Run the Fan (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Luke Hemming 18.01.2020

Review for Run the Fan on Nintendo Switch

Developed by Silesia Games, Run the Fan looks back on the days of Screwball Scramble and Labyrinth to entice those poor souls growing up who had to deal with endless nights of ball jumping, instead of having a console into playing an experience that marries the two. Those were never fun, no matter how much Nintendo-starved children tried to lie to themselves. Surprisingly, though, this is.

Run the Fan never really aims to put a spin on the idea of *ahem* ball manipulation, but simply updates it for the electronic age. Players look down over an open PC with all the usual components you'd expect. Electrical current is discharged from one end, and bombs along the circuit board until reaching a break. Navigating the ball between these two connections will allow the current to continue travelling towards the fan of the games title, turning it on. It's as simple as that, but as with most addictive games you pick up and play, that's usually all it needs to be.

With no spikes in difficulty as you progress, a smooth learning curve is applied over the 50 levels available, adding new components to navigate, multiple fans to get spinning, and differently timed currents being released across the board as the level progresses. With its simple concept, the challenge has to come from elsewhere. With the factors previously mentioned being amped up throughout, reflexes both physically and mentally are tested - fairly but quickly. No issue with the controls, and the ball does feel weighty as it rolls around the tower.

Screenshot for Run the Fan on Nintendo Switch

With Run the Fan evoking strong memories of the table-top mazes of yore, it feels like a huge missed opportunity that there is no motion control implemented in any of the play schemes. With the option to tilt the PC instead of the ball, it could have made for a much more involved experience. It's worth noting, however, that this was most likely considered and scrapped for an easier, more accessible playstyle. Still, an option would have been nice.

The aforementioned lack of polish stems from the menu screens both when starting the game, and progressing to the next level. A minor gripe is how basic these all look - dull, unimaginative command boxes that would be more at home on a free mobile title. These menus don't really distract from any of the gameplay, but it seems very surprising, considering how good the many parts of the PC system you navigate look, that it hasn't been carried over to something as small as continue and quit buttons.

The pick up and play factor is a massive draw here, of course, and for the minimal price point, a great distraction for a few minutes, if your latest epic is starting to frustrate and a break is needed to reset. All the mental stimulation is here of course, but with short, sharp level design, none of the frustration.

Screenshot for Run the Fan on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

7/10
Rated 7 out of 10

Very Good - Bronze Award

Rated 7 out of 10

A unique concept allows Run the Fan to stand out among a lot of the indie puzzlers out there. It also helps that besides the menu screens, running in both docked and handheld mode, it looks fantastic. Perhaps a future port onto one of the many VR systems out there could also give it the control scheme it sorely feels lacking in. Hopefully, in terms of the Nintendo Switch, some DLC will be released with a control patch to lengthen the enjoyment that can be squeezed out of it. Fun to play in short bursts, with only a few minor gripes that run throughout, this presents itself as a challenging but fair distraction that is well worth a purchase.

Developer

Silesia Games

Publisher

Silesia Games

Genre

Puzzle

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  7/10

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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