If you pride yourself on keeping your ear to the ground when it comes to the hottest indie games, there's a good chance you've heard of Andrew Shouldice's Tunic; this excellent Zelda-like adventure game has been in development for many years and recently launched on Xbox Series X/S to rave reviews.
Shouldice has made no secret of the fact that he's a huge fan of Zelda, and the game takes this adoration to the next level by including a truly authentic NES-style digital instruction manual, which you can reconstruct in-game as you find more pages.
Speaking to Pure Xbox, Shouldice explained:
When I was very little, I loved poring over game manuals — or “Instructions Booklets” as they sometimes called themselves. I still love reading them today of course, but back then, they were very mysterious objects. I remember being at my next door neighbour's house while they were playing Metroid 2 on the Game Boy. That screen didn’t really allow for comfortable over-the-shoulder viewing, so I had to content myself with leafing through the booklet.
We’ve tried to evoke those same feelings of wonder in Tunic. As you play, you’ll collect pages of the game’s manual, which you can bring up at any time. They’re not just collectables though — just like those old manuals, the pages are full of maps, secrets, and important tips.
Our pals over at Pure Xbox reviewed Tunic recently, giving it a glowing 9/10 score and saying:
Tunic is a fantastically clever adventure that kicks off in familiar Zelda-esque fashion before branching out to become its own thing entirely. There's an exquisitely designed world to explore here, a great big puzzle-box to probe and prod at as you progress through a story that's got just the right amount of mystery and intrigue about it to keep you hooked in. Combat can be a little clumsy at points early on but it improves as new powers are introduced and the game develops and grows into a surprisingly big, surprisingly challenging experience that's absolutely one of our favourite games of 2022 so far.
Will Tunic come to Switch? Well, Shouldice hasn't confirmed anything as yet, but it would seem that the deal with Microsoft is for timed exclusivity, so when that ends we'd expect Tunic to come to other platforms.
For now, however, you'll either have to download it on your PC or Xbox console – it's currently part of the Game Pass lineup on the latter. If you're a fan of old-school Zelda titles, then it really is a must-play.
I'm going to have to go with "nah, that ain't happening". It does look pretty good but I don't see it going multiplatform any time soon.
Yeah I can confirm that this is a great Zelda like game. But I recommend lowering the difficulty because combat can get frustratingly hard and clunky.
I certainly hope so, it looks so good!! And it completely suits the Switch, I think it would sell pretty well.
Looks great, do like an isometric action RPG with only one character to look after
Timed exclusivity almost definitely means it will eventually come to other platforms, the only question is when, and which ones. If they can get it to run on Switch, that seems like the most obvious first choice.
Zelda like game with a fox protagonist does seem like something I'd really like to play.
I've heard really good things about this game. I'm actually a little surprised that this one didn't launch on the Switch, but I understand if the developer opted in for timed exclusivity.
I really hope so, this looks like a perfect fit for switch.
I love 2D Zelda's like Link to the Past and Awakening so another game in that style that is apparently one of the best in recent years? Yes, yes, all of my yes.
yeah id get this one on switch, no question. looks great!
This is so obviously a zelda copy its not funny. It's furry zelda
Microsoft's other peppy little fox game, Super Lucky's Tale eventually made it to Switch. so this one is a lock.
I wasn't even aware of this game until this morning. I'll watch some playthroughs of this game on Youtube later.
Completely forgot about this game. I think I'll buy it when I get home now so thanks for this Damien.
Hopefully it's only a matter of time — I never thought Ori or Cuphead would come to Switch...
Tunic is a bit linear and the combat a bit clunky but still a very competent Link's Awakening clone. The "instruction booklet" pieces are the real treat.
On the one hand, the Ori games and Cuphead were ported, which were Xbox exclusives. Chicory was a playstation exclusive before it was ported, which is another project Finji worked on.
On the other hand, the graphics look a bit too intense for switch, especially in handheld. If they port it they might have to make a couple compromises.
or could we just get a brand new 2D Zelda??? that would be my dream after the perfection of Link Between Worlds on 3DS. I am currently playing Minish Cap to get my fix lol
I think it will, Xbox timed exclusive indie games always seem to end up on the Switch.
It looks like something that would really appeal to a Nintendo audience (me included) and I'd be really surprised not to see it make it to the Switch.
Will be buying this very very soon. I love that there is a god mode there. More options with difficulty and powering through are welcome, it will probably encourage me more to stay with standard difficulty! But so glad it’s there if a boss is destroying me and robbing me of progress xx
I played through it this weekend on game pass and will definitively buy it if it comes to Switch, hopefully physical
The manual better have some wrong information or something to make it more authentic
After Fez, Cuphead and the two Ori games, this one seems ripe to become multi-platform soon!
I really hope it does come across, I'll get an Xbox one day hopefully but I really want to play this one handheld.
I've heard people praising it in the What Are You Playing this Weekend comments, and it piqued my interest for sure.
Hopefully it does come to Switch, and gives me time to play the Link's Awakening remake first.
@Mongoosling Not sure what you're seeing in that trailer than you think is too intense for Switch? But if Ori 2 can make it across and still look stunning I'm sure this will be able to come across just fine.
It's fantastic (currently playing it on PC). I wouldn't mind seeing it on the Switch.
Tunic is the best Zelda game in years. Hopefully it does come to Switch, seems like a perfect match. In the meantime I'll continue to enjoy it on the Series S!
