Twin Robots: Ultimate Edition
Developer: Thinice Games
Publisher: Ratalaika Games
Release Date: 23 February 2018
eShop Price: $6.49 / £7.99
Reviewed by Josh Brant
It’s always good for a title to have a second chance at redemption, especially after a lacklustre appearance of the previous installment. Developed by Thinice Games and released first in 2013 for the Ouya and then later released on PC, Wii U, and mobile, the 2.5D platformer once known as Twin Robots has undergone a substantial face-lift and has been resurrected on the Nintendo Switch as Twin Robots: Ultimate Edition.
Twin Robots: Ultimate Edition is a simplistic puzzle-platformer where you have two robots, Watt and Volt, that you take control of. At the beginning of each stage, one of the robots is stuck in a room next to the free robot and is about to be crushed. The free robot is tasked with trying to hit a large red button in order to free his fellow robot, and then the pair must do their best to get to the end of the stage.
There is no story to speak of, with the 40 levels available to tackle up from the 28 the original version of Twin Robots featured. Each stage has a generic factory-like vibe to it, but the 2.5D visuals have been touched up for better resolution on Switch. The controls are simple enough with a jump button and another to switch between the robots on the fly, which works well. There’s also the ability to transfer battery power between the two robots by pressing X to help one another out.
Speaking of which, every action that you perform, whether it be running, jumping, or being damaged by certain obstacles or enemies, drains your battery power. If you lose it all, the robot ends up dropping. If one robot dies than you will fall the mission and have to restart from the beginning, which thankfully was not a problem due to the short stage lengths and quick restart time. The main goal is to have both of them live and you’ll have to manage their battery life accordingly in order to make sure both are able to finish.
At the end of each stage there is also a plug that you’ll have to charge up in order to open up the final door and beat the level. There are only a small amount of hazards you’ll have to deal with, mostly being in the form of lasers, spikes, crushers, or poisonous gas. Some levels will end up standing out more than others, but for the most part the designs of the stages are overly simplistic and generic, lacking any discernible style. Fortunately, the same can’t be said about the soundtrack which was composed by Levi Bond and is a huge step up from the non-existent soundtrack of the first title.
In Twin Robots there just isn’t enough here if you plan to play by yourself, fortunately there is local co-op which is fun and makes some of the longer stages more manageable. It’s a shame all of the 40 levels end up starting to blend together and feel very much the same, even when you make it to the more difficult stages.
It took me about four hours to see everything the game had to offer, and while it was fun in places, overall I felt a little underwhelmed with the presentation. However I did appreciate the achievement system that I wish every game on the Switch implemented.
I’d be remiss not to mention that there were a few times where I had one of the robots stuck on certain objects or even in the wall. Awkward animations when sliding and jumping can take some of the fun out of platforming as well, especially if it results in an untimely death that could have been avoided if the robots controlled better.
While you can get lucky sometimes and get out of certain glitches, for the most part you will need to restart, which isn’t too bad if the level is one of the smaller and enjoyable ones, but there are some levels that just drag on and get worse the further you’re able to go.
Overall, Twin Robots: Ultimate Edition is a decent puzzle-platformer that might be worth a look for how cheap it is on the Nintendo eShop. Unfortunately, there is just not enough new content to warrant a purchase if you’ve already played it elsewhere, and the lack of polish makes this hard to recommend unless you absolutely love puzzle-platformers.
Pros & Cons
+ Nice new coat of paint for the visuals
+ Great soundtrack
+ Achievement system is appreciated
- Glitches still occur too frequently
- Stiff animations can make platforming a chore
- Generic level designs