Come fly with me
Developer and publisher Northplay switch busy railway tracks and head to the sky for their latest release on Nintendo Switch this April. The aptly named Fly TOGETHER! follows in the footsteps of award-winning Conduct TOGETHER! with vibrant visuals and puzzle-based gameplay as you schedule flights and pick up sun-seekers looking for the perfect getaway.
The title shares a number of similarities with their previous effort and the 2009 mobile hit – Flight Control – by developer Firemint, which was later ported to several platforms including the Nintendo DS and Wii. The premise is simple. Claim the number one spot in air traffic control management by ensuring all passengers arrive safely at their given destination within a set time limit. Draw, adjust and manage flight paths while attempting to avoid all other aircraft. The key to success is in forward planning, what starts out as a fun and relaxing experience soon becomes increasingly challenging as the skies become congested.
Make my way back home when I learn to fly
Fly TOGETHER! features a comprehensive campaign that introduces new gameplay elements and unlockable features through a well-crafted progression system. Successful journeys are rewarded with gold coins and unlocks help expand your airport and craft selection, each with unique stats that will come in useful depending on the requirements of each level. The game is suited to quick pick up and play sessions, each round won’t take too long to finish but there’s plenty of content to keep you playing.
The campaign can be enjoyed solo or with friends in co-op, using a split Joy-Con taking advantage of motion or standard stick controls. Motion controls are reminiscent of the experience using a Wiimote and can be picked up with relative ease, although not always the most accurate option. Players can drop in and out on an ad-hoc basis, which is a great move by the developers.
To complement the campaign Fly TOGETHER! also includes a battle mode, for up to 8 players, in a head to head race to be crowned champion. Multiplayer is delightful and a much-welcomed inclusion, one that results in many unpredictable and often hilarious scenarios. I enrolled the help of my 7-year-old for the purpose of ensuring we fully tested the game’s appeal and the outcome often left us scratching our heads as to what went wrong – teamwork was not our forte initially but we managed to find a rhythm after a few test flights. We both had a lot of fun playing this title.
Visually Fly TOGETHER! is bright and clean with a beautiful low-poly art style that fits perfectly with the ethos of the game. Each area is themed and offered a level of contrast to playtime. There were no noticeable performance issues and the game looked crisp when played in docked or handheld mode. One of the biggest issues with Fly TOGETHER! is that the screen becomes overcrowded but that is part and parcel with the design and mechanics in play and never detracted from the enjoyment had – it just demanded a little more concentration than I have nowadays. From the moment the game boots into the opening cinematic you treated to the fantastic soundtrack, composed by Mikkel Gemzøe, which really ties together the complete package and emphasises the feeling of fun that the title aims to provide. Everything works together well and shows that the development team had a blast making this title, even if it’s not the most original offering out there.
With Fly TOGETHER! Northplay builds on the solid foundations set out in their previous titles. A simple gameplay mechanic that is easy to pick up but difficult to master and offers rewards is key to keeping you invested and Fly TOGETHER! succeeds in this. Multiplayer is where this game really shines and while akin to a mobile title, the Nintendo Switchs’ versatility makes Fly TOGETHER! a great addition to anyone’s collection.
Review code provided
Release Date: 29/04/2021
No. of Players: 1-8
Category: Puzzle, Action, Multiplayer, Party
Download link: US eShop / UK eShop