Spaceland Rapid Review

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Fast Facts

Title: Spaceland
Developer: Tortuga Team
Publisher: Ellada Games
Website: https://www.tortugateam.com/en/
Genre: Adventure, RPG, Action, Strategy
Platform: Nintendo Switch
Age Rating: PEGI 7
Release Date: 30/10/2019
Price: £17.99 – Rapid Reviews was very kindly provided with a review code for this title.

Ellada Games publishes this game developed by Tortuga Team. Billed as an old-school sci-fi tactics game, will they deliver on their promise of being “the most dynamic turn-based strategy in the spirit of the old school”? Let’s find out!

You start by receiving distress signals and end up crash landing on a planet where the signals came from. Your mission? To look for those in distress.

You only have a certain amount of ammo and action points in this tactics game, so you need to reload your ammo as soon as possible. From the looks of it, one character only has three shots, which seems ridiculously low. Thankfully you seem to have restored HP and ammo at the beginning of each level.

You can redo levels to earn the bonuses from things like finding secrets and earn money from doing so. However, you can only earn money from each level for bonuses once – except for defeating monsters. You’ll still get money for defeating the monsters on each level. You use that money to upgrade your weapons and armour. Additionally, eventually, you’re able to use “chips,” which seem to come from accomplishing tasks for each level, in order to improve upon abilities. 

Speaking of levels, you don’t seem to actually level up. I found this to be a poor design choice. Another poor design choice is that at the end of many levels, you actually have to direct your characters to the exits. Why? There are no enemies remaining from what I can tell. Why make us waste our time going to an exit instead of ending the stage immediately when you reach the objective?

You also seem to be able to switch character turns, as there doesn’t seem to be a designated turn order. So if one character is highlighted, you can choose to take action with another character. This was kind of odd and not explained well, so on a level where one of my characters was trapped, I didn’t realize I shouldn’t be taking turns with just her.

I finally realized it after I ran out of ammo and she was trapped, defenceless, with enemies. I realized this too late. Another irritant is that you don’t seem to be able to move through your allies at all. You have to wait for them to move before being able to get through. Plus you can only have three characters total in battle. I wish we could have one more.

The game is just so boring. Nothing of real interest happens. I had to force myself to keep playing to do this review. The character design is good, which is what drew me to the game in the first place. I also was interested because of the turn-based tactics premise. But it doesn’t deliver well. The graphics are somewhat poor and the maps are somewhat small on the screen (apparently you can zoom in by pressing the right joystick down, but this wasn’t explained).

The tactics gameplay is boring and suffers due to the lack of levelling up. I like to grind the heck out of my characters so I’m super overpowered. Granted I suppose that makes this game a bit more “challenging” as you have to think a bit more about your strategy, but I like being able to do both: grind and strategise.

Boy, I’ll say!

Overall I don’t think I’d recommend this game, for the reasons I’ve stated above. If you’re still interested, I might wait for a sale. I was quite disappointed.

Rapid Reviews Rating

You can purchase Spaceland from the Nintendo eShop on the following link, https://www.nintendo.co.uk/Games/Nintendo-Switch-download-software/Spaceland-1660563.html

You can find and read our reviews on OpenCritic.

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