Dodo Peak (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Athanasios 01.09.2020 1

Review for Dodo Peak on Nintendo Switch

Dodo Peak is a relatively unknown, arcade-y action-puzzler that hails from the realm of Apple's game library - like many more, relatively unknown, arcade-y action-puzzlers. Maybe its arrival on a Nintendo console might do the trick, and increase its popularity… or maybe this wasn't such a fun experience to begin with.

Oh, no! The dodo eggs have been lost, and the Dodo-Mom must get them back to the safety of the hut/nest that resides in the peak of the tiny mountains that are the 60 stages on offer. This translates to moving in a top-down isometric, Q*Bert-y kind of way (that occasionally makes it hard to "read" the screen, and die from an incoming boulder), grab them, and head back home, while avoiding any angry animals and deadly traps, while also using whatever power-up appears in Dodo-Mom's way. Add a typical, three-star-style list of objectives, and you got yourself a fun, addicting, arcade-esque pastime.

…Or maybe not. Dodo's Peak isn't very enjoyable. While an action game, at its core, this is more like a puzzler, in that, although everything happens in real-time, the player is basically tasked with finding out what's the best route towards the eggs, and then back again, but that's more like a matter of trial and error than actual puzzle-solving skills. The first couple of levels are quite simple, but as one goes past level 20 or something, it becomes almost impossible to complete a stage in one try, as the only way to win is to keep on "improving" the path you've decided to follow.

Screenshot for Dodo Peak on Nintendo Switch

It can be frustrating how the Dodo must keep many balls in the air, with traps almost everywhere, enemies moving around the crammed level structure, not to mention the one-hit-and-they-are-dead baby dodos that follow their mother around - it's important to understand that this isn't a moan at the difficulty at hand, but at how this plays, as the challenge usually emerges out of the annoyingly constricting level design, and how sensitive the controls feel, as it's easy to "overshot" the Dodo-Mom's movement by pressing a direction for a millisecond to long, which can lead to one more annoying death.

In all honestly, this became much more enjoyable somewhere around World 3, were the new crab enemy would move only whenever you would do so, as in a turn-based game, forcing you to actually stop for a second and form a plan… but that wasn't enough to save this. In other words, you'll lose all interest in doing almost anything beyond grabbing the eggs. Extra objectives to get three stars? No thank you, the gameplay is enough aggravating as it is. One more attempt to get a better time? Honey, Dodo-Mom struggles to find the incentive to save her children, why should it try to do it again but faster?

It's really sad that that's the case with Dodo Peak, because, while not an enjoyable title, it's definitely a decently-made one. There's nothing wrong with it from a programming point of view. Even the sensitive controls mentioned before, they aren't clunky, problematic, or whatever - they just aren't suited to how this plays; and even the visuals, while lacking a unique art style that would give this character and bring it to life, are pleasing to the eye… in their lifeless, generic kid's toy kind of way. Moving Pieces Interactive can do better than this. This critic will be waiting.

Screenshot for Dodo Peak on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

4/10
Rated 4 out of 10

Subpar

Torn between its two sides - the arcade-y, and the puzzle game one - Dodo Peak just doesn't manage to please. The level design is more annoying than challenging, with the gameplay leaning very heavily towards trial-and-error. This isn't badly made… just not as well though-out, probably.

Developer

Moving Pieces Interactive

Publisher

Screenwave Media

Genre

Action

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  4/10

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   

Comments

This is so sad... makes me long for a new DodoGo game... but the creator of that was snapped up by Ubisoft, so never going to happen Smilie

Adam Riley [ Director :: Cubed3 ]

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