Game Review: Crimsonland (Switch)

10tons continues that barrage of Nintendo Switch ports and the recent release of Xenoraid is no different; a game which has previously been released onto the PC, Xbox One, PS4 and PS Vita now finds its new home on the Nintendo Switch… and its pretty much exactly as you’d imagine it if you had played the previous releases of the game.

Title: Crimsonland
Publisher: 10tons
Developer: 10tons
Platform: Nintendo Switch
Resolution: 1920 X 1080
Audio: English
Subtitles: English (White)
Local Players: 1 – 4
Online Players: N/A
Install: YES (87mb)

Our View:

For those unaware Crimsonland is an arcade styled top-down shooter that was initially released onto the PC over 10 years ago before being remade and re-released onto current-gen consoles, such as the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, with improved visuals, gameplay and weapons.

This Nintendo Switch version is no exception and as such features the exact same content as the previous PC, PlayStation and Xbox One versions; so you won’t find anything different in terms of gameplay modes, levels, enemies or power-ups. This is not necessarily a bad thing, as it means both games offer the same content, but there are some exclusive unique features to be found within this Nintendo Switch version, but more on that later.

The aim of the game in Crimsonland is to defeat all of the demonic creatures that appear on screen before being killed by them; with additional power-ups and weapons unlocked as you progress through the relatively repetitive campaign mode. At first the levels are easy, with limited enemies and one shot kills, but as you progress through the campaign not only do tougher enemies appear but the screen becomes crowded with them – so much so that you’ll easily find yourself being overpowered and ultimately killed.

To aid players in this insanity a variety of Weapon Unlocks, Power-Ups and Perks will be available at your disposable; each one become available as time progresses. For example upon completing levels additional weapons will be unlocked, but these weapons can only be used in that particular level and only if it drops on the floor – so players best keep their eyes open as these weapons won’t stay around for too long.

The same can also be said for power-ups as power-ups, such as fire-balls and freezing attacks, will appear at random and disappear within seconds if not collected. The final power-up option, Perks, is something that is yet again unlocked over time but will remain active throughout each level once unlocked. For example one of the early perks allows players a wider view of the playing field, thus making it easier to see on-coming enemies, while other perks will offer larger health and increased damage.

The main campaign, entitled Quest mode, is separated into six chapters, with each chapter housing at least ten missions – so that’s sixty missions of monster killing action before you move onto the other gameplay modes. If you are hoping for a story then sadly you will be disappointed as Quest mode doesn’t feature any cut-scenes or dialogue; it is simply ‘old-skool’ arcade action. To make this more even more of a challenge there are three different difficulty levels to choose from; so in hindsight around 180 levels of varying difficulty are available at your disposable.

The alternate gameplay mode included with Crimsonland is Survival, a mode which sees players tasked with surviving an ‘ever-increasing’ onslaught of enemies. There is no real objective here other than to obtain the highest score; a score which can then be uploaded to the leader boards and shared online for everyone to see. At first only the traditional survival mode will be available, but yet again upon completing the main ‘quest’ mode players will be able to unlock additional versions of the survival gameplay type, but once again the objective is just to survive and obtain the highest score.

So far everything within this Nintendo Switch version of Crimsonland is pretty much exactly the same as previous releases of the game; the biggest difference here however is that the game can be played in both docked and handheld mode as well as played with a variety of different controller options. For starters players can choose between using a Pro Controller or the Joy Con Controllers and regardless of how you play, either via the TV or on a table, up to four players can play at once on the same screen. It’s that couch co-op that most games tend to leave out but here it is in Crimsonland, and it works exceptionally well during the later stages of the game.

Despite the positives there are still some issues to be had, some of which can be considered out of 10tons control. First of all the game gets easily repetitive as while the enemy appearance changes the objective remains the same so long playthroughs do become a tedious experience. Furthermore with the Switch’s easy accessibility it is a shame that ‘single joy-con’ use wasn’t an option. I understand that this may have not been a possibility, due to the game requiring to analog sticks, but it would have been a great addition for each Joy-Con to be used by a single player so that 4 players could play with just 2 Joy-Con sets; but alas that is not to be.

Speaking of controls the Nintendo Switch version seemed to run a bit ‘sluggish’ compared to my experience with the PS4 version; this is not an issue but more like an observation that firing and moving, when using Joy-Con Controllers at least, didn’t feel as smooth as it should. Overall Crimsonland on the Nintendo Switch remains true to the original ‘current-gen’ re-releases of the game and offers that old-school twin-stick arcade experience that is simple and fun to play in short bursts but more importantly is well suited to the portable nature of the Nintendo Switch.

Score: review-stars-3

Crimsonland is now available for the Nintendo Switch and is also available for the PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita, Xbox One and PC.


About Scott Emsen
Scott is the Founder and Executive Editor of AnimeBlurayUK but in the past he has worked at ZOMGPlay, Rice Digital and Funstock and was once a Community Moderator for the Nokia N-Gage forums. Based in the UK, he loves anything related to Games & Anime and in In his spare time you'll mostly find him playing on one of his many gaming consoles; namely the PS Vita, PS4 or Xbox One.

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