A Chicago gangster versus an alien invasion — not the weirdest premise out there these days, but still a crack-pairing nonetheless, right? Well, Timothy vs The Aliens may seem pretty crazy, what it delivers is borderline-unplayable on the Switch. At least, without wanting to throw your console out the window in a fit of rage, but even that brief moment of respite is more entertaining than the game itself.
Timothy ain’t your average goon. He’s imbued with a special ability, passed onto him by aliens when he was abducted years ago. Transmitted via an Ace of Hearts attached to his hat, he can slow down time for a short amount of time. However, he didn’t realise that being given this ability came with a price, and, to put things briefly, a whole swarm of aliens have consequently arrived on Earth and are ready causing havoc in Little Fish City. He’ll need to regroup with any survivors he can find to thwart the invasion.
The shooting feels clunky and unsatisfying, and the four weapons on offer ain’t special. Same goes with your special ability, it’s nothing interesting at all. Moving around feels clunky, and there’s so many platforming sections that could cost you your life and force you to replay sizeable chunks of levels that you’ve lost your hard-earned progress on. You jump pretty high, but not very far, and some platforms aren’t big enough to give you a running start. Driving around town is definitely better than walking, but not by much, and the narrow roads and lack of worthwhile places to explore outside of your objectives make it a fairly barren and empty city to traverse through.
The tasks are a tad varied, but none of them excel in any way. Fetch quests, time trial racing, riding platforms in the sewer, basic sequence puzzles, making a last stand — everything about the gameplay is just far too sloppy or barebones to make any of these worth trying. What makes them even tougher to play is the fact that the Switch version struggles to maintain even 30fps. It’s also pretty glitchy as well. At times when I was jumping, his body froze as I moved him around. Only by reverting back to a previous checkpoint, or entering the over-shoulder aiming, did it start to play the correct animation again.
I think the one thing that the game truly nails is the soundtrack. If you like stereotypical, jazzy tunes, then you’d probably get a kick out of the tunes that play in this one. In contrast with the rest of the game, it’s pretty high-quality stuff. Plus, it has that film noir aesthetic going for it, which might appeal to s ome out there, even if the graphics and animations aren’t impressive in the slightest.
Alas, Timothy vs The Aliens is an overpriced title that offers far too little to be considered worth trying out. Seriously, with a price tag like this, you’ll feel like a mook if you fork over your cash without second-thought here. It’s clunky, boring, and a hassle to play, but Switch owners will feel like the biggest shmucks here.
Review code supplied by WildSphere.