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Squad Killer Switch Review – Two-Tone Shootin’

Squad Killer Switch Review – Two-Tone Shootin’

squad killer

For many of us, there is a longing for the days of old. A time where video games were simple in concept yet difficult in mastering. Games like Centipede, Pac-Man, and Galaga are some examples of titles that stole many of our coins and loads of our time. Nowadays, these types of games are gone or have received a fresh coat of paint to modernize them. However, thanks to the indie scene, some developers are attempting to relive those old moments, and that’s where Squad Killer comes in: a simple, two-tone arcade-style game with its own wild and difficult personality.

But is this a retro experience worthy of your coins and time like those games of old? Or is Squad Killer just another forgettable arcade-like indie game? Let’s find out!

squad killer

Squad Killer is weirdly a rogue-like mixed with arcade elements. The game is essentially a 17-stage gauntlet where the rooms and boss order are random, and the simple two-tone graphics and janky controls definitely make this feel like an old Atari 2600 game.

Each room in the game, outside of boss rooms, is riddled with windows that will eventually spawn a random assortment of enemies, and you are equipped with your trusty laser pistol with unlimited ammo as you jump and dodge around the stage avoiding any contact with the enemies or the bullet hell-like nature of many of their attacks. A single room, including the very first one, can be overwhelming, and this can be quite discouraging for casual players.

Some rooms are equipped with explosive crates that can assist in battle, but these explosives can be triggered by any bullet on stage, including enemies. This can be quite frustrating if you want to save one of those explosives for later, but thankfully our little Squad Killer is equipped with a grenade as well that can be thrown freely.

squad killer

The game provides no tutorial, which would probably help a ton with some of the ins-and-outs, but the controls part of the menu does help to know what you are about to dive into. Some controls like throwing grenades and knee sliding can be missed completely if you do not educate yourself, and not knowing these controls can be the difference between a quick failure and a solid run.

But Squad Killer‘s biggest problem is its insane RNG. It is nice that no single round feels like the previous, but the enemy spawns on particular levels can be brutal and near-impossible to avoid damage. Rooms like this can destroy a great run, especially en route to completing the 17-stage gauntlet.

Bosses and shops are spread throughout the randomized stages as well. The bosses provide a lot of challenge and require tons of perfect controls from the player in order to survive. The shops offer power-ups that can be purchased with coins obtained from killing enemies, and power-ups can be anything from increased rate-of-fire to more grenades. This is an area that makes Squad Killer feel a whole lot like a rogue-like, but something about the arcade nature of it does not mesh all too well.

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On paper, Squad Killer does not offer a whole lot, very similarly to the arcade games of old, but it is also not asking for much either. This is a one-man show that does a decent job of bringing rogue-like gamplay to an arcade-style game, and it is impressive for what it set out to be.

The game may not be the most inviting or even the most entertaining, but it definitely provides a solid challenge in the midst of its simplicity. It is a cute-looking arcade title with a lot of unique enemy designs, but once again, there are some unfair spawns in the midst of the randomizer that can make gameplay infuriating.

There are unlockable modes like Boss Rush and Stacked Deck that may provide a little more bang for your buck, but the real challenge is beating the 17-stage gauntlet of Main Mode. That is how you will prove if you are the real Squad Killer.

Squad Killer Review provided by Nintendo Link
Publisher: eastasiasoft
Release Date: March 31, 2021
Price: $4.99, £4.49, €4,99
Game Size: 155MB

squad killer

Challenging arcade-style, rogue-like game

Cute, two-tone visuals

Good value


Poor RNG at times

Difficulty is high, not inviting to casual players

Having to reconnect your controller upon starting the app EVERY SINGLE TIME

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