Editorials

Review: TowerFall

The game that laid the foundation for the masterpiece that is Celeste has made its way to the switch. Towerfall is a 2D action game that is similar to Super Smash Brothers as you play against friends in a chaotic battle or solo or on a team to traverse through levels to defeat an onslaught of enemies. It was first released back in 2013 on the unsuccessful Ouya. Now it has made its way to the Switch, the perfect console for indie games and the perfect console for Towerfall.

Upon booting up Towerfall it feels like a retro arcade game. The title screen has that eight-bit retro feel to it and the music feels retro too. The game is mainly geared towards playing with someone else, either against each other or on the same team. For those that have played Celeste, you will notice that it has a similar look and feel to it. That is, to say, that the gameplay is absolutely perfect. It is fluid and you always feel that you are in complete control of your character and arrows. They have even added in Madeline to the game as a playable character for the switch version.

The main mode, Versus, pits two to six players against each other on a single screen. You are equipped with arrows of which you get three. The premise is simple: be the last person standing by defeating each other by hitting them with an arrow or jumping on their head. Since you are only equipped with three arrows you will want to make sure that each arrow counts. You also have the ability to dash in the air to avoid attacks and to jump off walls. The level is created in a way so that it fits on one screen and there are holes in the bottom and the sides that you can fall or walk through to reappear on the other side of the screen.

Similar to Super Smash Brothers it is a frenzied and chaotic battle that will have you hooting and hollering all the way through. The matches usually last a few minutes and the winner is the first person to five kills (this can be changed). What’s neat is that after every kill it does a quick rewind feature to show you how you killed the other person and then it goes straight into the next round. There is even a match variants screen that allows you to customize the matches with what power-ups are available, what treasures appear and the types of arrows you shoot and more.

While the game is best-experienced playing versus the co-op mode is also a joy to play. You can either play this on your own or with up to three other friends. There are two different modes here: dark world and quest. Dark world has up to four different areas to play in with levels that you progress through that eventually leads to a boss. Each level is filled with its own enemies to defeat, each with their own distinct move set. There can be up to a dozen enemies at any given time with the goal being to defeat them all and advance to the next level. After progressing through the levels It eventually culminates in a boss fight at the end that utilizes all your skill sets to defeat them. The bosses are unique and just plain cool to play against. The other mode is Quest that has you defending Towerfall against invading monsters. There are waves of monsters you face with each wave getting harder and harder. Both Dark World and Quest mode are equally fun.

Towerfall is the Super Smash Brothers of indie games and is one of the best couch co-op games for the Switch. It is the perfect game for parties, for playing with friends or even on your own. You don’t want to miss this game.

[A copy of the game was provided to us by the publisher for review purposes.]

TowerFall
TowerFall
The Good
  • Frantic, fast combat
  • Lots of customization
  • Good variety of stages and items
The Bad
  • Single-player is limited
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