Two Point Hospital: Jumbo Edition (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Az Elias 16.04.2021

Review for Two Point Hospital: Jumbo Edition on Nintendo Switch

No question about it: anyone that was hooked on Theme Hospital back in the day was always going to be equally addicted to spiritual successor Two Point Hospital. With the original development team getting together to form a new studio, the healthcare management simulator was born anew. The Nintendo Switch has been a great little home for would-be hospital administrators since its release a year ago, yet with a bit of download content wriggling out since then, this all-in-one Jumbo Edition is as good a time as any for others to pick up a stethoscope and get diagnosing!

If there is one thing that has come out of the past year, it is everyone suddenly becoming an expert in the field of life-threatening viruses. Of course, the release of Two Point Hospital on Switch was not supposed to coincide with a real-life pandemic, but its light-heartedness and brilliant sense of humour offered a necessary dose of positivity in relation to the world of healthcare, as well as a sort of escapism from the harsh reality of it. Whether you have had any experience of caring for others that are sick, have worked in hospitals and are privy to the day-to-day running of such a workplace, or just enjoy management sims, this Theme Hospital spiritual successor is the ideal time sink to play in short bursts or for long stretches.

As detailed in Cubed3's review of the standard game last year, it is rather easy to get stuck in and building your very first hospital. Even for an inexperienced simulation player, the tutorials and tools for building are simple enough, working decently with a controller. The nature of these titles means they will perform and work better with a mouse and keyboard, but the process is replicated as good as it can be on console, despite some gripes here and there when placing objects or trying to pick up a staff member. Small text can be difficult to read, especially in handheld mode, and the lack of options for that is a big shame. The touch screen is null and void, too, which feels like a missed opportunity in some ways. Even if it might get too fiddly to drag and drop items and build rooms with it, its potential use as a camera tool or to scroll through menus and lists at speed could have worked well.

Screenshot for Two Point Hospital: Jumbo Edition on Nintendo Switch

In general, gameplay operates smoothly, and the freedom to rotate the camera, move it around, and zoom in with the analogue sticks means it is effortless to keep tabs on what is going on around the hospital that has taken shape. That said, the game has a tendency to pause or freeze for a good few seconds at random times, especially upon resuming play from the Switch home screen. It used to be that the software would crash completely during long play sessions, although that looks to have been ironed out in a recent patch (fingers crossed it stays that way).

There is certainly a knack to the way players must try to stay afloat as the ultimate healthcare organisation administrator. It is so easy to end up in debt and for it to spiral out of control to the point it seems impossible to pull yourself out of that hole. Loans can be taken out in desperation, but that doesn't always solve the problem and can even make things worse. A lot of care must be taken to establish which types of medical rooms need to be built, which types of staff should be hired, what to train these employees in so that they churn out the best performances, the prices of care and salaries of staff, and a whole lot more. By manually pausing or speeding up time, you can give yourself the break necessary to think about planning and work out where attention needs to be turned to.

Screenshot for Two Point Hospital: Jumbo Edition on Nintendo Switch

When the hospital gets up and running in a functional way, with money being brought in successfully, you can concentrate on the individual tasks each level asks of you in tandem with curing the bizarre illnesses patients come in with. This usually involves successfully fixing up a sudden influx of citizens with a particular problem, which has the potential to place extra stress on the hospital if you aren't keeping on top of things. Other objectives could be the organisation CEO coming to mooch around the place (so hygiene and attractiveness must be of high standard), a certain number of staff might require being trained up to gain new abilities, or staff happiness might need to be sitting above a threshold. Hospital reputation rises as a result of these successes, in turn leading to more patients walking through the doors and more money filling those pockets. Star ratings are the main targets to hit, with the three-star rank being the ultimate goal for each stage.

As long as operations are kept steady, objectives can be tackled one at a time, but a good player must acknowledge when not to risk taking on tasks that will overwhelm them, else losing those reputation points and making staff and patients angry. These little challenges have a tendency to grow repetitive over time, however, and sometimes it's just best to ignore them, instead concentrating on curing the patients that are already flowing in, unless confidence is high.

Screenshot for Two Point Hospital: Jumbo Edition on Nintendo Switch

Thankfully, with a bucketload of past download content included in Jumbo Edition, a lot more varied levels add a lease of life. On top of a whole host of new visual and non-visual illnesses to cure, these stages present very different locations and tasks to stay in control of. Limited space and rooms to build test the management skills here, and natural disasters like hailstorms and volcanic eruptions throw massive spanners in the works, damaging equipment and causing mayhem amongst citizens.

With the Bigfoot DLC, patients don't pay for their treatment, but for being hired by the yeti himself, you'll earn cash for meeting milestones, such as curing a certain number of patients. Mixing it up further, the Off the Grid DLC means players must not only cure patients, but maintain a strong Wellness Index as part of the initiative to create a greener county, meaning extra emphasis must be placed on cure rate, hygiene, reputation and more.

While some of the extra content is great fun and puts fresh twists on procedures, not every stage is welcoming, especially those ones where space is limited and challenge is lacking. It remains to be seen whether other expansions that have been released for the Steam version will get added to the Switch's Jumbo Edition for free or if they will even come to the platform at all.

Screenshot for Two Point Hospital: Jumbo Edition on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

7/10
Rated 7 out of 10

Very Good - Bronze Award

Rated 7 out of 10

Two Point Hospital naturally plays better with a keyboard and mouse, but Switch suits this Theme Hospital successor wonderfully well. It might be difficult to read or see particular texts in handheld mode, and the controls can take a little adjustment time, but any management sim fan owes it to themselves to check out this game. Technical issues, a degree of tedium in base game content, and the fact this supposed all-in-one edition is still missing some recent expansions aside, the variety of stages thanks to the included DLC and wealth of silly humour deliver a fun twist on what is otherwise a difficult field to work in.

Developer

Two Point Studios

Publisher

SEGA

Genre

Simulation

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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