Game: Swap This!
System: Nintendo Switch
Developer: Two Tribes
Publisher: Two Tribes
Age rating: 3/E
Price: £0.90/€1,00 / $0.99
Release Date: 2/11/18
Review code kindly provided by Two Tribes
I love fish! All kinds of fish! Some are peaceful to look at and others tasty to eat and ‘Swap This!’ is a puzzle game all about fish.
For some reason, multiple shoals of colourful fish have been frozen, and in order to free them, the player must connect fish types by swapping and changing blocks of ice. It’s a fresh take on the “match” genre of games and I highly recommend it – especially when you consider the value for money it represents. It’s bright, cheerful, addictive and lots of fun.
‘Swap This!’ is a match 4 genre of game. It requires the player to connect at least 4 types of fish together in order to free them from blocks of ice. The gamer can swap and change fish from anywhere on the grid.
After a little practice, players will soon begin to free a large number of fish by making chain combos. A key tactic is to rearrange and line up fish by colour, in order to make multiple chains and liberate a larger number of fish. The greater number of fish saved results in obtaining a better overall score.
Every now and then, the game seeks to disrupt your progress by adding urchins to the grid, but these are overcome by making by breaking ice and using powerups.
Making Combos & Power Ups
An important part of Swap This, is getting used to observing the available fish and thinking ahead in order to create numerous combinations. If you fail to pay attention, an attempt to create large chains can easily be thwarted by a lack of observation. It’s also possible to quickly add more ice/fish to a line even when a chain has been activated. This can make things quite frantic and can lead to extra points, or the possibility of making mistakes – which is part of the fun of playing Swap This!
Another major part of the game are the readily available power ups. According to the game, power ups appear following the successful chain of particular coloured fish. These power ups include the likes of: treasure chests to cut off surrounding ice and sea urchins, and slowdowns to reduce the speed to a crawl for 10 seconds.
There are also 4 game modes for players to try out:
- Minute mode; clear as many blocks as possible within a minute.
- Wave mode; clear a set number of fish within a set time.
- Fish Fight; fight off marine predators by releasing large number of fish against them.
- Puzzle Mode; clear blocks of ice by using the least amount of moves as possible.
Each mode adds small variation to the gameplay without changing to much.
The game also supports TV mode, but the best way to play Swap This is via the Switch touchscreen. TV mode uses the gyroscopic technology built within Switch joy-cons to provide an on-screen pointer that’s used to select, swap and change tiles. Personally, I find playing using method somewhat difficult due to the distance between myself and the TV. I’m afraid my joy-cons seem to struggle due to layout of our room so I play in handheld mode.
Sound and Visuals
The game boasts pleasantly cute and bright visuals with a nice little soundtrack – I really like how the marine life were designed; they have a unique style that appeals to both adults and children alike.
The overall presentation is rather simplistic, but it matches the simple nature of the game perfectly.
There isn’t really much more I can write about Swap This! What I can write is that this is a fun and addictive little game that deserves a place on everybody’s Switch. I just noticed tonight that the game is currently on offer for a mere 90p or 99¢. For this price, players of all backgrounds can have fun, and no doubt, dedicated “match” puzzle players will have another title to consume their time during the day.
I along with members of my family have enjoyed our time with Swap This! I’m happy to give it a ‘I Like It A Lot’ award.