Rogue Aces (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Shane Jury 14.02.2019

Review for Rogue Aces on Nintendo Switch

As the Nintendo Switch approaches its two-year anniversary, it's fair to say that a significant part of its appeal is its flourishing Indie developer scene. Considered by many as one of the best ways to play lower budget software, primarily due to its hybrid nature, independent indie games have found critical and commercial success on the system. Not only that, but they usually outsell their console equivalent versions, by a large ratio. One such developer gunning for a piece of this tasty indie pie is British indie studio, Infinite State Games. This is a two man development team, with three games currently to their name; Don't Die Mr Robot!, Fruitorious HD, and Rogue Aces. With Don't Die Mr Robot! proving itself a success on the system, can Rogue Aces dogfight its way to a clear cut victory? Or is it a Kamikaze dive into vicious waters?

Rogue Aces takes the form of a Roguelike game, with 2D aerial plane warfare. The game utilises a large degree of variety within its missions, with no two enemy bases or rival aircraft flight patterns ever being the same. With that said, campaign progression, depending on the mode, tends to follow a set path. Rogue Aces makes use of a clear and colourful palette. It opts for the jollier side of dogfight combat, with energetic music and fun British voiceovers, backed by a silky-smooth framerate and responsive controls, whether playing in TV mode or on the go.

The regular campaign mode showcases the game's Roguelike influence the most. Starting off with three ships for the entirety of the run, players are tasked with liberating small groups of islands from the evil Baron and his armies. This is achieved by destroying numerous strongholds and vehicles like trains and submarines, as well as the biggest threat of all, from rival aircraft. Each objective within a mission is destruction-orientated in one manner or another, whether its enemy bases or the jets currently in the air. However, a decent amount of variety is given with other tasks, too, like safe landings and item collection. Additionally, limited ammunition and fuel requires an occasional glance at the meters for each onscreen, and a periodic return to the starting base to recharge.

Screenshot for Rogue Aces on Nintendo Switch

The game rewards skilful play, as take-off and landing can be done manually or automatically. The former awards more points than the latter. A well-timed ejection from a damaged plane onto an enemy's ship can hijack it, retaining the current number of tries, which is dubbed an Aerial Steal. By default, flying a fighter-jet takes some adjustment, as the movement input is very sensitive, but the control scheme is fully customisable, and once in the skies it is very simple and enjoyable to keep track of enemy craft and aim weaponry in a full 360-degree radius. Destroyed foes often yield ammunition crates, vital for upgrading craft in later levels, as the enemy jets follow the same enhancements.

Rogue Aces primarily targets the single player, and offers an array of modes and features for that purpose. The Training Ground is ideal for new pilots taking to the air for the first time, and it provides simple instruction on easy and difficult techniques alike. The Frontline Campaign offers a grid map of island levels, to emancipate in any chosen order, whilst Veteran takes no prisoners with harder enemies and disabled automatic landing controls.

Outside of those three Campaign offerings, there are other modes too, with a more Arcade-like structure. Survival is a pure last-man standing dogfighting mode, while Bomber Defence demands safeguarding the home-base with bombing weaponry. Then there's Hot Potato, that only allows the Aerial Steal technique as a means of gaining more lives, and Rogue Ace gives full customised stats for the starter craft for an all-out assault on the enemy. The Roguelike structure of Aces greatly complements the instant play-appeal of the Switch, and for fans of the genre this is not one to be missed.

Screenshot for Rogue Aces on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

8/10
Rated 8 out of 10

Great - Silver Award

Rated 8 out of 10

Meshing together the repeat play appeal of the Roguelike game category with a fun light-hearted take on airborne dogfight warfare, Rogue Aces is a joy to play and comes packed with a great deal of content. Newcomers to the genre will find some turbulence in adapting, and the multiplayer potential of the game's setup both online and off isn't realised at all. But for pure arcade fighter jet action on Switch, few games are more enjoyable.

Developer

Infinite State Games

Publisher

Curve Digital

Genre

Shooter

Players

1

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 Out now   Australian release date Out now   

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