Review – Jet Kave Adventure

A caveman is casually living his life, minding his own primal business, when suddenly he discovers a crashed alien ship. Said ship’s pilot needs to fix it by harnessing a special stone located inside a nearby volcano, which will most likely erupt and kill everyone around it. It’s up to the caveman and his newly acquired jetpack to venture through dozens of levels, defeat various types of animals, dinosaurs and disgruntled cavemen, and stop the alien before it’s too late. That premise sounds like the crazy crap my eight year old mind would have come up with back in the day, but that’s basically the plot for 7Levels’ brand new Switch exclusive, Jet Kave Adventure.

2019091215454800-A1114F3BF139CE160E6F8A4131394BFC

Cavemen invented the wheel, but they clearly didn’t invent the concept of stealth.

When I found out that Jet Kave Adventure was being developed by 7Levels, I started feeling a bit skeptical. This company is responsible for the very underwhelming Castle of Heart, another 2.5D platformer exclusive to the Switch. A game that featured one of the most excruciating input lags on the system to date. I think 7Levels took the criticism very seriously, because if there’s one thing that they have managed to improve upon from one game to the other, that has to be the gameplay.

Now, Jet Kave Adventure isn’t a complex platformer. It’s clearly inspired by Donkey Kong Country when it comes to its physics and momentum-based gameplay. The developers want you to move at all times, either by using your jetpack, jumping, rolling, or just running to the right constantly. With the exception of the inclusion of the jetpack, which allows you to hover, dash, and break some barriers, it’s the same gameplay you’d find in a classic Donkey Kong Country game. With that said, the controls are very tight this time around. The responsiveness has dramatically increased and the platforming is very precise. In no moment did I feel like my deaths were the result of input lag or a glitch, even in the annoying autoscrolling chase levels.

2019091416464800-A1114F3BF139CE160E6F8A4131394BFC

Imagine Donkey Kong Country, but with a jetpack.

The game tries to spice things up every now and then with some different gameplay segments in a few levels. These segments are inspired by horizontal and vertical-scrolling shoot-em-ups, as well as a few boss fights, but in the end the gameplay is pretty safe and straightforward. It’s Donkey Kong Country with a jetpack. The one thing that motivated me to go on, and even replay a few levels, was the fact that you can upgrade your health bar, ammo pouch, and so on, by spending seashells (this game’s currency) at a store in the main menu. There are also some very well-hidden trophies scattered throughout the levels.

When it comes to its artistic department, Jet Kave Adventure is an improvement over Castle of Heart, but only marginally. I mentioned that Castle of Heart looks like a subpar Gamecube game with the performance of an inferior mobile title. Jet Kave Adventure‘s visuals are more detailed and the performance is a lot more stable, but you’ve clearly seen much prettier polygonal games on the Switch at this point. At the very least, it runs well enough for slowdowns to be virtually nonexistent. I can’t praise the sound department, though. It’s not bad per se, but it’s very bland and forgettable.

2019091217301700-A1114F3BF139CE160E6F8A4131394BFC

Where’s a mouse when you need one?

All in all, Jet Kave Adventure succeeds at what it wants to do, but it doesn’t do a lot more than that. It’s a simple and straightforward 2.5D platformer, clearly inspired by Donkey Kong Country, that can entertain players for some time with its momentum-based gameplay and handful of collectibles. It’s not jaw-dropping, it’s not visually impressive, nor does its soundtrack hit the right notes, but I still had quite a bit of fun with it. I was expecting it to be yabba-dabba-dull, but it ended up being yabba-dabba-decent.

 

Graphics: 6.0

The visuals aren’t exactly detailed or groundbreaking, but they contain enough charm for you to ignore these issues. The framerate is also very stable.

Gameplay: 9.0

Without a doubt, Jet Kave Adventure‘s highlight. Easy to learn, precise, and very responsive.

Sound: 5.5

Although the soundtrack isn’t bad, I can’t say it was memorable either. It gets the job done by providing players with some tribal-inspired tunes, but you’ll quickly forget about them once you turn the console off.

Fun Factor: 6.0

Jet Kave Adventure isn’t amazing, but it’s not bad either. It’s a simple title inspired by Donkey Kong Country that can entertain players for a while with its momentum-based gameplay and secret collectibles.

Final Verdict: 6.5

Jet Kave Adventure is available now on Switch.

Reviewed on Switch.

A copy of Jet Kave Adventure was provided by the publisher.