I’ll have to confess something straight off the bat; I’m TERRIBLE at fighting games. Sure, I can pull off a few moves here or there, I can stumble through a single player campaign on easy, I may even be able to pull off the occasional ‘Fatality’ if I’m in the right headspace (and the buttons are written down in front of me). But when it comes to combos and technique I have very little in my corner. Frame count, twitch reaction, NOPE! All you’ll get from me is a panicked button. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE fighting games. I just know that I suck.
Arms takes a lot of that worry off the table. Realistically you have a limited assortment of moves in battle. You can punch (obviously…), grab your opponent, block, move, jump or dash. That’s pretty much it. Each character does have a few extra abilities to add some variety but once you understand the basic mechanics you are good to go.
You have a few controller options available, as well. You can try your hand at the motion controls using the Joy-Cons. For the most part this feels relatively intuitive, if a little tiring after a while. The major issue is connectivity, but that is a system issue and not the fault of the game itself. Due to the limited buttons needed you can split the Joy-Cons and play multiplayer on the go. My preferred option was the pro controller, smooth and efficient. But if I wanted to smash out a quick game or two, playing in handheld mode was really easy. I think Nintendo have done well to give players as much flexibility as possible.
I’ve had a tonne of fun with this game. It’s gorgeous! All the characters have a cartoony charm that makes them instantly accessible. And it’s all so colourful and fun. My favourite character has to be Master Mummy. Wrapped in bandages and sporting some fetching wrestling trunks, Master Mummy is a powerhouse!
The different level designs all manage to add some variety to matches. Adding different levels, moving parts or simply obstructions to either hide behind or slam your opponents into. One level gives you floating discs to glide around on, like a life size BeyBlade.
There are also some novelty mini games to play. V-Ball, an explosive game of volleyball. if you let the ball touch the ground it explodes. Hoops, Where you play a game of Basketball using your opponent as the ball. And Skillshot, where you stand either side a field of moving targets. Break targets for points and punch your opponent for fun.
Arms has certainly lived up to the hype for me. It does for fighting games what Splatoon did for multiplayer shooters. It’s colourful, fast-paced, non-stop fun. If you own a Switch I definitely recommend you give this game a shot. It’s another solid party game from Nintendo and I really think it could take off in the competitive tournament scene.
What do you think of Arms? Sound off in the comments below or visit us at Geek Mountain: Base Camp.
Arms is available for Nintendo Switch on June 16.