Stikbold! A Dodgeball Adventure Deluxe Review(Switch)
Updated: Feb 21, 2018
There is no ''I'' in Team,but there is in ''Win''.
Stikbold! A Dodgeball Adventure Deluxe is an action arcade sports game developed by Game Swing and published by Reign Bros.
In Stikbold! A Dodgeball Adventure you play as a ''do it all myself'' happy go lucky,not a care in the world character named Björn,who is joined by his best friend and partner in Stikbold crime,Jerome. Together they embark on a journey to finally get that first place gold trophy prove to their coach that they have what it takes to be champions.
Having just come in second in a recent tournament, their egotistic and ''evil'' coach reminds them that their failure is not acceptable and this time they BETTER win the tournament by any means necessary or else. Both Björn and Jerome knowing full well that they have a big shot at winning the tournament this time around proceed to warm up and continue to train before the finals begin. But can Björn pull through and work as a team with Jerome,knowing full well that the opposing team consists of one of his all time crushes and loves of his life?
Just as Björn is about to find out the answer to this crucial question,a loud bang rings through the building! Omg! its...the devil?(what the hell). The devil comes smashing through the sealing and kidnaps both your crush and her partner. Coach seeing this abduction take place immediately signals that they will win by default and win the gold trophy but Björn and Jerome being honorable as they are,do not want to win this way. They want to win this tournament fair and square.
Björn and Jerome vow they will get back the opposing team from the grasp of the devil and that they will do the right thing to win the tournament on their own terms. But this doesnt leave the coach in a happy mood,he offers them an ultimatum. ''Save them and get back here before the tournament starts or im accepting the trophy myself''.
It is now all in the hands of Björn and Jerome to save the day and to stop...the devil!
In the game you play through a total of 12 levels in order to achieve the goal of becoming the ultimate stikbold champion. Each stage offers a good environment variety in each level you manage to make it to. For instance your starting stage is a gym training session with your head coach where he will give you the ropes on how to play the basic functions of the game. Here you will learn about,how to throw the ball,aim the ball,dive and use your charge up powers. All which will be crucial to the way the game works later on as you progress.
Throughout the game you will go to different locations and face many different challenges. Remember your goal here is to track down the devil that stole your friends by following his footsteps(literally) to ultimately face him in Stikbold battle. Each stage offers you a specific challenge you must meet,which most of these stem to just eliminating the enemy team,but there also incentives added and objectives to each stage such as break x amount of benches,destroy hot dog carts and other various things to achieve.
As you make your way through the 12 levels you will encounter many different types of villains on your journey to rescue your friends,such as Hippies,Beach jocks,animal rights activists,oil rig pirates and giant enemy whales. Each enemy variety type you run into will require you to beat them in very specific ways. An example of this is your fight against the life guard on the beach. The lifeguard will send wave after wave of fellow life guards in order to steal your boat from you, which is quite funny considering your boat is just a blown up floatie of a whale that you stole from a litte kid earlier. I mean really?
During the fight on the beach you will have to pick up seashells/jellyfish and throw them at opposing life guards before they get close enough and steal your blow up whale. Every few waves of life guards will cause the real boss life guard to come out to fight you and you must use dodge balls to knock him out for the count to show him this is YOUR beach.
Another example I can use to show off the creativity of this games boss fights is your fight on an oil rig where you have to take on a giant flesh eating whale. You have to fight him by pushing explosive barrels into his mouth to make him take damage, all while fighting off pro-whale activists who actively try to push you off the edge and kill you for endangering the whale itself. If it sounds silly to you, then you would be correct,it is silly,but its so damn entertaining and funny at the same time.
Hazards will be a focal point of some of the stages that you need to progress through, so you will be multitasking quite a bit. While you may think that just grabbing a dodgeball and throwing it to eliminate your opponent is all you have to do,well you would be wrong. During some of the stages you will have to deal with stage hazards that include run away vans that will veer in your direction in order to run you over,which will usually result in a one hit knock out on you. Other hazards will include a food cart filled with hot dogs that will get in your way as you try to hit an opponent. If you hit the hot dog vendor and take his hot dogs from him, you can use those hot dogs and throw them to stun your opponent,very useful. Use them correctly and even you will be the weiner!(bad pun,im sorry)
Stikbold also boasts a local drop in drop out multiplayer where you and six other players may team up or play against one another in quick matches. I didn't really get a chance to try this out sadly as I do not have other friends around that are interested in playing games with me. Forever alone I shall be,but at least I have Stikbold to love me. Right Stikbold?
My really only negative with the game play part of this game was the story length of the campaign mode. It can be beaten in less than an hour on the easiest setting. Playtime can be extended to possibly just over an hour if you try your luck on a higher difficulty. Still leaves the game very short though.
The environments and design choice for this game to me seems like if you decided to take Minecraft and mix it with a water painting. The style blends really well together from both the cinematic cutscenes to the overhead game play of the game itself. Everything looks extremely crisp and no noticeable jagginess to the environment or its models. Just smooth looking and just nice to look at.
While I mentioned earlier that this game is extremely short,there are still other things to do in the game besides just beating the games story mode itself. Each stage in the game offers you 3 specific objectives to do in the level, some range from just eliminating your competition and others require you to fulfill specific environmental tasks such as breaking benches,hitting hot dog stands or collecting specific items. Chances are you wont be able to get them all your first playthrough and you will have to come back later via a higher difficulty to achieve more challenge.
There is a also a mode called Wheel Of Rampus that can be played with other friends that requires you to compete against each other in order to be the first to 5,7 or even 9 points, this however,if you guys are very competitive, can up your game play another 20-30min per match. Its a great mode to play with friends both casually and for any party situation.
Other notable mini games that are playable are: Handy Ball,Pop Pop,Crate Escape and Rainbow Rampus. All of which range from being all out no holds barred,to being objective based or team based battles. It all depends really on what style of play you and your friends are in the mood for at the specific time.
Stikbold! A Dodgeball Adventure is a wacky,fun and goofy game that will often make you scratch your head at times with how random and silly the dialogue and story is. While the game's story is mode is extremely short,the game still manages to offer enough to the players through its characters,charm,gameplay and its mini game modes to warrant it being a good game that is worth playing. With no noticeable frame drops or in game glitches in both docked and handheld mode, if you have a few hours to spare for a silly good time, then I highly suggest picking this game up!
Stikbold! A Dodgeball Adventure Deluxe is out now on Nintendo Switch!
*Review code provided by Game Swing