Release Date: September 28th, 2017
Platforms: Nintendo Switch
Sometimes a budget title comes along that deserves your attention. Sure, there are many examples of shovelware or cheap mobile ports already hitting the Switch, but don’t be fooled by the cheap price for Astro Bears Party. This is the party game you are looking for.
To be sure, if Astro Bears Party were priced any higher, this would be a tough sell. The game is a very simple concept. You pick one of four astronaut bears and then run around a sphere while a colored ribbon trails behind you. In the two available modes, for single player you will race around to catch fish for the high score while avoiding your own ribbon, while in multiplayer you try to take out your opponents with your own ribbon while avoiding running into them. You have a dash button and a jump button to use your jetpack, and that’s all there is to it.
It’s this simplicity that makes the game infectious, from the upbeat electronic soundtrack that starts blasting as soon as you hit the start menu to the adorable astronaut bears you choose from. The single player is barebones, but is still entertaining enough to play through quite a few times to beat your high score. Playing with friends is what really makes the game though. Having two buttons to learn means anyone can jump in and out with ease and enjoy themselves. Having four players is preferable since things get really hectic, but even if you just have one friend to play with its plenty of fun.
There’s not much to the title in the end, hence the cheap price tag. There is room for improvement if the title ever gets extra DLC or would happen to see a sequel. We would love additional bears to choose from or an expanded single player. For what the title actually aims to be, it succeeds in being a great addition to you collection for the next time you have some friends over.