It's been almost 8 years since WayForward's delightful Mighty Switch Force! puzzle platformer series debuted and now, you can enjoy almost the entire series in one convenient and enjoyable package.
Before reviewing the individual games, I'd like to discuss some general aspects about Mighty Switch Force! Collection. For starters, 3 of the games are included here plus a remake of the first game. However, this isn't the entire series as Mighty Switch Force! Hose It Down! is oddly missing. I would have loved to see Mighty Flip Champs! and Mighty Milky Way included as well because those 2 games are basically the precursors to the Mighty Switch Force! series. Anyway, the games featured here are excellent and full of content to master. One common trait that they all share is that many of the stages require a lot of trial and error in order to complete because you only have 3 lives and messing up is easy to do due to the rather sensitive mechanics. Once you run out of lives, you have to start the stage all over again so you can imagine how irritating some of the later levels get. With all that said, let's get to the games!
Mighty Switch Force!
First up, we have the game that started it all. Mighty Switch Force! released for 3DS back in 2011 and since then, it's been remade but I'll discuss that later. The basic gameplay involves running, jumping, and shooting as if you're playing a Mega Man game but 1 gimmick sets it apart which is the fact that you can tap a button to make certain blocks materialize while others become transparent and traversable. As the campaign goes on, this mechanic is expanded upon as more elaborate scenarios are presented to you and things become incredibly challenging to figure out. The goal of each stage is to recapture 5 escaped convicts known as the Hooligan Sisters. You can also beat stages in under their par times if you want to 100% complete the campaign. It's rewarding stuff indeed.
Mighty Switch Force! 2
Next, the sequel to Mighty Switch Force! has Patricia Wagon take the role of a firefighter as opposed to a police officer. In this game, you have a fire hose instead of a gun and you'll have to put out fires as you traverse the intricately designed stages. Other than that, the formula remains from the first game except this time; you're rescuing the Hooligan Sisters from an out of control inferno. There is also a new collectible in the form of an Ugly Secret Baby that you can find and kick in each stage. Overall, it's a well done sequel.
Mighty Switch Force! Hyper Drive Edition
Okay, this is a weird one. Mighty Switch Force! Hyper Drive Edition is merely an HD remaster of the first game so the fact that it's included separately is a bit silly. I wish that it was lumped together with the first one and you had the option to swap graphical styles. On top of better visuals, Mighty Switch Force! Hyper Drive Edition also contains hyper versions of each stage. I think now would be a good time to mention how charming this series is. From the cute art style to the cheerful voice work and catchy music, what's not to love?
Mighty Switch Force! Academy
Finally, we have a game that never released on consoles before. Mighty Switch Force! Academy is a multiplayer focused experience where you can either cooperate or compete with up to 4 players. The large single-screen stages wrap so you can fall out of the bottom then end out on top or exit on the left and show up on the right, etc. The versus mode is quite interesting as you can only switch blocks whenever you have a Hooligan Sister in your possession and she gets taken away whenever you wrap around the screen. Therefore, it's an exciting test of precision, careful planning, and platforming skills that adds up to one crazy formula for multiplayer mayhem. That being said, the camera is very far away so make sure you have a big enough TV to play it effectively before jumping in.
It may not be entirely comprehensive yet Mighty Switch Force! Collection contains 3 excellent puzzle platformers that any fan of the genre will love. Mastering all of the content here is a rewarding task that's sure to span many hours of puzzle platforming fun.
- + Fantastic collection of 3 great puzzle platformers plus 1 HD remaster
- + Super-charming graphics and sound
- + Loads of content to master
- - No Mighty Switch Force! Hose It Down!
- - Many stages require a lot of trial and error
- - Mighty Switch Force! Academy's camera is too far away which makes playing it tricky