Golden Force (Switch) | Review

A merry, rag-tag band of mercenaries are off to make themselves as much money as possible – and also save a kingdom in the process, I guess – in this half-decent side-scroller by the team at Storybird Games. Golden Force has the potential to be something great, though some questionable design choices in this one has only hurt the overall quality.

After choosing one of four characters on offer – none of them have any special abilities, it’s just for show – you’ll be able to enter a new zone full of coins to nab and monsters to slash. The impactful, crunchy-sounding melee combat is quite satisfying in this one. Dashing in the air will help you cover ground and pierce through enemies, while three-hit combos will lock them and you in place – very helpful against flying foes. Uppercutting and charging your attacks can send them flying, and temporary weapon upgrades can slow-roast or freeze those nasty monsters for a short amount of time.

Secret items can be spent on (overpriced) upgrades.

What doesn’t help, however, is the fact that the hit detection is a bit unfair. Chances are if you’re a pixel too close, then your attacks won’t go through and you’ll be hit instead. Considering the lack of checkpoints and health items in this one, it means a single hit could basically mess up your run if you’re not disciplined or skilled enough at dodging foes and managing your health. It taints the boss battles to an extent as well – a shame, as these are well-made and feature enough altering attack patterns to keep you on your toes.

While the levels are a decent length, the developers have made more than a few schoolboy errors throughout. Checkpoints before enemies spawn in an inescapable combat zone? Coins that trail over pits that you have no way of knowing was there? Give over, guys. And you know what else doesn’t fly? Things like being robbed of all your cash after dying – doesn’t help that the shop’s goods are overpriced. 

Two-player mode is indeed an option here, and will no doubt tip the odds slightly.

With all of these irritants in mind, the best thing I could recommend is to simply wait it out until more patches roll out. Even then, you’d be better off bagging Golden Force on a sale – £17.99 for this one doesn’t feel right. Critical though this review may be, it’s not necessarily a bad title. It’s just that a heap of annoyances have made it feel more like ‘Bronze Force’ (yeah, that’s about as clever as this conclusion is going to get).

Review code supplied by PixelHeart.



3 Stars

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