Supersonic Acrobatic Switch-Powered Battle Cars
Rocket League is just one of those games you can pick up and it’ll always work out. You can shoot for goals, race around the field, and do lots of cool flips and tricks regardless of skill level. It’s pretty much the ultimate pick-up-and-play game, and now it’s made the transition to literal pick-up-and-play title.
So how does it fare on the Switch? It’s the same Rocket League gameplay you know and love…albeit with a few more bumps and bruises.
The most important thing to note about Panic Button (the team behind Doom‘s Switch port)’s work here is this version keeps up 60FPS regardless of whether or not the system is docked. And thanks to the online cross-play with the Xbox One and PC users (which you can opt out of if you choose to), getting into matches feels incredibly smooth. I tested it out at different times of the day, and never had to wait more than a few seconds for a match. When someone dropped out (as I was usually audience to), a bot would come in and take their place. I do feel bad for my online teammates since I’m not the best player, and I’d just spend a lot of time driving around in my Mario Bros. cars and enjoying the neat little sound effects from it.
But to get to those 60 frames per second, some visual sacrifices had to be made. It’s more acceptable when docked as it runs at 720p, but it’s almost unrecognizable when playing in handheld mode. The small font even becomes slightly illegible when playing in handheld mode too, as well as the need to sacrifice short trash talking mid-match as typing covers the entire screen.
These compromises, however, are much easier to swallow as Rocket League is just as fun as it always was. Four-player mode may be limited to playing docked, but playing with a single Joy-Con is surprisingly palatable for a game like this. As long as you’re not aiming for the big leagues, the loss of camera control won’t seem like a big deal to you. The jagged edges are even easier to swallow since you’ll be too focused on the goal when in the thick of it. In the end though, it’s going to be a matter of whether or not visual fidelity is a deal-breaker for you with a game like this.
[These impressions are based on a retail build of the game provided by the publisher.]