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Switch Galaxy Ultra (PS4) Review

 
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At a Glance...
 

Formats: PS4, PS Vita
 
Genre:
 
Year:
 
Publisher:
 
Developer:
 
Final Score
7.0
7.0/ 10


User Rating
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We Liked?


  • Story mode is long and gives you plenty to do
  • Pretty graphics and great soundtrack
  • Controls are responsive and quick
  • Not So Much?


  • The regular need to backtrack in order to go forward feels too grindy
  • Vince's banter can get annoying


  • Final Fiendish Findings?

    Switch Galaxy Ultra is a pretty, solid and well rounded game. Completionists will find enjoyment in going back to try and get all the tantalum and unlock all the ship upgrades. The story mode is long enough to keep you going for a good long while, and ‘Survival’ mode gives you a nice change of pace. The way the tantalum system works is kind of irritating, and will cause you to do a lot of backtracking that feels like it shoudn’t be necessary, but this is an action packed ride that will keep you going for a while.

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    Posted January 14, 2015 by

     
    Final Fiendish Findings?
     
     

    Travelling through space in your flying machine.

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    Upon seeing screenshots of Switch Galaxy Ultra for the first time, I was immediately reminded of Wipeout.  Certainly, the games developers, Atomicom, do count members of the former Studio Liverpool/Psygnosis development team amoungst their number.  But if you’re after fast paced racing, this isn’t your game.  If trying to manoeuver around obstacles at breakneck speed is something your after, then this might be the thing for you.

    The story revolves around Vince Vance, one of Dakur Technology’s best pilots, who has been given the task of going out into the galaxy and collecting an element called tantalum, which is valuable and used by Dakur in their research.  All the while, you have to make your way from city to city, ensuring you don’t crash and destroy your ship along the way.

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    The main story mode contains 55 levels, and sees Vince’s story played out through a series of comics.  Each of the levels takes place on a series of paths, and each one is split up into three parts.  The first part is on rails, and requires you to switch rails to avoid hitting obstacles by using the shoulder buttons or pressing left or right.  As you progress, your ship will speed up, but hitting obstacles will damage your ship and reduce your speed.  You can also reduce your speed manually, should you so choose.

    Eventually, you will reach a wormhole which will take you to a short free flight section, where the idea is to collect as much tantalum as possible before getting out of the other side.  While the wormhole sections are a change of pace, it’s often difficult to know if your ship is in a position where you can collect the tantalum, which is annoying.  Once you’re through the wormhole you’ll face a final obstactle section, where this time, hitting something will cause you to lose a piece of tantalum you have collected, so you have to be extra careful.  Each level requires you to have a certain amount of tantalum in order to access it, so you’ll often find yourself having to backtrack.

    There are various tools you can use to help you, though.  Each of the unlockable ships in the game can be upgraded, and you can buy hints and power ups at the start of the level to allow you to pass through a certain number of coloured gates without penalty.  There are also various power ups in the levels to help you too, such as speed boosts, gate passes and bombs.  And they become essential in a lot of cases.

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    In addition to the main story mode, there is a survival mode, which basically involves you having to keep going for as long as possible without hitting an obstacle.  One hit will be enough to total your ship and end the run.  There are leaderboards for the survival mode as well, to allow you to see how well you are doing.  There’s a multiplayer component to the game as well, but we were unable to find anyone playing the game online to test it out.

    The game itself is very pretty, with planets and stars going past you and various gates you can see in the distance, until you get to the busy city that is your final destination.  It’s kind of hard to appreciate the visuals sometimes, though, as you really need to give your full concentration to where you’re going at all times in order to succeed, as things can get quite hectic.  The whole thing is set to a pumping, energetic sound track which really fits the space age nature of the game.

    While the game play is fun and frantic, the wormhole sections are quite annoying.  There is a target time for getting through the level that will gain you a cash bonus, but seeing as you absolutely need the tantalum in the final section to advance, and that you can earn enough credits to buy and upgrade your ships through normal gameplay, it’s much better to take the final section slowly to ensure you don’t lose your precious minerals.

    FINAL THOUGHTS
    Switch Galaxy Ultra is a pretty, solid and well rounded game.  Completionists will find enjoyment in going back to try and get all the tantalum and unlock all the ship upgrades.  The story mode is long enough to keep you going for a good long while, and ‘Survival’ mode gives you a nice change of pace.  The way the tantalum system works is kind of irritating, and will cause you to do a lot of backtracking that feels like it shoudn’t be necessary, but this is an action packed ride that will keep you going for a while.


    Mike Jones

     
    Mike first started writing about video games at the age of 10 when he wrote a Sonic Chaos review for his school newspaper, and hasn't looked back since. Favourite game genres include MMOs, racing games and puzzlers, but he'll try most things once.