Legend of the Skyfish
Switch version tested
Review code provided
Ratalaika delves into the mobile back catalogue to bring Mgaia Studio’s Zelda influenced adventure to the Nintendo Switch as well as all current-gen consoles. Legend of the Skyfish is a stunning hand-drawn action puzzler with a neat USP that revolves around using a fishing pole and grappling hook combo.
Our story follows heroine Little Red Hook on an epic quest to defeat the legendary Skyfish. Guided by the Moonwhale she must tackle 45 lovingly crafted levels that offer pure gameplay and an ever-increasing challenge as new mechanics are introduced. There is an overworld map that joins together each of the segments animated by Red riding Moon to the next location, ultimately it serves no real purpose but it is touches like this that complete the package.
The premise behind each of the stages is simple, guide Red to the end goal and beat the totem into submission. As you advance new elements are thrown at you, the initial stages guide you into how and the latter get you thinking. Playing Legend of the Skyfish is a pure delight with everything created for a purpose. Red soon encounters a menagerie of enemies that would love nothing more than to see her demise but with a quick swipe of the rod they are felled. With this in place, it then throws locked gates and spiked floors into the equation to get that puzzler inside thinking, moves become strategic and almost rhythmic. The hook shot becomes your most powerful ally when there is a need to fly from one island piece or moving raft to another. Although the difficulty naturally increases at no point does the game become a chore and most will see the end without the need to use a extra life.
Born from a mobile platform each area can be finished within a few minutes and that is why it was especially an inspired choice to bring it to the Switch. Legend of the Skyfish can be played in small chunks which makes it the ideal candidate for on the go play. To add depth there is a basic upgrade system employed revolving around three key powers. Locate and collect new coats, rods and lines which can be combined at the start of a level and give a little status boost. Whether that be an additional heart container, longer offensive reach, slow motion upon hit all help.
At the end of each world you are treated to a boss fight, these tend to be larger than life characters that fill the screen. They have simple attack patterns that once sussed can be brushed aside with ease. As mentioned in the first paragraph there are some heavy influences from classics such as Zelda, the hook shot, the fairy-like fly creature that follows you all the way down to how Skyfish plays. It’s not a bad thing when the inspiration has already set such a high bar.
The visual of the game is an inequitable delight with a hand-drawn style that looks like it has been ripped straight out of a children’s storybook. Testing both handheld and docked mode the game looks gorgeous with rich and vibrant colours. The accompanying soundtrack is subtle yet memorable that compliments the visual pleasing the senses.
Legend of the Skyfish is an excellent way to pass a few hours whatever format you are lucky enough to play on. The price point is spot on and if you want an enchanting experience this is definitely worth a look. The visual and audio are perfectly balanced to help give a well-rounded experience. It’s short and has little reason to replay but one that will somehow draw you back from time to time.
TBG Score: 8/10
Platform: Steam, PlayNintendo Switch
Release Date: 30/08/2019
No. of Players: 1
Category: Adventure, Puzzle
Developer: Mgaia Studio
Publisher: Ratalaika Games
Download link: eShop