Switch version tested
Review code provided
At this point we are all far too familiar with labelling any difficult video game as, “(insert game title) is The Dark Souls of (insert game genre).” So Green Dinosaur Games has decided to cut out the middleman and just release Duck Souls+ and one could say that ” Duck Souls+ is The Dark Souls of Platformers.” However, is that enough or has this been done to death of late?
Super Meat Boy has done this type of game to near perfection already and many other games have tried to recapture Super Meat Boy since. Really, by now the only way to get a game truly praised in this genre is to innovate at least one aspect of story, gameplay, visuals, audio etc. Well to get right to the point Duck Souls+ does not offer anything fresh or creative to the ever-growing library of arcade platformers on the Nintendo Switch.
The player takes control of a duck that is trying to save an egg. The duck must traverse 100 levels and 20 different types of traps/obstacles. Each level is short and just one screen, but there are still challenges to overcome in nearly all levels. No story is provided, just to make you aware. Players can select from two difficulty levels (casual or hard) and the main difference is casual has checkpoints in levels and hard does not. It would seem the optimal way to play this title is on hard because if you get stuck you can always change to casual for the level, then back to hard for the next level.
The controls work fairly well for the most part. I do not find them to get wholly up to snuff for the type of game Duck Souls+ is but they are good enough to get through the game. Duck has a single jump, a wall jump and a directional aerial boost. The weakest part of the controls is the boosts as the player can only go in one stiff/hard direction or straight line that cannot be adjusted once performed.
Visually, the game takes a generic 8-bit route and it is basic. I do not think the game looks bad at all just I feel like I have seen this type of aesthetics for this game genre too many times now. I enjoyed the colour choices for the environments though.
The audio is pretty disappointing compared to my expectations of what is provided. Given the graphics and gameplay style I thought the music would be more upbeat/electronic/techno but it was oddly calm. The sound effect for the bullets was overbearing on all the other game sounds when they were present on levels. Once again these are not necessarily bad things but felt like wrong directions taken to make the game stand out.
In the end, Duck Souls+ is overly generic and falls into the “dime a dozen” bin for my taste. The game is not expensive, yet hardly provides much reason to spend the $4.99/£4.99 on it. The Nintendo eShop has a surplus of superior games worth your hard-earned money.
TBG Score: 5/10
Platform: PC, Xbox, PlayStation, Nintendo Switch
Release Date: 27/03/2020
No. of Players: 1
File Size: 54 MB
Category: Platformer, Arcade
Developer: Green Dinosaur Games
Publisher: Ratalaika Games
Download link: eShop