Tower of Time – Nintendo Switch Review
Tower of Time.. Haven’t I heard of this game before? Hasn’t it been out for a couple of years?
Well.. yes, and yes.. However, it has not been out for the Nintendo Switch until now. Tower of Time has actually been out for the PC for a few years now. Today we jump into the Switch version.
The Game Itself:
The story of Tower of Time is complex and could easily lend itself to being made into a spectacular blockbuster summer movie. It is classified as a CRPG (computer role playing game). The main character (you) is, for the most part, not a playable character. You start off as a young boy but after a small bit of running around, the story advances in years and you are now as overseer of the tower, influencing heroes and helping them to explore the ruins of the tower. It is these heroes that you actually control and play (but make no mistake, you are still that mastermind).
It breaks down like this… The world is in ruins, in total peril. There is a mysterious tower (more like a reverse spire when you see the visual in the game) with many floors and the only way to go is up (which is actually down because the tower is upside down). As you explore you get a sense that something sinister has happened and continues. The rumor is that there is a source of power within the tower that will restore the planet to health… I won’t spoil the story for you, but I will say.. that by the time you get to the end of the game one can easily see that this could lead into an entire multiverse of new games.
When I first heard of Tower of Time and saw the screen-shots, my first thought was “oh, this is a Diablo clone.” I was wrong, very wrong. While the core of Tower of Time is it’s story, combat is as far away from Diablo as it can get. With Diablo (and yes, I realize I am comparing these two games – but seriously, that is how I came to really appreciate ToT and how different it was) combat is pretty much in your face and it happens fast. In Tower of Time combat is more calculated (the official description is ‘tactical combat’) think… Warcraft (not world of) or Starcraft here. You can see combat coming and it’s more of a puzzle than a mash-buttons-and-hope-you-deal-the-most-damage type of system. Your followers (there are several) each have different abilities and while you can use mostly the same ones regardless of the combat situation, some are better than others in certain combat layouts.
You can also pause combat to gather your thoughts, or slow it down, which is very helpful on the Switch when you are playing with a remote.. This leads to the gameplay difference between the hand-held mode of the Switch verses the Joy-Con mode. Not that there is exactly a difference, but the only issue I had with Tower of Time was the combat system with the Joy-Con. Don’t get me wrong, as mentioned, there is not a difference in game play, but there is a difference in how I play combat from Joy-Con to handheld.
With the Joy-Con I found myself scrolling around a lot to select the follower for their combat commands.
With the handheld (it just plays more like a tablet) I would move the screen around with my finger with a great deal more precision and could therefore easily select my follower. The major downside to this is, I have my Switch normally hooked up to a 55” screen TV (which makes this game looks stunningly beautiful) so when in handheld mode, it’s very small.
I’ve mentioned this, but the graphics are stunning and beautiful. The levels are laid out in a very fluid way (and they do remind me of Diablo 3 – sorry I can’t help but compare a little). Combat is, for the most part fun, although I do admit that it’s aggravating as hell to go into combat, fight for 5 or 6 minutes and get to the last follower standing.. and die. I fell like I just wasted that time.
While exploring you will discover treasure, gold, gems, all the cool stuff that your typical RPG has. You can then hit the town to upgrade your items and boost your follower’s skills.
Lastly, let’s talk about the replay value of Tower of Time. The story is the story. Once you complete the game, when you replay it, that story is still the same. Items that you find are random, and combat is never the same and there are different difficulty modes. All of this combined makes the replay value fairly high, but then again… We did run through Diablo 1 more times than I can remember (I just loved watching that cinematic of my character shove the soulstone into my head) and Diablo 3 we have completed more than a dozen times.. So.. I’ll jump back into the world of Artaria after I’ve checked out a couple of more games I have sitting here.
Tower of Time for the Nintendo Switch releases on June 25th, 2020 and it is my understanding that it will retail for about $25.00.
Prepare for a new kind of RPG
Lead the ultimate party of heroes into the Tower of Time, a vertical battleground filled with lore, mystery, and combat. Combining the nuances of classic RPGs with challenging tactical combat, Tower of Time transforms each battle into a puzzle of magic and mettle. Slow or pause time to plan your every move: strategically place your warriors, control the battleground with precise spells, counter incoming waves with devastating maneuvers.
• 7 distinct classes, a complex skill system, rich equipment and alignment systems, crafting, enchanting and more
• Divide the battlefield with walls of stone, manipulate gravity, unleash torrents of flame, and more with myriad spells
• 150 different enemies and 50 bosses, each with unique skills and tactics
• Hand-crafted levels, unique Combat Challenges, multiple modifiers and five difficulty levels
• Gamepad friendly control scheme implemented for console players