Posted 10/21/2018

Ubisoft’s latest game for Nintendo Switch has taken the world by storm, and for good reason too.

Within minutes of booting the game up, it’s easy to understand why Starlink: Battle For Atlas is being touted as the StarFox game everyone was waiting for.

Taking a look at the dying “Toys to Life” gimmick that blasted off in a big way with the launch of Amiibo, Skylanders, Disney Infinity, and LEGO Dimensions; Ubisoft stands firm as if to say “It’s only dying because no one has done it properly.” and boy were they right.

 

Opening up my retail copy, I immediately felt like a kid again

There is genuine fun to be had in mixing and matching different ship combinations and weapon types to build your perfect spacecraft.

 

And Starlink takes your decisions into consideration.

Wanna throw that wing on upside down?

 

Sure.

 

Think you need the weapon facing behind you?

 

Go for it.

 

How about attaching a wing onto a wing?

 

Weird, but it works.

 

And you don’t even have to buy the toys.

 

Ubisoft made the correct decision to offer everything digitally, which means no lugging around tons of parts when on the go.

 

Though, with the included Nintendo Switch JoyCon adapter you get a stand to attach your spaceship on that, while bulky, makes it easier to change parts on the fly while playing.

The toys are fun, well designed, sturdy enough that I wouldn’t be worried about letting a child play with them, and exciting enough that they could honestly be played with on their own, game not included.

But the game is why we’re here.

My first few hours with the game have been amazing.

 

Saying I’d want to be playing right now rather than writing these impressions is an understatement.

 

With RPG upgrade mechanics to your pilot, ship, weapons, and bases, as well as offering planetside locations to customize and upgrade, there is plenty to see and collect.

 

Movement and combat feels satisfying, though I did have to adjust my sensitivity for the joysticks.

 

Weapons have elements and damage types, which can be used to create combos such as freezing an enemy with ice rockets then heating things up with a flamethrower to deal a burst of heat damage. 

 

Most of your time will be spent traversing between the planets and space.

 

But fear not, there are no menus here.

 

After a brief tutorial mission you’ll unlock the ability to fly freely and off you go! In a seamless transition from planet surface to outer space, featuring a quick “breaking the atmosphere” scene that makes the game feel more realistic, you can easily move between planet and space without any delay.

 

See a new planet you wanna go to?

 

Just fly there!

 

Done with the planet you are on?

 

Up, up, and away!

 

However, space is vast and you’re not the only one out there, so you may encounter some rogue bandits that are itching for a fight.

 

I believe this is Ubisoft’s way of trying to keep people on track with story missions.

Speaking of missions, there are a ton.

 

Every planet has new objectives to offer, as well as different tasks like scanning the planet’s fauna, unlocking architectural puzzles, defeating enemy bases, upgrading local refineries and bio-research facilities, and crash sites or old cities to explore.

 

Starlink: Battle For Atlas is clearly a passion project from the members of Ubisoft Toronto, and not just another IP to generate revenue.

 

This game fits perfectly on the Nintendo Switch library, and I can’t wait to continue my adventure.

 

Expect my full review on October 30th, and while you’re here, why not check out my latest review on Jettomero: Hero of the Universe!

 

Another space themed game, created by GhostTimeGames, where you play as a clumsy giant robot!

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