Save Your Nuts
Switch version tested
Review code provided
Save Your Nuts lived up to its name. To some extent. Merely setting up a game drove me nuts with the intro music continually on repeat, designed to send the most tranquil person to a tirade of shouting at the TV and complaining ‘why does configuring a game take so much time to do?’ Selecting a character name meant inputting the details on what can only be described as a Nokia 3210 keyboard where you have to repeatedly press the button to cycle through a series of letters to choose from – some in lowercase, others uppercase because, y’know – it’s wacky.
Hopefully, the gameplay will save the day. Will it though? Not really. Believing that my first attempt playing Save Your Nuts caught me in a rare bad mood, I played it several more times but all with the same effect. It’s far too hectic, and none of the playable characters or game modes warrants a replay from this reviewer, unfortunately. As you may have seen in previous reviews, I’m a conscientious reviewer and understand that a lot of blood and tears go unto the development of a game. Still, as an end-user, I can’t endorse this as a game worth playing – and I endured Pooplers, so it’s not a question of patience.
So what’s Save Your Nuts about? It’s a group of animals battling it out in a variety of deathmatches and capture the flag, only swapping out the flag for nuts. On paper, the game sounds run-of-the-mill, but as an avid party gamer on the Switch, having a young family, I’m always open to this sort of game and in some respects, embrace it. The presentation of the game is good enough with a reasonable selection of characters to choose from as well as a few parameters to configure; i.e. local or online play and having the option to add or remove bots and adjust their difficulty.
However, even with easy bots (playing with the family is the excuse I’ll use), the games were over far too quickly as it’s difficult to see what’s going on. It’s not too clear who has the nut, or who’s doing what. As a result, we would continually lose the Capture the Nut mode and instead, went for the Battle Mode where it’s a last man standing (shouldn’t that be animal) affair. However, it’s mostly a button masher, and you can stand still and repeatedly press the button and wait for players to come to you.
There are ten stages to play on that are unlocked as you progress with the game. There isn’t a solo campaign as such, but through repeat plays, you get new environments to battle it out in. The actual levels are pretty good and have a good selection of environmental hazards and obstacles to use to your advantage. It’s just the movement of the characters that let it down a bit as characters jump across the screen hitting anything that moves, fumbling for a nut then losing it once more. The essence of the game mode, but it didn’t have the same level of enjoyment or satisfaction as its peers.
Of the available modes, there’s Capture The Nut, Battle Mode and Thieves. The first two are self-explanatory but the third features about five nuts that you have to return to your base, but the opposition can steal them and vice versa. Whoever gets them all, or has the most by the time the timer is up wins. This was probably the strongest of the options, and the game mode of choice for me as the first was too one-sided and the Battle Mode too easy. Other than the modes and level selections, each character, or species, has a skill and have access to in-game power-ups.
Bonuses include coffee for speed, or doughnuts for strength and these are scattered throughout each level, but the game scurries that you don’t get the opportunity to try them out. Instead, you can choose one of the many animals and play their strength to your advantage. There are the armadillos and their special rolling attack, or wolves that can jump high. There are even beavers that are good in the water but have slow digging speed.
Multiplayer games should be quick and addictive, but mostly fun – a bit like Go Vacation. Save Your Nuts isn’t terrible, but the fiddling about with inputting your character name every match through the phone keypad UI was frustrating. Then, having a game on the easy mode over in a time faster than it took to set up the game means that Save Your Nuts is a little too nutty for most to persevere with. The game has the potential, and the intro sequence sets the game up as being a fun experience, and while it can be depending on the company you share it with, it was just a little bit too on the hectic side for it to be on repeat play.
Perhaps aimed at a younger audience, Save Your Nuts runs the risk of alienating players with setting up a game then having it finish too quickly. Some of the modes are easier than others, and of course, there will be favourites, but overall, Save Your Nuts is a bit too crazy for this to be high on the recommended list.
Platform: Nintendo Switch, Windows, PlayStation, Xbox
Release Date: 16/04/2020
No. of Players: 1-8
Category: Action, Multiplayer, Party, Sports
Publisher: Triple Scale Games
Download link: eShop