Super Box Land Demake
Switch version tested
Review code provided
Super Box Demake tasks you with pushing boxes around a level either solo or co-op with a friend. The boxes must be pushed onto switches in order to open a gate and progress to the next level and so on until you have worked your way through all one hundred levels on offer. This task sounds simple but as the levels become more complex there will be an element of head-scratching involved in order to be successful.
As with similar puzzle games, it can become frustrating when you think you have cracked a level only to realise you have cocked a move up at the last moment. Fortunately, there is a rewind feature on offer so you can correct any mistakes along the way. If this sounds like too much hand-holding for puzzle purists then have no fear, a range of difficulty options are available that adjust how many rewinds you can use as well as the overall difficulty of the puzzles and for the hardcore among you there is even an option to set a speedrun timer.
Though any form of narrative is absent from game there are several different worlds to travel through. These are broken up by traveling to them via a top-down shoot em up which does a nice job of changing the pace of the experience but doesn’t avoid feeling out of place. When I first encountered one I thought the game may be pulling a switcharoo and would, in fact, have several different game styles but it was not to be.
As far as controls there is little to gripe about. Movement is assigned to the left analogue, holding B allows you to push the boxes, Y provided a handy sprint which will be invaluable for those looking to do speed runs. Holding A activated the rewind feature and X would activate an additional player. As mentioned before this drop-in will allow for two players to complete levels in co-op or one player to control two characters if they prefer. The one issue I found was if you press X twice the game would expect you to take the Joy-cons out and play co-op without the option to go back if you activated it by mistake.
Retro themed games are nothing new to the market but Super Box Demake does a good job with its presentation. The 8-Bit graphic style stands out nicely on Nintendo Switch and I imagine it would be the same for Vita, PS4 and Xbox. The various worlds all stand out nicely from each other and even include weather effects which add nothing to the gameplay but it’s a nice touch to add some variation. The music is repetitive but charming in its own right and didn’t become annoying.
Though I would say the experience lends itself more to the handheld market due to the quick burst vibe of the levels the PS4 and Xbox versions will likely benefit from a quick Platinum or Thousand G inclusion and given it only took just over an hour to get through on my first playthrough I can’t deny the score hunters among us are the target audience.
Super Box Land Demake is a pleasant puzzler that doesn’t outstay its welcome and is another feather in the cap of Ratalaika Games. If you need something to chip away at on lunch breaks or bus journeys then the Switch and Vita versions are worth considering but with a low price and the aforementioned potential for easy gamerscore, the appeal mainly lends itself to the score hunters of the gaming world. If you are looking for a deeper puzzle experience then there are better options out there.
TBG Score: 6.5/10
Platform: Nintendo Switch, PS4, PSVita, Xbox One
Release Date: 11/10/2019
No. of Players: 1-2
Category: Puzzle, Arcade
Publisher: Ratalaika Games
Download link: eShop