I’m a sucker for platformers. There was a point where I definitely thought the genre was overplayed, but now that I’m older, I can appreciate a good jumping puzzle. I’ve even played a few high quality endless runners that had some clever and fun platforming. But then, there are games like Double Pug Switch.
Okay, that might be a little harsh, but Double Pug Switch is a struggle to enjoy. It starts out well enough: cute dog, evil cat that causes cute dog and evil cat to get sucked into an alternate dimension. In fact, the pug manages a quantum split—or something—and can now switch between two dimensions at once. The cat changed too—from evil, to more evil, changing its name from Whiskers to Sker, and generally being a very very bad kitty.
In Double Pug Switch you play as a pug named Otis who can run and jump. Otis is a dopey doggo who is forever compelled to run forward, even if it’s at his own peril. And he’ll be running into plenty of peril, with spikes, jump pads, accelerators, and other tricky hazards to navigate. Otis’ main trick his his dimensional shifting ability, and its something he’ll have to use liberally to stop Whiskers’—er, Sker’s—rampage.
Double Pug Switch’s best part is its cutscene art and concept. I was absolutely on board the moment I saw Whiskers tipping over the test tubes, and Otis’ dopey reaction. Unfortunately, the great art style doesn’t really make its way to the gameplay itself, with most of the game looking flat, and uninspired. The platforms look like something that I could throw together in Photoshop in a few minutes. Ho-hum art never ruined great gameplay—but the gameplay in Double Pug Switch is its worst part.
Jumping—the only movement you have control over—is sticky. It’s a strange thing that the singular control you have for the game doesn’t even feel satisfying, in fact, it feels just bad. The levels themselves aren’t even that clever. At least there’s collectible coins—gold and purple—that you can spend on hats to make Otis look cuter. But hats do not make a good game.
Double Pug Switch is a mess. It’s not fun to play—at all. It does have redeeming art, and an adorable concept—but it’s all sunk by sticky controls and uninspired art. Pass this one by , there are just much better games to play.
Double Pug Switch is out today on Windows, Nintendo Switch, XboxOne X, PlayStation 4, the Apple App Store and Google Play.
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