Review – Stikbold! A Dodgeball Adventure Deluxe

Despite being a sport everybody has played in their childhood, dodgeball has never found the popularity it deserved in gaming. Sure, we did get one or two dodgeball games from the Kunyo-Kun franchise, but that was basically it. Stikbold is one of the few dodgeball games out there, and it manages to mix the simple but entertaining rules of the sport with a completely wacky plot and setting in order to create something truly unique. After being previously released on PS4, Xbox One and PC, it’s time for the Switch to receive its own port. Here’s Stikbold! A Dodgeball Adventure Deluxe for the Switch.


Two dodgeball players against a van. Seems like a fair fight

Stikbold‘s premise is pretty simple. It’s a wacky take on dodgeball with very loose rules. There isn’t a set arena for you to play at, as maps can range anywhere from a gym to a beach, and anyone can freely move through the entire map without an issue. The objective is to hit your foe twice within a small amount of time before he/she recovers his/her stamina. Do this to all your foes and you win the round; win a set amount of rounds and you win the game. Add the fact that the controls are ridiculously simple, as they are basically summarized as “throw ball” and “dodge thrown ball” (you’ll dodge a lot, like Bloodborne levels of “lot”), and you have a game anyone can learn how to play in mere minutes. That’s easily the best aspect about Stikbold: it knows it’s a multiplayer-focused party game, and it makes sure anyone can play it with little to no help from other people. The only truly disappointing aspect about its focus on multiplayer is that, weirdly enough, there’s no online support. It’s all local, and while it makes up by having tons of different modes and support for lots of players at a time, I can’t help but feel that the lack of online multiplayer is a wasted opportunity.

Besides its myriad of multiplayer modes, the game boasts an actually impressive single-player story mode. Backed by a completely insane plot and funny voice acting (I honestly don’t know if it’s just gibberish or an actual Nordic language, I’m really sorry for my ignorance!), Stikbold‘s story mode was a hilarious experience. You’ll fight anything from bikers on a beach to a hippy van that throws beehives at you. Everything, from the actual gameplay to the cutscenes, is presented in a very blocky and Minecraft-ish aesthetic that can best be described as “hit-or-miss.” Some people will find the entire art style endearing, as it does improve the game’s humorous vibe, other people will find the game’s visuals severely simplistic.


Nothing like a relaxing ball game in hell

Despite the silly visuals and complete lack of online multiplayer, Stikbold turned out to be a very funny and entertaining party game, yet another great addition to the already immense roster of good party games for the Switch. Want to relive the most painful memories of playing dodgeball in third grade? This game is for you.

Graphics: 6.5

The Minecraft inspired art style might be a bit generic nowadays, but the game does boast plenty of visual charm.

Gameplay: 9.0

With a very simple and responsive control scheme that uses very few buttons, anyone can learn how to play Stikbold quickly.

Sound: 7.0

The soundtrack is alright at its best, but weirdly enough, the “voice acting” is actually quite endearing.

Fun Factor: 7.5

While Stikbold’s local multiplayer is a blast, its funny campaign takes the cake. Sadly, there’s no online multiplayer.

Final Verdict: 7.5

Reviewed on Switch.
Also available on: PS4, Xbox One, PC.

Copy of Stikbold! A Dodgeball Adventure Deluxe provided by publisher.