Hello gentle readers, and welcome to the SwitchArcade Round-Up for November 1st, 2022. Not much left in the year now. They really do go fast sometimes. We’ve got a few more reviews for you to enjoy today. Our pal Mikhail looks at another visual novel in the form of Piofiore: Episodio 1926, and I’ve got reviews of Ace Angler: Fishing Spirits and Garbage Pail Kids: Mad Mike & the Quest for the Stale Gum. After that, there are a few new releases to check out. Nothing too great, nothing too bad. We finish up with the usual lists of new and outgoing sales. Let’s get to work!
Reviews & Mini-Views
Piofiore: Episodio 1926 ($49.99)
About two years ago, I reviewed Piofiore: Fated Memories and called it an essential for fans of the genre. The genre has come a long way since having to rely on ports of older games on Switch to build up an audience. We now get regular localizations of otome games from Aksys Games and Idea Factory that surprisingly even see limited edition releases. Piofiore: Episodio 1926 is another new otome localization that hit the West last month on Nintendo Switch, and I’ve been slowly making my way through it.
Piofiore: Episodio 1926 is a fan disc for Piofiore: Fated Memories. While most fan disc releases serve to just be nice extensions of the original for fans, Piofiore: Episodio 1926 goes above and beyond that by feeling like a sequel. When I recommended the original game, I said it definitely earned the ESRB M rating. I feel like Piofiore: Episodio 1926 pushes that quite a bit so keep that in mind.
As an otome game, Piofiore: Episodio 1926 does a fantastic job of building its world and the characters inside as you basically make your way across the different routes the game has to offer in the start on the path to unlocking everything. Given this is a fan disc, it still involves the mafia in the city of Burlone in Italy where you play as Liliana, but the progression for each love interest really make this shine. The alternate routes definitely surprised me, but again, be mindful that the mature rating is definitely warranted here and there are aspects that aren’t for the faint-hearted.
I adored the interface and aesthetics of Piofiore: Fated Memories, and Piofiore: Episodio 1926 is gorgeous in every way. I also want to make sure I highlight that you can play it with the touchscreen all the way which is great to see in a visual novel. The music and voice acting are brilliant as well. If you are considering buying this as a fan of the original, I’d definitely recommend the limited edition release they did for it.
As a fandisc, Piofiore: Episodio 1926 is superlative. It goes above that and is more like a full sequel to the original game. While I can’t recommend this if you haven’t played the original, it is an easy recommendation if you did enjoy your time with Piofiore. I hope the few text issues can be addressed in potential future updates though. -Mikhail Madnani
SwitchArcade Score: 4.5/5
Ace Angler: Fishing Spirits ($39.99)
Ace Angler is not the game that it may seem to be at first blush. You would be forgiven for assuming it is a fishing game, given the title. It is a game about fishing, but I don’t think I would call it a fishing game. No, this is more of a glorified medal game, a concept which may or may not need further explanation depending on how much experience you have with modern game centers and arcades. And that makes sense, as this is a follow-up to a home port of just such a game. Fishing is the main activity in this game, but there’s no skill in it at all. It comes down to a lot of luck, what kind of equipment you have, and how many medals you feed in.
The arcade game is amusing enough as an attraction. It’s a tabletop monitor set-up with multiple fishing rod controllers, making it feel like you’re peering into a pond. You put in your real coins, you get some virtual medals, and you use those to buy casts on various rods, use special attacks to wear down the fish, or get a power-up or two. Catching fish earns you medals, and while you’ll sometimes end up ahead the general arc of gameplay will see you run out sooner or later. A perfectly reasonable way to spend a few minutes while you’re waiting for a movie or something.
Ace Angler: Fishing Spirits contains a juiced-up version of that arcade game among its modes. You don’t have to buy medals here with real cash. The game gives you a steady trickle of them in various ways, so even if you run out you can scrounge some up. You have more ways to use those medals, of course. There are other modes to play, most of which also use the medals. Then there’s the overall goal of the game, which sees you trying to fill up the aquarium with every type of fish. You’ll get those by playing a gacha, with each pull requiring medals or special tickets you can earn via numerous methods. Yes, you can pull doubles. You’ll get a paltry number of medals back when that happens. It feels a little rude.
