Game Review: Moon Hunters (Switch)

Game Review: Moon Hunters (Switch)

When the words “personality test co-op RPG” appeared in the description of Moon Hunters, I was intrigued. I wanted to find out more about this game.

And thus today we begin our review for Moon Hunters, a personality test RPG which has made its way to Nintendo Switch.

Story and Gameplay

Before you begin your playthrough, you’ll be given the option to choose between 4 different characters with their own standard and special attack (more will be unlocked as you progress through the game), after which you will be asked to pick the village you are from upon choosing your character. The attacks are pretty standard (some melee, some long ranged).

Depending on the character and village you picked, various elements in that playthrough will change (locations that are available, characters you meet, etc). But overall the gist of the story is the same.

Moon Hunters’ story takes place over the course of 5 in-game days. The premise of the game is simple – the annual Moon Feast takes place and the moon (which always rises every feast) does not rise. Panic ensues and you have to set out a journey to find out what went wrong and fix it.

You’ll be able to pick the locations that you want to visit during each of the 5 days. Some locations have merchants, some have really tough enemies, and in some cases, bosses. You can purchase more powerful attacks from merchants by using the in game currency opals which are dropped by enemies.

There’s a small assortment of enemies (mutant piranha plants, apes, monsters, all sorts of stuff) and each type of enemy attacks and moves in its own peculiar way. Sometimes it’s difficult to dodge these enemies as they appear in great numbers, so I was really cautious.

In villages and a few other locations, you’ll be able to speak to NPCs which sometimes ask for your advice (example: . The decisions that you make through these options will shape the world in a different way during the playthrough, the stats you gain, and the personality you get after the playthrough ends.

Here’s an example of one of the personality endings I’ve received. They are really interesting to read:

So as you can probably tell by now Moon Hunters is a game that has high replay value. The full story is slowly revealed after numerous 45 minute playthroughs and the endings that have been unlocked. I personally feel due to the duration of each playthrough it could become highly repetitive and mundane even though every playthrough feels different, which brings me to my next point.

Multiplayer

The best way I feel everyone should be playing Moon Hunters is by playing with a family member or friend. Moon Hunters supports same-screen multiplayer on Switch for up to 4 players with single Joy-Con support.

There are tons of benefits to playing with a friend. For instance, you get to revive your friend in the event they lose all of their health, it’s easier to get rid of the hordes of enemies rushing upon you, and basically makes repeating playthroughs much more enjoyable. You’ll be get to see the decisions that your friends choose and the after effects of their actions all in real time, plus the outcome of their personality. All in all multiplayer makes things much more interesting.

I’d say the same-screen multiplayer has been implemented really well for Moon Hunters, and it’s easy to get a beginner into the game quickly as the controls are simple, everyone has the freedom to do whatever they want in terms of NPC choices, and players can work together effectively in beating enemies and bosses.

Art and Music

For a 2D top down game, Moon Hunters sports a very detailed and beautiful art style which looks like it’s hand drawn. The colors are vivid and animations fluid. Every location looks distinct and unique. Overall I really loved the game’s artwork.

Similar to the game’s art style, Moon Hunters’ sports a scenic and ambient soundtrack that you won’t get sick of. It’s the type of music that makes you think about life.

Performance Issues

Unfortunately Moon Hunters suffers from a great deal of performance issues which I find are important to point out.

The game suffers from a large number of random frame rate drops, which annoyed me to no end. It’s still something that people could live with. The drops become much worse during multiplayer playthroughs. I’ve heard this issue is also present in the Steam version but I’m not sure how serious that one is.

What has bothered me even more than the frame rate drops is the loading time of the game. Booting up the game takes 2 minutes (that’s longer than The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Super Mario Odyssey, and tons of other Switch titles), and transitions between certain maps may take up to 1 minute (Mario Kart 8 Deluxe takes way less to load the next track). This simply gave me the impression that the port wasn’t optimized properly for the Switch.

The long loading times are a huge problem especially when playing in multiplayer mode, because most other multiplayer games on the Switch load really quickly and I may have to pick those over Moon Hunters if I have a short time with my friends.

Conclusion

There aren’t many multiplayer games out there like Moon Hunters on Nintendo Switch. As a multiplayer co-op RPG, Moon Hunters shines in that area for its implementation, depth, and atmosphere. It’s worth the 15 bucks as a multiplayer title.

However, if you’re someone who usually plays alone, you may find this draggy like I did while playing on my own. The game would have been flawless if not for the technical issues, in particular the long loading times.

The Good:

  • Great multiplayer experience
  • Beautiful graphics and music
  • High replay value

The Bad:

  • Technical issues may be a huge turn off
  • Not for people who do not like replaying games over and over

Soup Verdict: The soup could have been better

A review code was provided by the publisher for the purposes of this review.