- Developer: Chucklefish
- Publisher: Chucklefish
- Release Date: 01/02/2019
- Price: £15.99 / $19.99
- Review code provided by Chucklefish
Introducing: Wargroove: Double Trouble Nintendo Switch Review
I recently had the chance to revisit a Switch classic. Wargroove is a memorable SRPG which launched early 2019. Upon jumping into this tactical role-playing game I immediately saw why it draws such admiration. This delightful work takes a standard formula and heaps on a charming layer. The added DLC, Double Trouble makes it even more enticing to give this gem a chance if you haven’t already.
The Queen’s New Groove
Wargroove follows a young ruler after the demise of her father, the King. This new Queen must find her footing while her nation is thrown into a war with the undead. She’ll embark on a quest to save her people and unite the lands against a haunting evil. Ever optimistic and brave, Mercia stands strong while gaining capable allies along the way.
Though the story isn’t anything that hasn’t been seen or done before, it felt refreshing all the same. The characters are full of personality and the cutscenes are entertaining with plenty of humor. The additional content from Double Trouble adds a new campaign with new perspective from Outlaw commanders.
War, What is it Good For?
Like the story, the gameplay is also a refreshing experience. I’m the type of gamer who likes to mix up genres when I play. Just as rewarding as it can be to sink 80 hours into an RPG, it can feel like a slog after the third behemoth in a row. As it happened, I dove into Wargroove after wrapping up several other Strategy RPGs.
Fortunately it didn’t feel like a chore. The development team took a familiar approach but tweaked each unit and battle to feel personal. Anytime I lost a standard swordsman, I felt gutted. As Queen, I didn’t want to lose a single soul to the vile enemy. I felt a sense of duty to every troop under my command.
Wargroove is a tactical game played on a grid with turn-based combat. One of the more exciting elements is that you have to capture strategic locations on the map in order to succeed. Taking control of villages gives you income each turn. Additional buildings such as barracks let you spend your income on new units. Your troops come in all ranges from knights to dragons or even seafaring creatures and war turtles who specialize at water combat.
Wargroove isn’t just fun to play, it’s a satisfying adventure which gives you control of the army you send to battle. There’s a lot of freedom which allows you to experiment with various troops to approach each level.
No More War Pigs Have the Power
If the core game didn’t offer enough to sink your teeth into, there are a variety of modes that make Wargroove infinitely playable. There are various co-op modes that you can get into the trenches with your friends. Honestly, if I had a couch co-op SRPG growing up, my mind would have exploded from disbelief. Wargroove doesn’t just tack multiplayer on as a gimmick, it’s done well. It’s a robust offering which makes this charming game that much sweeter. Not only can you play the vanilla game with your best buds, you can even create your own battlefields rife with enemies and strongholds. There’s a lot of content packed into this title.
I mentioned the story and the characters above, and though the writing stands on its own, the pixel art masterfully crafts a unique experience and ties everything together. Not only are the animations in the cutscenes fluid and purposeful, the way the characters bob around on the map give a childlike flair. This innocence is a tad beguiling however, since the combat isn’t a walk in the park. This strategy game actually requires strategy and will be tough on the uninitiated. Each scene, character or building shows off how individual pixels can represent compelling art and compete with 3D rendered graphics that the triple-A titans tout.
The team didn’t skimp on the music or sound effects either. All of them come together in a cohesive package. Hearing troops charge an empty building never got old. The only drawback I noticed in the sound department was the partially voiced acting for the characters. Some of the grunts or single words were reused quite a bit and was the only jarring aspect in Wargroove’s overall presentation.
Wargroove ran and played smoothly. I never ran into a crash or technical issue. The UI and controls were also slick and made for an easy gaming experience. Wargroove looks beautiful both on the big screen and in handheld mode. It’s a defining game for the SRPG genre and a wonderful addition to the Nintendo Switch.
It was hard to find flaws with Wargroove. The story and gameplay are fresh despite clear nods to preceding powerhouses of the genre. Wargroove is a distinct experience with creative characters and fun units to explore. The only qualm I had was with the limited voice acting but even that’s a stretch. Ultimately, Wargroove has a wealth of content which is only deepens with Double Trouble. The campaign is only the tip of the iceberg as multiplayer, co-op and building your own maps gives plenty to satiate any strategist.
- Enjoyable Narrative and Characters
- Smooth Combat
- Build-Your-Own Battlefields
- Added DLC
- Limited Voice Acting
Wargroove is a Nintendo Switch classic that other SRPG’s should be measured against.