Introducing: New Team17 Switch Games
Yooka-Laylee, Blasphemous, Overcooked and Raging Justice. These are all games and series I have spent countless hours enjoying on my Nintendo Switch, but what all do they have in common? The lovely people at Team17 published all of these titles. Each is a banger in its own right, with Blasphemous still sitting at my favorite game of this console generation. With this in mind, I knew I had to see what Team17 had in store for Switch owners in the future. While at PAX East, I was able to try out two lovely titles. While they are very different from one another, each has a certain magic about it that is synonymous with Team17.
From seeing the initial trailer, I knew this game would be a hit in my household. My wife and I love Overcooked and Moving Out was dripping with those vibes. It is a co-op game which allows up to four people to become professional-ish movers. I saw “ish” because after my demo, I would not trust myself to move anything. Except maybe pillows, but who knows, nothing is safe!
Myself and three other players were put into a few different scenarios in which we had to empty out a house or apartment of all valuables into a moving truck. Most items could be moved with one player while others required two. These large pieces brought chaos, calamity and hilarity to Moving Out. Trying to work together against the clock was what made Overcooked so fun, and it’s no different here. Unlike regular moving which can hurt your back, knees and any other limbs that get caught in the door, Moving Out has no qualms with your character running into things or throwing furniture. At times, it’s encouraged.
There was an instance where we didn’t have any space left on the moving truck due to our lack of coordination when placing the rest of the items in. So, we worked together and tossed the large couch we had just lugged outside up into the truck and boom. Level complete! Things like this would end up with legal action in real life but Moving Out feels more like a cartoon or sitcom.
One level in particular had me cracking up due to a Seinfeld reference, intentionally or not. We were moving items across a busy highway that is next to a river with alligators and floating logs. There was a suspicious looking frog jumping around as well. I see you, Frogger! But the Seinfeld reference involved George trying to get a Frogger machine across a busy street. In Moving Out, you have to escort an arcade machine across a busy street and a river, reference inception!
Nostalgia aside for the Overcooked antics and other pop culture references, Moving Out seemed to scratch a different itch. You had to work together, doing the same task, sometimes literally together, and sometimes by yourself. I really enjoyed my playtime and I cannot wait until April 28th 2020 for it to release.
I wasn’t quite sure what to expect when I jumped into the Survivalists demo. I had never experienced the Escapists games, but I was aware of their existence. I was flying blind into this game, and that wasn’t a bad thing. This title puts you into the shoes of a castaway on a nearly deserted island. You must gather all the materials you can on the island to craft tools for means of survival. The crafting tree seemed very expansive and it unlocked more options as you continued to build and experiment. You will need to remain vigilant as things on the island are not as they seem.
This brings us to the point of the nearly-deserted status of the island. I say “nearly” because of the hostile natives, ferocious wildlife and friendly monkeys. Most will try to stop you in your pursuit of a better life on the island, but not the monkeys! These friendly simians will follow you around and take orders. Sort of. If you are cutting down trees, give the monkey a banana and let him observe you. After you have cut down a tree, give it the axe and let it go to work. It will continue to do that task until the tool breaks or there are no more trees in its limited vicinity. This will certainly help, as you can train monkeys to do some of the more menial tasks while you explore.
Just make sure you have something to defend yourself, as the island is prowled by beasts, such boars and angry villagers. Due to this game being procedurally generated, I didn’t happen to see any villagers in my demo, but I saw plenty of boars. They are relentless once they have you in their sights. Felling one will grant you with some vital food. The harsh circle of life. This was only a small portion of the island I explored, and there are an infinite number of islands available that will each be unique. As of the time of writing, the Survivalists doesn’t have a set release date, but Team17 plans to deliver the goods in the near future.