that’s where things go a little off the rails. The amount of resources you have coming in don’t quite match up to your needs, so you’ll have to spend some time grinding on the side missions. Those side missions are the least fun part of the game, so having to repeat them to get your equipment up to snuff for the bits that are fun to play is kind of exhausting.
Unfortunately, this DX version doesn’t offer much more than upgraded visuals, and even that’s fairly meager. If you’re looking for substantial new content or a serious re-balancing to smooth out the difficulty spikes, you won’t find that here. This is largely the same game that the mobile original was, with all the good and bad that implies. It’s a shame because what felt like a deal at five dollars feels a little thin for fifteen. Most people will reach the end within five or six hours of play, and there isn’t a whole lot of replay value here.
If you’re just looking for some cheap space shooting thrills, Subdivision Infinity DX will definitely scratch the itch well. It’s a nice-looking game with good controls that really gives you a strong feeling of battling in space. There’s a bit of less-exciting grinding that you’ll have to occasionally engage in if you want to keep up with the rising difficulty or simply want to enjoy all of the available ships and weapons, and the lack of extra missions over the mobile original means the party ends a little earlier than you might hope. Still, it’s a solid game that suits the big-screen play and portability of the Switch in equal measures.
SwitchArcade Score: 3.5/5
Taimumari: Complete Edition ($14.99)
Taimumari: Complete Edition includes two games in one package. The first game is the main one, Taimumari. It’s a side-scrolling action-platformer designed to appeal to fans of classic games. The second is Legend of Himari, and although it’s really more of a mini-game than anything, it’s pretty fun on its own. It’s basically a straight…