(Wii U eShop)

Game Review

Mighty Switch Force: Hyper Drive Edition Review

USA USA Version

Posted by Joe Walker

Arresting development

When Mighty Switch Force was released for the 3DS eShop it was quickly heralded as not only one of the service’s best games but also one of the best games on the stereoscopic handheld period. Faultless controls, addictive puzzle platforming and a healthy dose of WayForward’s trademark charm made it shine, and now with the release of the Wii U there's a chance it'll win over an entirely new audience with Mighty Switch Force: Hyper Drive Edition.

The game is basically the same as the portable version: you play as robocop Patricia Wagon and have to track down the Hooligan Sisters as fast as you can through a variety of stages. The only moves in Patricia’s repertoire are jumping, shooting, and switching blocks, which forms the core of the puzzle-themed adventure. With a flash of her helmet-mounted siren, Patricia swaps blocks between the foreground and background, allowing her access to different parts of the levels.

There are 16 stages from the original game with five bonus extras, but completing them unlocks Hyper editions of each stage. While 21 levels that are designed to be beaten in a couple of minutes each seems like a paltry offering, each stage has a par time that you’ll need plenty of practice to come in under. You might feel pretty good about yourself after clearing a stage in three minutes, but with the par time of a minute and a half staring at you it won’t really feel like you’ve completed a level until you've shaved off a lot of that excess time.

While the block-switching mechanic was a great way to show off the 3DS’ chops, with so many things popping in and out of the foreground, the big pull of the Wii U version is the HD visuals. WayForward has earned a reputation for their gorgeous 2D art and it really shines on Nintendo’s newest console. Character sprites are large, their colour and detail bursting off of your TV screen. Despite the game being a race against the clock, you might find yourself stopping from time to time to just stare at the characters and their idle animations.

The game supports off-TV play, perfect for when you want to test your brain while someone else watches TV. When playing on the big screen the GamePad displays the radar that was on the bottom screen in the 3DS version. The TV has arrows pointing you to the nearest Hooligan Sister, though, so you won't be using it much.

The only thing missing from Hyper Drive Edition is some kind of online leaderboard. For a game built around beating levels as fast as possible, a way to see the times of the best players would have put it over the top. You can post your times to Miiverse, of course, as people have been doing, but having it built into the game would have been phenomenal. It’s more of a nitpicky complaint than anything, but with a game as incredible as this it’s hard to find anything wrong.

Conclusion

Mighty Switch Force: Hyper Drive Edition is just as fantastic as its 3DS predecessor. The controls are flawless, the graphics amazing, the music some of the best we’ve heard in any video game. It all really comes down to which D you prefer, 3D or HD. The Wii U’s graphical muscle is the perfect partner for WayForward’s art gods, so even if you’ve already had your fill of the original there’s some pretty big incentive to double dip.

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User Comments (42)

Smitherenez

#3

Smitherenez said:

How difficult are the hyper stages? You didn't really discuss how they stack up against the normal levels. Also, as a fan of the 3DS version, I would like to know if it's worth picking up again.

rayword45

#4

rayword45 said:

What else expected from the Mighty series?

Will probably get this if I get a Wii U.

chewytapeworm

#5

chewytapeworm said:

One of the best games to be released on 3ds. Agreed, need more info on the hyper levels before I even consider <ahem> double dipping...

CaramelK

#6

CaramelK said:

The only thing I don't like are the character style and animations. They looked better on the 3DS. On the WiiU looks like...flash or something...

Hokori

#9

Hokori said:

I hate when companies add HD or 3D at the end of a title to sell it...
I hope Nintendo stops with the adding of 3D and doesn't end up making HD games...

Kid_A

#11

Kid_A said:

Honestly, I don't understand the intense love for this game. It's got a horrendously boring art style and lifeless controls. It felt like a step back after Mighty Milky Way, which was so visually unique and played like nothing before it.

Switch Force isn't a bad game, certainly, but there are about a dozen more interesting indie action-puzzlers I'd rather play.

SheldonRandoms

#13

SheldonRandoms said:

Ditto, I need to know more about the hyper levels if I should get this again, also, SWITCH IT UP, IN GLORIOUS 1080P HD!!!!!!

Grodus

#15

Grodus said:

Never actually got the 3DS version, so it's either get 21 levels +Hyper mode, or 15 levels and that's it. This is a very hard choice.

Tsuchiya

#18

Tsuchiya said:

@Prof_Clayton
I assume he means the inclusion of HD in the name. Similar to the addition of 64 after the title name. If not, please step this way. We will "correct" you ;)

Retro_on_theGo

#19

Retro_on_theGo said:

@Kid_A WHOA! Dude, I think this is the first time I've completely disagreed with you. Boring art style? No way. It's love able and a tough kind of cute. Patricia Wagon is totally Wayforward's best Nintendo online shop character.

Glad to see this is as good as the original. Maybe I'll double dip one day. Is the music remixed or is it the same as the 3DS game?

Hokori

#20

Hokori said:

@Tsuchiya Well 64 was different though, at least they didn't make a game like A link to the past 64, I hate remakes with 3D or HD at the end... Makes it seem like there doing that for more $$$ because HD versions obviously better

Bacon_Gal_Blaze

#24

Bacon_Gal_Blaze said:

Interesting, I'm still looking to pick up the 3DS one at some point. Heard it's kinda short though. ›_›

Taceus

#26

Taceus said:

Bugger it. Gonna have to double dip. Loved the 3DS version. Just wanna hear that soundtrack blasting through my home on bigger speakers.

Henmii

#28

Henmii said:

"comes down to which D you prefer, 3D or HD"

I prefer double D (sorry, I couldn't help myself)!
Anyway: Fun for people who haven't played it before. I have the original though, so I'll pass.

BenAV

#30

BenAV said:

I'll definitely be buying it straight away despite already playing it.
Best 3DS eShop game so far in my opinion.

Hokori

#32

Hokori said:

@Tsuchiya But the difference between the Super, 64, and DS is that they arnt using those to say it has better graphics
SUPER Metroid isn't just Metroid in 16-bit
Super Mario 64 isn't a 64-bit version of a game called Super Mario
And DS wasn't used for the sake of graphics Yoshis island DS wasn't the original with DS (if DS could be a form of graphics...)

WolfRamHeart

#33

WolfRamHeart said:

Great review Joe. Even though I already own the 3DS version I am still planning on buying this game on the Wii U. The Wii U seems to be off to a good start with this lineup of downloadable games. I hope that Nintendo can keep these quality titles coming to eShop.

MAB

#34

MAB said:

Hmmm! I might wait for the SUPER MEGA 64 DS HD 3D edition that everyone keeps bangin' on about :P

LEGEND_MARIOID

#35

LEGEND_MARIOID said:

If reasonably priced in EU, I might DL it to s'port the service. It's basically the same game as the fantastic 3DS one minus the hyper levels then?

FonistofCruxis

#36

FonistofCruxis said:

@MadAussieBloke Lol, nice one.
That's some beautiful spritework! I'm having a really hard time deciding whether to get the 3DSware version or this version once I've got a Wii U. The 3DSware version seems to make some of the best use of the systems stereoscopic 3D but the HD visuals in this version look lovely

WindWakerLink

#38

WindWakerLink said:

Hmm. I guess this game will be my 1st eshop purchase for my wii u after reading this review. glad I didn't get it for the 3DS then. 'Heh heh...'

Dpishere

#42

Dpishere said:

I have yet to pick up the 3ds version of this title, but at the looks of this version I will likely wait and get this whenever I do get a Wii U.

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