New Game Review

Review – Red’s Kingdom (Switch)

Get some nuts!

I’d normally complain about the increasing amount of iOS ports to the Nintendo Switch, but this case is different. I’m going to talk about Red’s Kingdom, a neat little game that tries to improve on a very simple puzzler aesthetic by offering a story, a nice overworld, and a huge amount of collectibles.

red3
What the heck are you supposed to be, Red?

The premise is simple: you take control of a… well, what the heck is Red supposed to be? A squirrel? A fox? A mutant? Anyway, you take control of a creature, whose entire nut collection, as well as beloved dad, is stolen by the kingdom’s resident bad guy of the week. Your task is to traverse the medieval-esque kingdom in search of every single nut you come across. Oh, if you manage to rescue your pop at the end of the day, that’s also cool, I guess…

Despite the setting, plot, and overall aesthetic being similar to an adventure game, Red’s Kingdom is actually a very simplistic puzzler. The best way I can describe its gameplay is linking it to a specific section that shows up in pretty much every single Pokémon game post Gen II. Remember those ice floor sections in which you keep sliding until you reach the exit, without being able to properly stop until hitting a wall or a block? That’s Red’s Kingdom in a nut (tee hee hee) shell. The difference, this time around, is that the entire perspective is isometric, and that leads to what I considered the game’s main issue.

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REALLY subtle.

Controlling Red is a mixed bag; it can either be really responsive or really confusing, all depending on how you decide to play the game. Controlling Red with the analog stick is extremely confusing due to the game’s isometric perspective, while using the touchscreen to drag the little freak around is a lot more responsive and intuitive. Then again, this makes the game almost exclusively recommended for portable play.

Thankfully, that’s the best way to play Red’s Kingdom anyway, due to the game’s repetitive nature. Yes, the environments are neat, the soundtrack is a lot better than anticipated, the Banjo-Kazooie-esque “voice acting” (if you can call that voice acting) is adorable, and there are lots of areas to explore, but at the end of the day, this is just a sliding puzzle. There’s not a lot of variety here to keep you entertained for a long time.

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One day, Red learned how to walk diagonally. He has never arrived late for a date ever since.

Far from being a complex game, but still a lot deeper than its simplistic gameplay makes it look like, Red’s Kingdom is a neat evolution of the sliding puzzle genre, adding some simplistic combat and a cute story to the mix. Despite its improvements, the game is still, at its core, a simplistic puzzle and it does get repetitive after a while. It’s best appreciated in small doses.

Graphics: 7.5

The art style is downright adorable. The environments are also varied.

Gameplay: 6.5

The game’s isometric perspective makes the gameplay a tad too confusing when playing with a proper controller. Just stick to the touchscreen controls.

Sound: 7.5

The soundtrack can be repetitive at times, but the tunes are decent enough not to tire you that quickly. The “voice acting” (if you can call that) is cute and not very irritating.

Fun Factor: 7.0

It adds some storytelling elements to a somewhat simplistic puzzle genre, making the game stand out from its peers. It’s still a simple puzzler at the end of the day, and it can get repetitive after a while.

Final Verdict: 7.0

Red’s Knigdom is available now on Switch.

A copy of Red’s Kingdom was provided by the publisher.

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About Leo Faria

Founder and mastermind behind Way Too Many Games, hailing from the southern swag that is São Paulo, a Sega widower who considers the Dreamcast to be the greatest console ever released, the greatest Guitar Hero and Tetris player you’ll ever meet. My favorite games include Perfect Dark, Banjo-Tooie, the Guitar Hero series, Bioshock Infinite and Star Wars Rogue Squadron II. I also own an Ouya. Never turned it on.

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