BOMBFEST Switch Review by SwitchWatch

Developer: Sudden Event Studios

Publisher: Whitethorn Digital

Release Date: Out Now

Price as of Article: $19.99 USD, £15.69 GBP

Game code provided by Whitethorn Digital

Story

There isn’t a story in BOMBFEST, so let’s move straight onto the gameplay.

Gameplay

Let’s just get this out of the way, BOMBFEST is a hilarious, explosive multiplayer bonanza! Its core concept is so simple, but it works so well.

I’ve reviewed quite a few multiplayer games lately, and they all have their positives, but all fail to keep me invested for the long haul. BOMBFEST, however, is a fantastic multiplayer and I love it –here’s why: the core crux is to pick up a bomb and lob it at your enemies… and that’s it! The game focuses on pure entertainment without making things overly complex. Pick one of the many wooden toy characters, the transition from one room to another, and try to be the last one standing!

My house!

Each miniature battlefield is located in different parts of a huge house. After you’ve left the practice arena, you will move to a new area in a very cool transition. The camera will zoom in on the miniature battlefield located in one of the many rooms of this giant house. The arena will be surrounded by giant furniture which can make you feel really small and vulnerable. The transition looks really cool, making each new arena exciting to see.

You’ll be fighting on huge birthday cakes in the living room, battling on kids’ play mat, and even fighting in a kitchen sink with every thought that one wrong move could have you falling down the plug hole.

Levels have wooden blocks that provide cover or extra obstacles for you to climb over. It’s very satisfying to watch pieces blast all over the place when bombs start going off.

Arenas have a really interesting, unique look to them and the game never holds you up in the loading screen – it’s all quick and snappy, making sure you’re always moving to the next room and straight into a battle.

You can change the set-up of matches, like how many rounds, how frequent different bombs appear, and what stages you want available during matches. Once you’ve unlocked them, you can also add modifiers to your matches.

Puppetmaster!

Controlling your little wooden toy is super easy to do. When you begin a game, you’re taken to the front porch of the house – this is where you practice movement and throwing. You can also try out new bomb types here as well.    

You move with the left analogue stick and can pick up bombs with the B button which also shows you the arch of the bomb you’re going to throw, giving you an idea where it’s going to land. By pressing the B button again, you can throw it in the direction you’re facing. You can also jump and tumble out of harm’s way with the A button… and that’s it. Easy to pick-up and play.

Bombs away!

One really cool feature is all the unlocks you can play around with. Every time you play a certain number of matches, you will unlock a new character, costume pieces, or new bombs!

Characters have no facial features. They’re just little wooden figures, but each has its different painted outfit, like the wizard, the classic tailor, baker, etc. None of these characters has any unique abilities, and they’re merely a tool to help you throw bombs.

You also unlock various hats for the little toys which can be unlocked after playing multiple matches.

Each of the bombs has their own different effects, like the ice bomb which can slide after being thrown or gum bomb which can stick to targets or obstacles.  

You can set the frequency of all bombs you unlock in the set-up option.

Smash!

Similar to Smash Bros., BOMBFEST has a hit ratio with each blast, slowly making it more likely that you will be thrown off or, in this case, blasted off the arena.

However, instead of it being a percentage that increases, BOMBFEST has its characters displayed at the bottom of the screen, and each hit or blast makes little-shocked lines appear above your character. It takes five hits before you are blasted completely off a stage, so you do have a chance to survive if you keep moving.   

But with so many bombs exploding and chain reactions occurring, it can make it hard to avoid them all, it can get chaotic quickly!

Multiplayer mayhem 

BOMBFEST is fantastic in multiplayer, and it’s just as enjoyable in single player. I’ve not put it down as the quick succession of bouts keep things moving at a swift pace and if I’m waiting in a queue or on the bus, that time passes by very quickly, thanks to the explosive nature of BOMBFEST.

Multiplayer is so much fun, and the portable aspect of the Switch makes this a great game to take to your friends or family for some exploding mayhem!

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Audio

Music is good in BOMBFEST and I like a lot of the tracks – they’re all really snappy! Plus, the explosions are punchy and have some weight to them. I also really like main menu sound track, and the little jingle when a match is complete.

Visuals & Performance

Visually, the game looks lovely. It has a rather unique, hand-crafted look and I love it! Simple, but it has a real charm to it.

Little details, like character wobble while walking and physics, all work great and really add to the quirky nature of this multiplayer game.

Performance has been perfect. I’ve had no issues in multiplayer or when I was playing alone. Everything ran great.

Switches Icon!

The icon for BOMBFEST is clear and clean. It’s just the title with a blast surrounding it. It’s nothing spectacular, but it serves its purpose.

The game also supports screenshots and video capture.

Value

At £15.69, I’d say there’s a lot to enjoy here, especially if you’re looking for a 4-player multiplayer game. It’s easy to pick up and is a lot of fun to play with friends and family.

There are lots to unlock, including stages, characters, costumes, and bombs – plenty of BOMBS!

I should also mention that there are bots included, so you can play the game by yourself, which is a great inclusion.

Pros

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Hand-crafted art style

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4-player is a total blast!

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Lots to unlock

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Transition to new areas looks great

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Bots are available – (single player)

Cons

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Really long load time at the very beginning of the game. (No loading during play, though)