autumn boys was a surprise hit in 2020. Then-indie developer Mediatonic’s take on the battle royale genre starring those funny little jellybean characters took the world by storm during the height of the COVID pandemic. After nearly two years of waiting and coinciding with the free-to-play launch, Fall Guys And last but not least landed on Nintendo’s turf with a solid if flawed conversion.
For those unfamiliar, Fall Guys is a 60-bean battle royale game show. Instead of the usual Battle Royale fare to destroy your enemies to a bloody pulp – or send garbage inside Tetris 99 — Fall Guys is a platform game in which you compete in several rounds of mini-games to take the crown at the end of the show. Think of it as the video game equivalent of Takeshi . Castle (some rounds of which were taken directly in Fall Guys), a show every American may know for its vastly inferior Craig Charles-less version, MXC†
Fall Guys’ matchmaking is broken down into shows; you have the ‘Main Show’ where you and 59 other beans compete solo for an elusive crown, which is also in rotation. You also have the option to compete as part of a team of two or four people to win shards (60 of which make up a full crown). There’s also a selection of alternating show types that range from as simple as three-player squads to specialized shows like Jump Around, which gives you two straight rounds of ‘Jump Club’ (followed by the final variant ‘Jump Showdown’).
The rounds of the game fall into different categories. The majority are races, in which you must maneuver your bean through treacherous courses with only the highest percentage of players qualifying for the next round. Then there’s Survival, in which – as the name implies – you have to survive as long as possible, until a timer runs out or a select number of players are eliminated. Hunt focuses on goals such as having a tail when the timer runs out or spending a certain amount of time within a certain zone, and Logic, which consists of a number of fruit-based memory games. Rounding out these categories are Team and Finals, which are variants of other categories that focus on teamwork or are the final bean.
So what’s new about the Switch version? Other than the obvious addition of handheld and docked modes, not much. All six seasons of content are instantly included, as well as a brand new seventh season ironically dubbed “Season One,” each with a specific theme such as Jungle, Future, or Medieval. Since the Switch release coincides with the free-to-play launch, features new to the game, such as a premium battle pass, are included.
Fall Guys gameplay will not be affected by the switch to Switch at 720p/30fps in handheld mode and 1080p/30fps in docked mode. While we didn’t experience any noticeable frame drops during our time with it, the menus and end-of-lap screens seem a little slower than usual (although this could very well be attributed to server issues, it wasn’t present when we checked other versions of the game) . The big catch, though, is that every other player in the match appears to be rendered at half the frame rate in both handheld and docked modes. While this has no effect on the gameplay, it looks incredibly choppy and sticks out like a sore thumb in the otherwise smooth conversion to Switch.
The Switch release will include cross-play and cross-progression through the use of an Epic Games account, meaning all of your progress, emotes, and costumes (yes, even those of Playstation characters) will be carried over to Switch. If you previously had a copy of the game on Playstation or PC, you’ll also get the legacy pack, which includes exclusive costumes, nameplates, and free access to the first season’s premium battle pass. It’s worth noting, though, that there’s no guarantee that Switch owners will be able to access legacy content like the Sonic and Doom crossover costumes – unless they’re replayed in store, of course.
However, due to the introduction of the premium battle pass and premium currency ‘Show-Bucks’, Mediatonic has made some changes to the previous in-game currency. Kudos – the main currency of the game – is no longer spent after each game and can now only be earned through challenges and only spent on items of common rarity. In addition, crowns – previously earned from winning shows and could be spent on special outfits – are no longer spent, with the sole use being the crown rank system. All remaining crowns of your account will be exchanged for Kudos. For veterans of the game, this is quite disappointing, as Crowns used to be a great reward that allowed you to get the best costumes.
Fall Guys’ chaotic fun is still awesome all these years later, and the free-to-play Switch release is no different, assuming you can ignore your opponents’ choppy frame rates. While there are some disappointing elements associated with cross-progression, those won’t matter if this is your first time entering the Blunderdome. Aside from a few moments of lag and framerate quirks, the Switch version offers a solid way to play if you’re looking for a barmy 60-bean fight and the barrier to entry has never been lower.