It's really good, and very timely that I just grabbed a Series X on Friday and was able to play this game on it; it looks and runs great. The world is a joy to explore and the combat; while difficult, is making me want to power through in a way that say- the souls games don't. The third boss in particular was pretty tough.
I love the manual feature. We really need to get back to game manuals and strategy guides.
This game is soo good.
The isometric angle hides so many neat secrets. There is also no hand holding and it's all about discovering the world on your own
I’ve been playing Tunic on Series S since it released last week, and can confirm that it is indeed an excellent game. It’s pretty tough, but my gosh is it beautiful and does it play well. Here’s hoping Tunic makes its way to Switch and PS5 when the exclusivity deal ends with Microsoft.
Getting Death’s Door vibes. Can’t wait to pick it up!
Also just popping in to verify that the game is absolutely fantastic. Would have no qualms purchasing a second time to have it on Switch.
It’s not very good. Besides we don’t need it on a console with real Zelda games.
I absolutely have loved my time with Tunic. Collecting the manual pages and following the clues is what has made this game for me. If simons quest or the nes zeldas aren’t your bag you may not like this, but if so give it a try. I would love to have a physical copy of this with the manual, which is very well designed. I had no idea this was only a timed exclusive, which gives us hope. I could see how having a physical manual would Kindve defeat the purpose of piecing it together in game but something so pretty needs to be made.
This has Switch written all over it. Let's hope they pen a contract with Nintendo before M$ buy them...
The manual is glorious! 😍
This looks really great. Switch got Death's Door, another Zelda-like Xbox exclusive only a few months after it launched so I've got hope that this will arrive before too long.
Played about an hour of it at the weekend. Fun little game but not completely blown away by it like most people seem to be. Maybe the more I play it I'll see what everyone else does. Solid 7 out of 10 for me.
This isn't exclusive to Xbox, it's on Steam/PC too. PC is not Xbox 🤦♂️
It was announced as a multiplatform game before MS got the exclusivity, so it'll come to other platforms eventually. My bet is 6 months from now.
Been playing this on Game Pass and loving it, but also had no qualms about sticking on No Fail Mode to get through the bosses and during the last third of the game when the difficulty ramps up. For me, the exploration is more interesting than the combat, so I'm glad there was the option.
Like Deaths Door I see this coming to Switch by summer time. Can’t wait !
You know what would be a real treat? If these devs got the rare opportunity to develop their own Zelda game, officially licensed and endorsed by Nintendo.
It'll come to Switch eventually. Count me in when that happens, definitely want to check it out after all the glowing reviews.
Did you not do your homework? It started as an @ID title developed by one person, which requires a exclusive launch on "The Xbox family of systems" (which includes PC now). It's a short window though, and depending on when exactly he started his relationship with @ID, it's no more then 3 months.
It's safe to assume it's coded as a PC game (given porting from PC to Xbox is almost fully automated but porting from Xbox to PC is rather time consuming, as well as the fact that there is a MAC OS release), and from what I understand the Switch and PlayStation ports are DONE, they are just waiting out a larger then normal exclusive window as part of a deal that added it as a day one release on Game Pass and gave it exposer at MS mainstage.
You're complete right in that I'm sure Nintendolife has no idea about what I'm about to say and just made a mistake, but MS language no longer includes "Xbox exclusive". It has "exclusive to the Xbox family of systems", which includes PC/MAC, and "console exclusive", which means it's not on PC.
So calling this an "Xbox exclusive" is mostly correct.
I mean, I suppose I'm kinda obligated, huh?
I am LOVING this game right now. It would definitely be better to play in handheld, but i would have to wait forever (if it were even coming to switch). It takes a bit to get good, like many games, but after the 1st big boss, i was hooked. I really hope switch only players get to experience this game, especially fans of the original Zelda (as it's a game without any handholding).
I always felt like this game would be an actual exlusive also because people would tell me I'd miss a great game if I wouldn't play it on xbox and blah blah.
But now it seems like .... they never signed any excolusive deal?
Because in that case, thats just as good as a Switch announcement to me. bc why shouldn't they release it there with the actual Zelda-audience and over 100mio systems installbase.
And even if it was exclusive it would be highly possible that they'd pull off an Ori-deal for this as its just clearly meant to be played on the Switch.
So far I played the game for about 20 min and then got softlocked and quit. I will try it again it seems like the game is pretty fun but I’m not exactly sure what I’m trying to do
I really hope so. And if not on Switch, then on Switch2!
I’ve been hoping and thinking this ever since seeing the first trailer! Said this on another article awhile ago…
The best 2D-Top-Down Zelda-likes or homages are still 3D Dot Game Heroes & Blossom Tales by far imo. For a more recent entries that I've played, I'd say also include Rogue Heroes: Ruins of Tasos & Death's Door to a lesser extent.
All great games in their own right that I hope get new sequels eventually! But for now, I think admittedly I've played enough of this current wave of Zelda-likes of late on Switch that I can wait for the next superb, standout one (or until I get the yearning for one again).
Although I may try Tunic and also Sable that are on Xbox if they ever comes to Switch.
... Wun can only hope.
I get the feeling, while this looks super simple and low-poly, there have been so many low poly or old remasters that do not run well on switch. Link's Awakening didn't run that well and that was made by Nintendo.
Contender for game of the year! Anyone with a PC or Xbox needs to check this game out. It's a masterpiece!
Also I thought Death's Door would never come to Switch but they ported it, hopefully Tunic gets the same treatment
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