Developer: Question

Publisher: THQ Nordic

Co-Op Multiplayer
  • Price: $29.99
  • Release Date: Mar 26, 2024
  • Number of Players: 1 - 4
  • Last on Sale: -
  • Lowest Historic Price: -
  • ESRB Rating: M [Mature]
  • Watch this review on YouTube
    While appropriately profane and featuring some great ideas for customization, Snow Day’s gameplay struggles

    There’s no question that South Park is a unique show that has had a surprising amount of influence over the years. While I found the original short Parker and Stone made on a goof, that started it all, to be shocking and hilarious, I was only able to maintain interest in the show for the first season or two before moving on, a bit bored with it. That said, it’s obvious that many fans have stuck with it over the years, and many new fans have been created along the way as well. With such sustained popularity it isn’t a surprise that a variety of games have also been spawned with the property, which brings us to Snow Day on the Switch.

    The premise is actually one of the game’s strongest points, as it does a great job of mining childhood memories over the excitement of getting the day off of school in the thick of winter, allowing all of the kids in the neighborhood to have some snowy fun. In this case it’s Cartman leading the charge, enlisting your in-game character, known simply as New Kid, to help in his battles against a variety of other South Park characters. Gameplay centers around going to the game’s hub to enlist in missions, optionally join up to play with others online, and upgrade your gear and skills as you go. In combat you’re reasonably capable, able to work melee or ranged as a base, with an additional fart ability that can shoot you into the air as well as do AoE damage, and a healing ability as well. To top it off you’ll also have what’s called a bullshit card that is meant for “break glass” moments when you feel you need to turn the tide of battle. 

    The game’s concepts, and the card system below it, are actually smart and feel well conceived, the issues are more where the rubber meets the road. The most noticeable issue, one that can hopefully be patched quickly, is that the pretty significant amount of cutscene voice work is not synched with the video, and it’s just off enough to be aggravating. Pair that with what can feel like general bugginess around the edges with clipping issues, occasional performance drops, and blurriness and the game either feels like it was rushed or at least not well optimized to look and feel its best on Switch. Finally, while the fundamentals are in place for having a good time, the combat itself can tend to feel a bit too button mashy for its own good, partially due to its overall simplicity, and also because the action doesn’t feel as tightly matched to what you’re doing as it should. 

    If you can be patient with it there’s still fun to be had, especially if you’re simply a huge South Park fan, but I’ll admit the overall effort here feels like a bit of a letdown. The good news is that riding on the fact that the core story conceit is a fun and nostalgic one, and the core upgrade system is well-implemented, that most of the game’s issues could possibly be addressed with some patching. The problem is that historically relying on future fixes being sufficient, or sometimes being made at all, can be a risky proposition. As it is I’d say true series fans will likely still find plenty to enjoy, but if you’re just looking for a well-implemented game it has less appeal.

    Justin Nation, Score:
    Fair [6.9]

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