Arriving on the Nintendo Switch from Poland based publisher 7Levels, and developer Afterburn comes Golf Peaks, a puzzle game that is a combination of billiards, miniature golf and cards. Originally released on Steam and iOS late last year, this intriguing puzzler finds a perfectly apt home on the Nintendo Switch console! This is our review of Golf Peaks for the Nintendo Switch.
This game’s concept is fairly straight-forward. A set number of tile cards dictates how many “tiles”, i.e. moves, you have as well as what type of moves you have for that level. A level consists of getting your”golf ball” from the starting tee into the on-screen “hole” marked by the “pin” (i.e. the flagstick standing inside the cup). The challenge is served by the fact that the playing field is not always level and smooth. Each level can contain tiles at different altitude levels, water traps, sand traps and even tiles that “eject” your ball into the air. Levels also contain “bumpers” so that banking shots come into play as well.
In this game you don’t just move a linear number of tiles, you can also do things like hop over “x” tiles. Though the move cards are displayed in a vertical fashion you need to decide in what order to play the moves, that becomes the nature of the puzzle. The diversity of each level keeps Golf Peaks from becoming boring. Motivation in Golf Peaks comes in the form of those cases where your ball lands into a water trap or plunges off the edge of the “green”. Satisfaction comes in the form of the sound of your ball plunging into the cup in that lovely video game based golf sound.
Some might be turned off initially by what appears to be simplistic graphics but the use of pastel-like colours, level based colour schemes all backed by a soothing music track, works wonderfully well with the simplistic and fun control scheme. The control scheme makes this an absolutely perfect fit for the undocked Nintendo Switch.
It’s All In The Control
Golf Peaks does indeed support touch controls but using the joy-con controls takes the thinking out of movement so much so that you can focus on the puzzle at hand. The “ZL” and “ZR” triggers move you through the tiled cards to select a move. Use the left joystick to aim the ball on the current tile one of four ways. Select “A” to move. High praise to the development team for also programming in a useful undo function. The “B” button undoes the last move executed while the “Y” button resets the current puzzle to it’s starting state.
Golf Peaks consists of over 100 puzzles (i.e. levels) with the game divided up into 9 worlds (i.e. stages). Puzzles are increasingly more complex within a world with early puzzles in each world being a bit easier to introduce new concepts. If you’re a fan of puzzle games then you should find a sufficient amount of challenge here without becoming too frustrating to “tee” you off.
It’ll take anywhere between seven to ten hours to complete the game, but at a price tag of a mere $4.99 USD the game provides great entertainment value, especially considering how well the game plays on-the-go!