The fish you pull will be displayed in the aquarium where you can check them out as you like. This is part of the the hub that connects the various modes of the game, a small space where you wander about with your own custom character that looks suspiciously similar to the villagers from Animal Crossing. Beyond the arcade game, you can also play a straight-up medal pusher, a story mode, and a party mode with various short minigames to play alone or with other players. You can also go online and play against others.
The biggest problem with Ace Angler: Fishing Spirits is that it all feels too thin. For all the different modes, it all mostly comes down to luck. You can tell this was derived from a game that is only one step removed from gambling. It puts on a decent performance of making you think you have a say in the outcome, but you really don’t. Perhaps as a lower-priced affair I could see this working better, but at the price point it’s targeting there just isn’t enough meat on the bones here in any sense. If you’re a big fan of the arcade version, you’ll likely be happy to have the game at home with all kinds of extras. I can’t imagine many others finding a lot to love here, however.
SwitchArcade Score: 3/5
Garbage Pail Kids: Mad Mike & the Quest for Stale Gum ($9.99)
One school of thought about game reviews is that a game should be evaluated based on what it set out to do. In that sense, I should congratulate Garbage Pail Kids. This very much feels like a lost licensed NES game, the kind of thing LJN or Acclaim would have had slapped on the back cover of every issue of Darkhawk back in the day. It is very true to its brand, and despite its flaws I think just about any fan of the Garbage Pail Kids will appreciate it even if they don’t love it. For anyone else, though? Hm.
For those under the age of 35 or so, Garbage Pail Kids was a series of gross-out trading cards from Topps that primarily parodied Coleco’s Cabbage Patch Kids dolls but also roasted a few other things along the way. Snot and barf were absolutely huge with my generation. I have no defense. Some kids collected these cards and you would see the stickers slapped around here and there. Then they went away, replaced by a new generation of kids’ content about bodily fluids. The peak of the brand was probably just a whisker too early to get an NES game at the time, but I wouldn’t have been surprised to see such a thing happen.
Mad Mike & the Quest for Stale Gum aims to be that game that never existed. It’s a side-scrolling platformer with four playable Garbage Pail Kids, each with their own abilities. You can switch between them freely as long as they’re still alive. Your goal is to travel to various points in time to collect materials to make some stale gum, the only treat that is to Mad Mike’s liking. You make your way through each reasonably large stage, battling enemies, avoiding hazards, and collecting cards from trash cans.
Sometimes you can find other characters who want to trade cards with you. The cards serve as special power-ups or abilities, so they have value beyond simply checking them off a list. At the end of each level you’ll face off against a boss, most of which are massive. Collect all the ingredients and you’ll see the ending. It’s all rather anti-climactic. Not a bad game from moment to moment, with decent controls and some effort put into the level designs. But it’s not a great one, either.
This is an NES game and the wrapper it uses on the Switch was provided by the folks at Digital Eclipse. It shows. There are some extra bits to help contextualize it all, plus a few options that will be familiar to anyone who has enjoyed any recent Digital Eclipse collection. It feels like a bit of overkill for a single game, but let’s not look gift horses in the mouths. Playing it this way is considerably cheaper than buying the actual NES cartridge that has been produced, so that’s another point in its favor. Certainly easier to swallow the relative brevity of the game that way.
Personally, I’ve never been a fan of the Garbage Pail Kids and never really got into gross-out humor in general. That means this game is really not aimed at me, and I fully recognize that. I think people who enjoy side-scrollers and the Garbage Pail Kids (or similar gross-out comedy) will have a decent time with this. Others will likely find this game to be rather mediocre, particularly with how abruptly it ends. It’s certainly worthy of the Garbage Pail, and assuredly doesn’t belong in a garbage pail, but I think it’s mainly one for the fans.
SwitchArcade Score: 3/5
Lonesome Village ($19.99)
Here’s a cute little adventure game that looks like another Zelda-inspired thing, but drops the combat in favor of an emphasis on puzzles and simulation elements. You play as a coyote named Wes who has to explore a tower to rescue the villagers that have disappeared. As you find them, they’ll return to the town, slowly rebuilding it. Not the longest game of its type but there’s a nice chill vibe to it that makes for a pleasant weekend of casual play.
