Night In The Woods (Switch) – Review

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Ever played a game for just the conversations? Welcome to Night In The Woods

Night In the Woods is a fantastic adventure, mystery, platformer and overall great social experience when playing, which, as I admit, sounds confusing and not really fun at all. So instead of going over the story first, let’s have a quick look at the gameplay of the game, how well it fits to the Nintendo Switch on which I played it on and why I definitely recommend you to play Night In The Woods as soon as you can.

Conversations between your father and mother are an integral part of how Mae develops as a character.

Jump, Talk, Decide, Steal, Play Bass

You play as Mae Borowksi, a 20 year-old young cat lady, swearing way too much (mostly just shortened with “eff” or “effing”), hates the cops and already withing the first hour of playing you know she’s trouble. In Night in the Woods you basically walk around or jump around and talk to people. Sometimes you play the bass in your band which is quite tricky at times because the Guitar Hero-esque system feels off  in its timing when you try to hit the right notes, presented by the A,B, X and Y button.  I would still recommend playing the band songs as it turns into a hilarious mess when messing up the notes and seeing your band members reaction. Finally, there are sometimes sections on the game in which you will control Mae’s hands to either steal something or control something else, like a light bulb in the darkness to shine a light. The most interesting situations were those that actually bind you and another character together. Be it stealing something from a boutique, having a knife fight on top of a fallen down tree or taking a slice of pizza after band practice.

The band is back together and so we can play in a Guitar Hero style minigame the bass!

The story is the main character

While the gameplay may not sound too interesting, that exactly is the point of Night in the Woods. It’s not a gameplay centered game that is taking you for a challenge, instead it has a story to tell. This story is centered around you as Mae Borowski and her family and friends inside of Possum Springs. You get to know your friends again after years of not talking to each other or you find out about the past tragedies you missed while you were out of town to study. Partners share their worries with you about theior relationships and even the topic of death and depression comes up. It’s a home coming story that takes you for an emotional ride and offers also a mystery surprise on top of that. The mystery comes a bit short for my understanding, nevertheless it is still worth it as it overall impressed my a lot how the problems Mae faced all the time, especially in her interactive dreams, find their resolution in this mystery reveal.

Stunning graphics are not part of Night in the Woods, nevertheless this game is beautiful to look at.

It’s not a walking simulator

It’s yet again, important to notice how this game offers you something unique while barely being a game in a classical understanding. Most parts of the game you’re just talking and interacting, giving answers and asking questions to the people around you. The stories that you can unravel in Night in the Woods are both fascinating and shocking at times, which is rounded up by bigger mystery that’s revealing a dark past around the town itself. You play to get to know people inside of a videogame that you should not care about as much as I for example did, yet it’s worth to experience this story. A nice addition to my Nintendo Switch library on which is ran mostly without problems. Only one dream sequence of the many nightmares that Mae has to face, was having some performance issues because the particles caused by you batting out all neon lights on top of a roof. Other than that, the game ran fine. Considering the price of $19,99, €19.99 or £14.99, it has around 8 to 10 hours of game in it that’s not only heartbreaking at times but also worth experiencing. The characters feel deep, complex and well writing in that, so asking them how they are feel in some way just are genuine signs of taking care for each other.

In dream sequences we slowly unravel another mystery that’s deeply connected to Possum Springs, our hometown.