This is the Police (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Athanasios 27.01.2018

Review for This is the Police on Nintendo Switch

When it comes to strategy games, what matters the most isn't how deep or complex a title is. Whether you are dealing with something that only does one thing but does it great (StarCraft, Age of Empires II), or something that mixes things up a bit (Civilization, Endless Legend), the important thing is to feel that you actually have power over what happens on the screen. This is the Police, which Cubed3 has reviewed for the PS4 and PC, belongs in the second category, as it attempts to combine elements of resource management, role-playing, and puzzle-solving, and all this along with a strong, cop drama-like narrative. The result is, indeed, a refreshing cocktail. Unfortunately, you are not really in control of the Men in Blue.

This is the Police approaches the realm of law enforcement in a realistic way, instead of giving players a family-friendly, cops-vs-robbers tale. This tells the story of Jack Boyd, the police chief of a police department, who is forced into early retirement for some shady, political reasons. Before his expiration date eventually comes, though, he will try and amass a big fat "pension," something that will be done by siding with organised crime - whether he wants to or not.

Presentation-wise, it gets straight 'A's, with its Noir-esque narrative mixed with a purposely ultra-minimalist look, and some fantastic tunes bopping along, which range from Jazz and Piano Bar Lounge, to Beethoven and Chopin. The ending of this, admittedly, fine-crafted story, leaves a lot to be desired but, for the most part, this will surely keep players interested.

Screenshot for This is the Police on Nintendo Switch

The real issues, however, begin when the actual game starts, although this won't be obvious from the get-go. On the surface, This is the Police is a resource management/strategy title, where the purpose is to micromanage a police department; send cops to stop thefts, arsons, and so on; have detectives examine scenes of crime; and handle… special requests that pop up every now and then, that can include anything, from firing all black cops, to actually turning a blind eye to a certain somebody's dirty deeds.

The action takes place above a miniature model of the city of Freeburg, which, by the way, looks quite good, and, through the use of certain sound effects, makes you feel as if you're personally in the very room where this resides. Every now and then, all sorts of events will appear on this map, and the task will be to send a couple of officers to check them out, and, hopefully, leave the site unscathed, or, in the case of detective work, figure out what has happened by rearranging a couple of 'frames' in the correct sequence.

Screenshot for This is the Police on Nintendo Switch

Unfortunately, deciding who to send and where won't exactly require much thought, as the only thing to consider is the leading officer's level of 'Proffesionalism,' which is basically a statistic that increases/decreases the odds of something bad happening. Detective investigations need a few ounces of thought, or, more precisely, a knack for noticing some… not that hard to notice details, but, again, these are too simplistic and easy to really care.

On the other hand, however, there are many occasions when your officers will simply fail (or even die), without you even understanding why. Was the level of professionalism too low? Should you send more cops? Should an 'A' instead of 'B' be chosen in the multiple choice dialogue? The biggest problem with This is the Police, though, and the one that destroys the whole notion of strategy, is that the choices at hand are nothing more than an illusion.

Screenshot for This is the Police on Nintendo Switch

As an example, perhaps you decide to be the good cop and not side with the local Mafia lord. What happens then? Well, an hour or so deep into this adventure, Jack will end up with lots of ketchup on his back - probably due to the big knife sticking from the centre of it. Furthermore, while some events (crimes or whatever) feel as if they happen randomly, starting a second play-through makes it obvious that these will happen no matter what - every… single… time!

All these flaws combined simply mean that you will soon stop caring, and will realise that the only interaction really is to push the necessary buttons to keep things going, instead of forcing them to go the way you want. In other words, the 180 days required to reach the end will soon start feeling repetitive, as nothing will really test your mettle. Things just… happen, and you simply observe them - and that's not how any videogame should feel like, casual or not.

Screenshot for This is the Police on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

Rated 5 out of 10


This is the Police is basically a visual novel disguised as a strategy videogame. Apart from a lack of any depth in its mechanics, choices don't really matter, as almost everything happens no matter what you do. The story section is a lot better, and the audio-visuals even more so, but these won't be enough to satisfy strategy enthusiasts.




THQ Nordic





C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  5/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   


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