Syberia (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Adam Riley 18.11.2017 3

Review for Syberia on Nintendo Switch

Benoît Sokal's Syberia first landed on PC back in 2002 after the Belgian comic artist and game developer's breakout hit, Amerzone, proved to be a massive commercial and critical success. Whilst that game has not graced many platforms since, Syberia has been brought to numerous systems, including being crammed onto the diminutive Nintendo DS, without too many issues. Now, developer Microids returns with a tweaked edition for Nintendo Switch to kick off a flurry of Switch releases that will eventually include the second and third entries into Kate Walker's adventurous escapades.

Kate Walker, a lawyer by trade, gets embroiled in the journey of a lifetime when on a mission to get the signature of one Anna Voralberg, owner of a toy factory that her business wishes to take control of. Sadly, upon arriving, Kate finds out that Anna has died. However, Hans, Anna's brother, may well still be alive, just missing because of various intriguing reasons that Kate attempts to get to the bottom of as she delves deeper and deeper into the odd happenings across the various European locations she visits, and even parts of Eastern Russia. Eventually, after witnessing events she never could have imagined, she begins to wonder if the lifestyle she had back in New York was right for her, and so begins a life-changing journey.

There were issues with how Syberia was ported to PlayStation 3 a few years back, but Microids has made a great effort to make this new update as suitable for Nintendo Switch as possible. Whilst still somewhat clunky at times when docked due to the way the gamepad system is employed (a curse for all games of this ilk making the transition from PC to console), it really comes to life in portable mode.

Screenshot for Syberia on Nintendo Switch

When docked, regular controls are used, and transitions between different areas are not as smooth as they could be. Kate can be guided freely around most places, which works well, but players have to wait for an on-screen icon to appear when nearing the edge of an area so the action button can then be pressed in order to move onwards. It works well enough most of the time, but sometimes the icon does not appear unless Kate has been positioned in exactly the correct place, which leads to confusion, and ultimately frustration, as players try to keep searching for an exit.

When the touch screen comes into play, though, Syberia truly is a joy to play through, and the engrossing story can definitely be enjoyed to the maximum, exploring the enchanting world, solving the intriguing puzzles at play, and interacting easily with the vast array of endearing characters met along the way, including the quirky Oscar, just one of the automatons created by genius inventor, Hans Voralberg.

Microids has also taken the small screen of Switch into account, choosing to leave on-screen hotspots visible as default. This may aggravate older point-and-click adventure fans that wish to discover things themselves, but it actually removes any possible frustration involved in having to otherwise tap all over the tiny screen, hoping for a result. Should it prove to be too bothersome, though, it is possible to turn them off in the settings. Use of the inventory screen can sometimes be a bit fiddly for those with chunkier fingers (trying to tap items for use, but instead clicking out of the menu), but this can be adjusted to, and if using a soft-ended stylus there is far greater accuracy. Fingers will suffice the majority of the time, though, and the adventuring is all the better for it, bringing the original PC's point-and-click approach back to the fore.

Screenshot for Syberia on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

8/10
Rated 8 out of 10

Great - Silver Award

Rated 8 out of 10

Microids has done an excellent job of porting the classic point-and-click adventure to Switch. Kate Walker's epic first adventure in Syberia is every bit as gripping today as it was 15 years ago when originally on PC, and it fits perfectly on Nintendo's system, boding well for the impending releases of Syberia II and Syberia 3. Hopefully this is the first of many point-and-click adventures brought across to Nintendo Switch.

Developer

Microids

Publisher

Microids

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  8/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date None   Australian release date Out now   

Comments

I've updated the part about the on-screen hotspots in touch-screen mode, since it seems I missed the option to turn them off in the settings. Having them on as default, though, is indeed a great idea and helped considerably on the smaller screen.

Adam Riley [ Operations Director :: Senior Editor :: Cubed3 Limited ]
Word of Adam | Voice123 Profile | AdamC3 on Twitter
Ryan (guest) 30.04.2018#2

Your write-up was organized in a way where I could skim through and find the information that I was looking for without being spoiled of the game's story and mechanics.

Appreciated!

You're very welcome! Have you played the sequel, as well? I'm really looking forward to the third game coming to Switch. The PS4 version I originally played was plagued with technical glitches, but I've heard there have been plenty of updates to S3 that will make it into the Switch port.

Adam Riley [ Operations Director :: Senior Editor :: Cubed3 Limited ]
Word of Adam | Voice123 Profile | AdamC3 on Twitter

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