Hello gentle readers, and welcome to the SwitchArcade Round-Up for July 5th, 2022. In today’s article, we begin with a couple of reviews to look at. The intriguing Gamedec from Anshar Studios and publisher Untold Tales is first up, and then we have a look at Freshly Frosted from The Quantum Astrophysicists Guild. There’s just one new release to look at today, but look we shall, and then we’ll swing around to the lists of new and expiring sales. Let’s get to work!
Reviews & Mini-Views
Gamedec bills itself as a single-player cyberpunk isometric RPG. And yes, if we’re to be very precise about the meanings of words, this is a role-playing game. But if you want to get into the right mind to enjoy Gamedec to its fullest, it’s probably better to think of it as an adventure game in the line of things like Ace Attorney Investigations. Get your case, gather your clues, talk to everyone, and make your conclusions. There are many roads to the end of each case depending on how you choose to investigate, which will be influenced by your character’s specific skills and stats.
The gimmick here is that your cases largely take place inside of video games. You’re the Game Detective, after all. It uses these settings to engage in social commentary on a variety of topics, many of which overlap with the game industry such as predatory monetization and game addiction. It doesn’t always do so in the most satisfying ways, but it hits the notes well enough most of the time. The cases are reasonably engaging even at the worst of times, making it very easy to keep on playing. The writing doesn’t quite have the kick found in some of the best games of the genre, but it’s good enough.
There’s no combat in the game. If you do the wrong thing at the wrong time, you can “die”, but you’ll just end up respawning. It’s a game, after all. You just have to look around each area, examine any hot spots, talk to people, and ask the right questions. You’ll get clues, and it’s up to you to piece them together to make the right conclusion. You can make the wrong ones, but you’ll muddle your way through one way or the other. As you play, you’ll earn various stat points based on what you do. Those points can be exchanged to progress through different professions, which can open up new dialogue choices and actions for you. It all flows along well enough, as long as you don’t look at everything too closely.
Should you decide to look closely, you’ll notice a lot of barely-covered cracks in the edifice. Sometimes your stat gains don’t line up with your choices. Sometimes the text slips up, addressing you as Mister when you are a Miss. Sometimes the dialog you choose produces unexpected results. Sometimes weird bugs pop up. Unintentional ones, I mean. Sometimes you wish the writing went a little deeper with its musings. The areas you explore often feel a little too much like sets. If you end up making some bad guesses, things may not click together very smoothly.
Despite all of that, Gamedec is a pretty good time. Just be willing to forgive some of the points where it falters in its ambitions, and you’ll find an enjoyable adventure game with a unique premise and some interesting ideas. Perhaps it could have explored those ideas more deeply or in a more satisfying manner, but even if doesn’t quite reach greatness, Gamedec is an adventure game worth checking out.
SwitchArcade Score: 3.5/5
Freshly Frosted ($9.99)
Take a decent puzzle concept, give it a cute theme and a shiny presentation, and it’s hard to go wrong. Oh no, I wrote the important part of the review in the first sentence. I’m supposed to drag that out and tease it a little, aren’t I? Oh well. Freshly Frosted is a really cool little game. You’re making donuts, because it’s chill to make donuts. Well, you’re not really making the donuts. Someone else is making them, you’re just building the lines to decorate them and serve them. You don’t have a lot of space to do it, and you need to hit the various decoration stations in the proper order. Things get really complicated when you need to make different types of donuts, because you can’t have the lines cross each other.
When you boil it down to its core, Freshly Frosted‘s gameplay isn’t so different from PathPix and games of that sort. It’s all about connecting lines within a confined space, but the presentation helps it feel like something more. It’s a very cozy game, and even as the puzzles get devilishly tricky, it’s all very calming thanks to its soothing use of colors and sound. You get twelve dozen stages all-up, which is a rather large number. If you get stuck on any of them, and you probably will now and then, you can get hints or even skip the puzzle. Challenging, but no pressure.
If you enjoy logic puzzles and don’t mind the fact that you’ll probably feel hungry after playing, Freshly Frosted is a wonderful game. It’s easy to pick up, ramps up its difficulty perfectly, offers tons of puzzles to test your skills, and has a fantastic sense of style to it. It’s an easy recommendation to anyone looking for something to tease their brain with.
SwitchArcade Score: 4.5/5
Yurukill: The Calumniation Games ($39.99)
Well, here’s a new one for you. It’s a visual novel game mashed up with a shoot-em-up. The story comes courtesy of Homura Kawamoto, best known for the manga Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler. Meanwhile, the shoot-em-up sections have been handled by the experienced hands at G.rev, whose past work includes Senko no Ronde, Border Down, and Under Defeat. You’re falsely accused of a crime and end up in Yurukill Land, a twisted theme park filled with killer attractions. Your only chance at freedom is to survive this deadly place. Despite the fact that some dedicated shooters lack them, this game actually has online leaderboards for the shoot-em-up parts. I’ll be reviewing this one soon.
(North American eShop, US Prices)
Not too much of note today, it seems. Curious Expedition 2 and some of its DLC are on sale, and you might want to consider it if you like quirky roguelites or simulation games. In the outbox, Ender Lilies and a number of Kairosoft games are wrapping up their latest discounts. Fans of adventure games will also want to grab Unavowed if they haven’t already. It’s very good.
Select New Games on Sale
Twin Blades of the Three Kingdoms ($11.99 from $14.99 until 7/12)
Curious Expedition 2 ($11.99 from $19.99 until 7/18)
Say No! More ($7.49 from $14.99 until 7/18)
Alpaca Ball: Allstars ($11.99 from $19.99 until 7/18)
Rattyvity Lab ($1.99 from $2.49 until 7/21)
FUZE4 Nintendo Switch ($9.99 from $19.99 until 7/25)
Sales Ending Tomorrow, Wednesday, July 6th
Basketball Club Story ($8.40 from $14.00 until 7/6)
Beastie Bay DX ($8.40 from $14.00 until 7/6)
Dream House Days DX ($8.40 from $14.00 until 7/6)
Ender Lilies: Quietus of the Knights ($17.49 from $24.99 until 7/6)
Hampuzz ($4.89 from $6.99 until 7/6)
Jade Order ($4.19 from $6.99 until 7/6)
Mega Mall Story ($7.00 from $14.00 until 7/6)
Mega Mall Story 2 ($8.40 from $14.00 until 7/6)
Primordia ($11.24 from $14.99 until 7/6)
Unavowed ($11.24 from $14.99 until 7/6)
Venture Towns ($7.00 from $14.00 until 7/6)
That’s all for today, friends. We’ll be back tomorrow with the usual Wednesday business. Some new games, some new sales, and perhaps a bit of news if luck serves us. Personally, I’m just sitting on my hands waiting for Klonoa to come out. Only two more days! I hope you all have a terrific Tuesday, and as always, thanks for reading!