Game Freak are probably best known for making the Pokemon franchise. However, they’re not a one trick pony. In 2016 they released the stellar Giga Wrecker on PC. Now, the game is also available on Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and also PS4. This review will be focussing on the Switch Version.
Giga Wrecker Alt is at its heart a platforming game with some rather impressive puzzle/problem solving elements to it as well whilst controlling the cyborg Reika. It sounds bonkers, and it is, but in a good way. The platforming is fluid, and yet also a challenge when mixed with the puzzle element of the game.
The puzzle element of the game is really rewarding, not unlike The Cave from a few years ago. This is by way of using rubble already collected and smash up the surrounding area in order to jump up onto a platform, or knock down a wall.
There are some sections that have a time travel feature, so if you mess it up, you have a chance of trying it all over again. This is actually quite a nice touch, and the presence of these time travel orbs should be enough to let you know that there’s a chance you might mess it up.
Combat is also a charming affair. Given that there are quite a few parts of the landscape that are destructible, by reducing it to a pile of rubble you can then form a ball of terror and use this to destroy your foes. Once said foe has been reduced to rubble, you can then add their constituent parts to your previously formed ball of terror to make it even bigger.
A nice touch to this is that enemies will glow blue when said ball is big enough to destroy them. This means that you should hopefully have a fighting chance against them.
Graphics and Sound
The game looks beautiful in both portable and docked mode. Whilst playing in both modes, there was no noticeable slowdown observed and there wasn’t a degradation in the graphics either when playing in docked mode. In terms of its visual style, it does actually look a bit like a more stylised version of the Pokemon cartoons from the late 90s which certainly isn’t a bad thing.
The sound effects are also on point, and they do help to really make the destruction going down on the screen seem that much more immersive.
The Alt version
Since the original game is a few years old now, Game Freak have been extremely kind added in more than 20 levels to sweeten the deal and lure in new buyers. Tied to this is the addition of Dolma the robot who is able to lend a helping hand when it comes to the trickier puzzles, which to be fair, there are a few of. As is the way of things these days, there is also a hard mode included in the game, dubbed ‘Iron Man’, the name of which is surely in part thanks to the rubble containing iron. It’s just a shame that Iron Man by Black Sabbath doesn’t play constantly whilst on this mode.
Giga Wrecker Alt really is a charming platforming puzzler. It’s great in short bursts or longer playthroughs, and is a refreshing change of pace from the Game Freak team when they’re usually putting out Pokemon games.