Missile Command: Recharged ($9.99)
But wait, wasn’t there already a Missile Command: Recharged? Indeed there was. It was the first of the Recharged line and debuted as a free-to-play mobile release. The game was obviously a success of some kind as the Recharged line continued, but it has always stood out compared its successors. Given the name value of Missile Command, I imagine its off-brand feel seemed less than ideal as the Recharged series grew. So here is a new Missile Command: Recharged. It shares almost nothing with the previous one, and falls more in line with the second-wave Recharged games. That’s not a bad thing. It seems that people who bought the previous one get a discount on this game for the time being. I’ll probably review this one sooner or later.
Horse Tales: Emerald Valley Ranch ($39.99)
There sure are a lot of horse games on the Switch. That’s cool. Horses are neat. They eat a lot, and they poop a lot. When they eat an apple off your hand, they leave a lot of spit on your palm. Um, probably not in this game though. This game sees you trying to save your family ranch, which has become run down. It seems you do that by breeding and racing horses, but you can also just poke around in the open world and engage in other side activities if you want. As you play you will rebuild your ranch and expand it. Seems to be about the usual level of quality from Microids.
(North American eShop, US Prices)
Short list today, but we’ve got new low prices on Owlboy, Windbound, and Loud among others. Oh, and a big discount on the excellent Monster Train First Class. If you aren’t tired of card games yet, that’s a great one. You should also give the outbox a look as the latest Bethesda and Capcom sales come to a close. Lots of ways to spend money today if you have a mind to.
Select New Games on Sale
Wrestling Empire ($9.99 from $19.99 until 11/7)
Monster Train First Class ($14.99 from $29.99 until 11/8)
Zombiotik ($3.72 from $12.41 until 11/8)
The Dresden Files Card Game ($8.49 from $16.99 until 11/11)
Owlboy ($9.99 from $24.99 until 11/11)
Windbound ($3.99 from $19.99 until 11/11)
Nordlicht ($1.99 from $3.99 until 11/11)
Dice Legacy ($4.99 from $19.99 until 11/11)
Gods Will Fall ($3.74 from $14.99 until 11/11)
Loud ($5.39 from $11.99 until 11/14)
Death’s Hangover ($1.99 from $4.99 until 11/14)
BIT.TRIP Series, Assorted ($1.99 from $4.99 until 11/14)
DungeonTop ($1.99 from $13.99 until 11/14)
Chex Quest HD ($1.99 from $4.99 until 11/14)
Door Kickers ($1.99 from $11.99 until 11/14)
Sales Ending Tomorrow, Wednesday, November 2nd
Ace Attorney Turnabout Collection ($34.99 from $59.99 until 11/2)
Among Us ($3.50 from $5.00 until 11/2)
BloodRayne 2: ReVamped ($13.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
BloodRayne Betrayal: Fresh Bites ($12.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
BloodRayne: ReVamped ($13.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Brotherhood United ($1.99 from $8.99 until 11/2)
Capcom Arcade Stadium 1+2+3 DLC ($19.99 from $39.99 until 11/2)
Capcom Arcade Stadium Pack 1 DLC ($9.99 from $14.99 until 11/2)
Capcom Arcade Stadium Pack 2 DLC ($9.99 from $14.99 until 11/2)
Capcom Arcade Stadium Pack 3 DLC ($9.99 from $14.99 until 11/2)
Capcom Beat ‘Em Up Bundle ($9.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Capcom Fighting Bundle ($38.99 from $59.99 until 11/2)
Capcom Fighting Collection ($29.99 from $39.99 until 11/2)
Carrion ($9.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Clone Drone in the Danger Zone ($11.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Cozy Grove ($8.97 from $14.99 until 11/2)
Crysis 2 Remastered ($16.49 from $29.99 until 11/2)
Crysis 3 Remastered ($16.49 from $29.99 until 11/2)
Dead By Daylight ($11.99 from $29.99 until 11/2)
Dead By Daylight Ultimate ($48.99 from $69.99 until 11/2)
Death Road to Canada ($5.99 from $14.99 until 11/2)
Death’s Door ($9.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Deleveled ($2.47 from $9.99 until 11/2)
Demons of Asteborg ($7.19 from $17.99 until 11/2)
Devil May Cry ($9.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Devil May Cry 2 ($9.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Devil May Cry 3 Special Edition ($11.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
DOOM 1993 ($1.99 from $4.99 until 11/2)
DOOM 2016 (15.99 from $39.99 until 11/2)
