[Review] FutureGrind – Nintendo Switch

Written by Kieran Fifield
  • Developer: Milkbag Games
  • Publisher: Milkbag Games
  • Release Date: 22/01/2019
  • Price: £15.29 / $19.99
  • Review code provided by Milkbag Games

The grind is real

FutureGrind is a runner/platformer on multi coloured rails that offers something that is almost as unique as it is challenging. Essentially the game is set in the future and involves grinding, which makes the title incredibly astute. Whilst your vehicle is in essence an unicycle; navigating the rails on one wheel – where there should be a seat there is in fact another wheel. Thus making the aforementioned unicycle more of a convoluted bicycle….

Man, the future terrifies me

FutureGrind looks very pleasant indeed and unlike a lot of the futuristic, dystopia themed titles on the market doesn’t completely jump on the neon aesthetic that is so often used to depict what the future will look like.

Musically, FutureGrind offers a soundtrack that lends itself perfectly to the setting of the game, and bignic has created an incandescent soundtrack which can only be complimented. He has read the brief provided by the developers, and absolutely nailed it. 5 out of 7!

The basic premise is to switch between the rails, alternating the colours of your wheels and navigating any hazards to eventually arrive at the chequered flag. If you land on the wrong colour, that’s it. Game over. The level starts again, there are no check points. Zilch, zip, nothing, nada!

FutureGrind also has a relatively deep selection of tricks and techniques, which are imperative for racking up high scores and nabbing gold trophies throughout the wide array of locales and levels. By the time you have mastered the undergrind and the handrail, you’ll be rinsing Gold like a Spandau ballet cover band.

Colour me impressed FutureGrind

You change the colours of your wheels in numerous ways, depending on the level. In the early stages you do it by simply flipping your bike 180 degrees, after a while you unlock a bike with a much larger and heavier wheel that changes the complexion of the game somewhat, as now you have to deal with the physics of a top heavy vehicle. Even later, you acquire a bike that freshens things up further by having one dud wheel, a wheel that you can’t land on. Instead every time you initiate a jump sequence the colour of the one wheel changes, meaning you need to plan runs 2 moves in advance. As I reached the climax of this title, the difficulty had somewhat increased and I found myself a little aghast and frustrated.

I’m living in the future so the present is my past

Herein lies my biggest gripe with what is otherwise an utterly addictive if somewhat basic experience. Whilst the game starts off being incredibly easy, allowing you time to familiarise yourself with the concept, it is a real shame to say that it doesn’t gradually ramp up the difficulty, instead introducing new ideas throughout while remaining incredibly easy, only to hike the level all the way up to max at the nth hour, once all the techniques have been unlocked.

Unfortunately this really does take a toll on the enjoyment of the game as, 80% is really quite enjoyable, an absolute blast to play, albeit very much a case of going through the motions, only for the back end to feel much more nefarious in nature.

Conclusion

FutureGrind is an incredibly competent entry into the genre of futuristic electro fuelled stunt racers. Whilst the game does contain a back story that tries to offer depth, it mainly just comes across as silly. That being said, some of the hacking levels are very cool visually. This title truly shines as an enjoyable pick up and play experience that you can also lose an entire evening to. You will fail, a lot, but the chances are you’ll want to have just one more try.

Pros:

  • Addictive gameplay
  • Opulent soundtrack
  • Replay value
  • Pleasantly presented

Cons:

  • Insane difficulty spike
  • Unnecessary tacked on story

Verdict
FutureGrind is different enough to set it apart from the competition and offer a unique and addictive gaming experience
4/5 

Fifield

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