Shaun Munro gives first impressions of SnowRunner on Nintendo Switch…
Arriving on PS4, Xbox One and PC for last year’s enthusiastic reviews Saber Interactive’s Mudrunner tracking LumiRunner is now available for the Nintendo Switch, allowing truck simulator fans to get their repairs in bed, on the couch, in the toilet, or anywhere.
I’ve spent a few hours with the Switch version of the game in recent days and came to the series completely cold but excited – it’s been lingering on my playlist since its original release. Its essence LumiRunner is a paradoxical joy and frustration; the joy of finally pulling a big ass load over a dangerous slope and a huge anxiety from one wrong move by derailing your entire run.
It is perhaps best to think of the game as a vehicle version Death withered; you are given the deceptively simple task of transporting a variety of materials from place A to place B, although the deceptive terrain — be it mud or snow — naturally makes this infinitely challenging. Like Hideo Kojima’s engaging pass-through game, simple navigation becomes a fat puzzle of experience – you have to decide which route to choose, choose the best vehicle for the job, correct adaptations, and even manipulate the environment with a hook or crooked.
I’m still in the early days of the game, and according to the advice I read online, I decided to stick with the mostly Michigan opening area when I got to the details. Fortunately, extensive sandbox-style gameplay allows players to more or less dig their own path through the contracts, missions, and challenges offered. So I’ve spent really little time in the tundra so far, even though the basics of the movement are surprisingly complex, it was certainly the right invitation.
For the sake of clarity LumiRunner is not a game designed for casual gaming; while on the surface it might appear as a relaxing, comfortable recreation place that can be lost for hours at a time, driving a truck or scout between places is often like wading through Teollisuuskatu. Even a little off the planned trajectory can leave you fiercely trying to winch free by all necessary means or even calling another vehicle to do help.
Often, more subtle activities can save the day – feathering the feather in lower gear or turning the bike left and right until you find a sweet place to break away from the swamp – but success involves a lot of trial and error. Given that even on some previous contracts, it can take more than an hour to complete new players, failure on the last hurdle and returning to the nearest garage can prove extremely moral.
Obviously, this isn’t a game you can get anywhere quickly, and patience is definitely a virtue. The first lessons are dizzying learning exercises, usually due to a steep difficulty curve, heavy guidance and physics, an sometimes aggravating camera, and just a wealth of information. On the contrary, there is also a lot at stake No really detailed, and that’s why I strongly recommend new players to peek into the net, where unofficial guides will save you at least a few headaches.
As a result of all this, it is fair to say so LumiRunner not for everyone; it’s easy to feel overwhelmed when you can’t figure out a way to free yourself from an awkward spot, though it’s also easy to understand how this cruel soup is an absolute catnip for simulation enthusiasts. The euphoria of winning in awkward terrain speaks for itself, not to mention the fulfillment of a tough contract, let alone.
What is most confusing, however, is the actual performance of the game on the Nintendo Switch. A saber that used to port Mudrunner platform, deserve praise for reducing the game at all, although the expected trade-offs in performance are relatively serious.
In both palm and dock modes, there is annoying mud on the textures – sorry to say – a huge amount of visual detail has been removed compared to the higher resolution counterparts. Texture is also common, and while the frame rate is stable at 30 frames per second, you can still feel the switch tighten to keep this going, which isn’t ideal in a game where one wrong-footed decision can blow your entire run. . Charging times are also quite long, as switching between locations can take almost a minute.
But my mediocre feelings about the Switch version have as much to do with practicality as with performance; The idea of playing a truck sim handheld sounds great on paper, but in reality it has fewer stars. The game is so full of information that players can absorb, especially in those times that the rather non-intuitive interface becomes quite tedious to navigate over the switch’s small screen. Nevertheless, the Switch’s lightning-fast sleep / resume function facilitates long hikes to smaller, more manageable game sessions.
But given that the game focuses so thoroughly on the importance of the car’s micro-movements, examining your own progress isn’t a very natural fit for a handheld game. Of course, you can simply play a docked game, even though the lack of graphic resolution on the big screen isn’t enough, and I wouldn’t think I could put up with more than 100 hours to offer here.
It will still be some time before I feel comfortable putting numbered dots in the game, if at all, as with PC / Xbox iterations released for the Xbox Game Pass at the same time as the Switch port, I’m not honestly likely to continue playing this version. As such, the Switch release is really only recommended for those who don’t have the means to play it elsewhere. LumiRunner is clearly a rich, detailed experience for the simulation team, but the concessions specific to this port may simply be too much for any other option.
+ Incredible attention to detail.
+ Addictive – if frustrating – game loop.
+ Impressively wide environments.
– Some find the gameplay too frustrating.
– Performance hampers the experience.
– Portable mode is not suitable for the game.
Played on a Nintendo Switch.
The review code was provided by the publisher.