DOOM 3 ($3.99 from $9.99 until 11/2)
DOOM 64 ($1.99 from $4.99 until 11/2)
DOOM Eternal ($14.99 from $59.99 until 11/2)
DOOM Eternal DE ($22.49 from $89.99 until 11/2)
DOOM Eternal DLC 1 ($9.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
DOOM Eternal DLC 2 ($9.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
DOOM Eternal Expansion DLC ($14.99 from $29.99 until 11/2)
DOOM II Classic ($1.99 from $4.99 until 11/2)
DOOM Slayers Collection ($19.99 from $49.99 until 11/2)
Fashion Friends ($5.99 from $9.99 until 11/2)
Fracter ($2.44 from $6.99 until 11/2)
Freshly Frosted ($7.99 from $9.99 until 11/2)
Gang Beasts ($17.99 from $29.99 until 11/2)
Ghosts ‘n Goblins Resurrection ($19.99 from $29.99 until 11/2)
Halloween Forever ($4.99 from $9.99 until 11/2)
Hampuzz ($3.49 from $6.99 until 11/2)
Jenny LeClue Detectivu ($1.99 from $24.99 until 11/2)
Mega Man Legacy Collection ($7.99 from $14.99 until 11/2)
Mega Man Legacy Collection 2 ($7.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Mega Man X Legacy Collection ($7.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Mega Man X Legacy Collection 2 ($7.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Mega Man Zero/ZX Collection ($14.99 from $29.99 until 11/2)
Monster Hunter Generations Ultimate ($11.99 from $39.99 until 11/2)
Monster Hunter Rise ($29.99 from $39.99 until 11/2)
Monster Hunter Rise + Sunbreak ($49.99 from $69.99 until 11/2)
Monster Hunter Rise + Sunbreak Deluxe ($59.99 from $79.99 until 11/2)
Monster Hunter Rise Deluxe ($34.99 from $49.99 until 11/2)
Monster Hunter Rise Sunbreak Deluxe DLC ($37.49 from $49.99 until 11/2)
Monster Hunter Rise Sunbreak DLC ($29.99 from $39.99 until 11/2)
Monster Hunter Stories 2 ($29.99 from $59.99 until 11/2)
Monster Hunter Stories 2 Deluxe ($34.99 from $69.99 until 11/2)
Okami HD ($9.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Onimusha Warlords ($7.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Pad of Time ($6.66 from $7.99 until 11/2)
Perception ($2.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Phoenix Wright: AA Trilogy ($14.99 from $29.99 until 11/2)
QUAKE ($3.99 from $9.99 until 11/2)
Resident Evil ($9.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Resident Evil 0 ($9.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Resident Evil 4 ($9.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Resident Evil 5 ($9.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Resident Evil 6 ($9.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Resident Evil Revelations ($7.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Resident Evil Revelations 2 ($7.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Return of the Obra Dinn ($11.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Roundguard ($6.95 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Shinsekai Into the Depths ($9.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Space Otter Charlie ($7.34 from $14.99 until 11/2)
Speed Dating For Ghosts ($2.37 from $6.99 until 11/2)
Speed Truck Racing ($1.99 from $9.99 until 11/2)
Splatter ($1.99 from $4.98 until 11/2)
Stories Untold ($1.99 from $9.99 until 11/2)
Street Fighter Anniversary Collection ($11.99 from $29.99 until 11/2)
SUPERHOT ($12.49 from $24.99 until 11/2)
TESV: Skyrim Anniversary Edition ($41.99 from $69.99 until 11/2)
TESV: Skyrim Anniversary Upgrade DLC ($15.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
The Ambassador: FT ($3.71 from $14.99 until 11/2)
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim ($29.99 from $59.99 until 11/2)
The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles ($24.99 from $39.99 until 11/2)
The House of the Dead Remake ($16.74 from $24.99 until 11/2)
Tribes of Midgard ($9.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Two Point Campus ($31.99 from $39.99 until 11/2)
Ultra Street Fighter II ($19.99 from $39.99 until 11/2)
Witcheye ($1.99 from $4.99 until 11/2)
Wolfenstein II: New Colossus ($11.99 from $39.99 until 11/2)
Wolfenstein Youngblood ($5.99 from $19.99 until 11/2)
Wolfenstein Youngblood DE ($8.99 from $29.99 until 11/2)
That’s all for today, friends. We’ll be back tomorrow with more new releases, more sales, and perhaps a bit of news. Probably no reviews but sometimes good ol’ Mikhail surprises me. I hope you all have a terrific Tuesday, and as always, thanks for reading!