REVIEW: ‘Super UFO Fighter’ Is a Bit of a Misnomer (Switch)

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Super UFO Fighter - But Why Tho

Super UFO Fighter is an action game with an interesting premise: compete as one UFO to more or less score goals against another UFO. Developed by VV-LABO and published by Phoenixx Inc.Super UFO FIghter is neither super nor a fighter. In this very simple game, one button controls your tractor beam and the other controls your attacking mechanic, which you must use to stun the enemy UFO, burst capsules, use temporary power-ups, and throw objects into one goal or the other.

There are two main modes: a story mode and an arcade mode essentially. The story mode takes you through an innocuous tale with increasingly challenging levels and occasionally alternating goals as you play as and against different UFO/alien characters. Each chapter will have you playing as a different UFO, each with a different attack ranging from short-range triple music note blasts to opposable bombs and giant pile drivers. Their mechanics are joyfully diverse, so you have a swatch of options to choose from when you unlock new UFOs at the end of chapters and take them into the arena against other players or computers.

It’s just that I don’t know how long this game could really entertain me in the end. I’d describe it as the type of game that I might have been enamored with on the long car ride from New Jersey to Long Island in my youth on my Game Boy. It would have entertained me and perhaps a cousin together if it were among my few options. But with the endless possibilities for games I could pick up now, Super UFO Fighter isn’t giving me a ton of reason to pick this one.

A principal reason is simply that its name is misleading. This isn’t a fighting game of really any kind. Some mechanics warrant contact between players, but it’s an objective-based action game, not a fighter in the end. Letting the name fool me initially into thinking otherwise left me disappointed when the final product was ultimately just a sort of basketball-type game with extra odds and ends.

Again, it’s not bad for what it is necessarily; there are a good few moments of actual trial and triumph in its unique gameplay. Unfortunately, it also feels like victory and defeat is sometimes based on luck more than skill, making the game increasingly disinteresting as the difficulty ramps up. I wondered throughout whether a slightly larger arena may have alleviated any of that particular concern. The whole thing takes up just the size of the screen and leaves very little room for maneuvering between falling objects, tractor beams, and otherwise.

The sound design is mostly a high point, with a nice 8-bit soundtrack to get you pumping. Its downfall is its overuse of an airhorn sound constantly. It got annoying quickly. Visually, the game is strong. Its characters are unique, the colors are well-stratified to stand out from each other, and the UFO designs are all pretty cute.

Super UFO Fighter is neither super nor a fighter. It’s a perfectly fine game that could entertain for a little bit on your own or with a friend, but a party game this is certainly not, and neither is its difficulty finely tuned enough to feel engrossing on either end of the difficulty spectrum.

Super UFO Fighter is available now on Nintendo Switch and PC.


Super UFO Fighter
  • 5.5/10
    Rating - 5.5/10
5.5/10

TL;DR

Super UFO Fighter is neither super nor a fighter. It’s a perfectly fine game that could entertain for a little bit on your own or with a friend, but a party game this is certainly not, and neither is its difficulty finely tuned enough to feel engrossing on either end of the difficulty spectrum.

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