a crazy sport for all players

Battle League marks the triumphant return of the mustachioed plumber on the football fields. Mario Strikers is a real institution in the field of arcade football and this third chapter that has just landed on Nintendo Switch is certainly not: the frantic and exaggerated gameplay allows all types of players to participate. above the opposing team. So if even those who are not used to the world of games or are not particularly passionate about football can find their good dose of fun in Battle League Football (to find out more here is the review of Mario Strikers Battle League Football ), in the same way whoever wants to deal with a title that offers a gameplay complexity that is anything but obvious will find bread for their teeth.

Why yes: Mario Strikers, like Mario Kart, is a versatile game and potentially suitable for all types of users. That’s why Battle League is a product that shouldn’t be missing from any Nintendo Switch collection.

Football like you’ve never seen before

Over the years Nintendo has stood out for adopting a very specific philosophy of play: all his productions are packaged with the aim of not cutting anyone and thus be accessible to a very wide audience. A title can be very appealing to very different users: despite the different skill levels and tastes of video games, the goal is to allow everyone to find their own type of entertainment and, in fact, be able to approach seemingly incompatible worlds.

Mario Strikers: Battle League Football represents perhaps one of the most concrete attempts in recent years to propose a “universal” game, and the effort of Next Level Games has paid off. The starting point of football is only a marginal reference, useful more than anything else to provide universal coordinates. You can already understand this from the introductory video: Strikers is a very particular football, which actually has very little to do with the real sport. Each match sees two teams of five players compete each to try and score as many goals as possible in four minutes. This is where the similarities with real football endand with its rules: from the absence of any kind of refereeing to the impossibility of removing the ball from the field, through the use of objects and the possibility of choreographing hyperthyroidism, everything is designed with a look at the simplicity of approach that gives absolute priority to the spectacular.

As expected of any prized arcade title, Mario Strikers gameplay allows even less experienced players to find themselves, in a few games, to start a frantic action of before culminating in pyrotechnic goals. Between extremely harsh contrasts, leaps that defy the laws of gravity, fiery trails and slow-dodge dodging, the action of Battle League Football is so rewarding that it can thrill even those who don’t chew football. In fact, perhaps it would be more appropriate to bring the new Strikers closer to the realm of party games, a sector in which Nintendo has unparalleled dominance.

Party game

We already mentioned Mario Kart, not by chance: the principle is always to minimize the fundamental orders not to confuse the players, but to place everything in a context rich in variables that allow to create a variety of incomparable situations, able to differentiate each game remarkably from the previous one. .

For example, in Battle League Football, objects such as turtle shells, bob-ombs, and invincibility stars perform a dual function: on the one hand, they allow you to add a layer of layers to the game that is independent of the game. technical skill of the users. , on the other hand, allow you to have a powerful means of balancing the fate of a game whose outcome seems to be already written. In short, the choice to use an essential control system, which takes advantage of the use of a few keys associated with the basic actions of football, helps to frame even more clearly the incredible simplicity of Battle League Football approach, a title that takes full advantage of Switch’s potential and its hybrid nature.

The idea of ​​being able to give life to multiplayer sessions also by using a joy-con each is what is expected of a game adapted to the Switch hardware, but in this case Next Level Games he has managed to go even furtherand, making Mario Strikers one of the ultimate local multiplayer offerings. The ability to share the same console with seven more users and shape games where eight players are played in the same room is one of those distinctive features of Nintendo productions, unfortunately now increasingly rare in the modern gaming landscape .

It’s time to get serious!

But be careful: stopping here would mean not doing justice to the potential of Mario Strikers Battle League Football and say only half of what Nintendo’s football mascot really is. To raise another pillar of the Switch library, even the comparison with Super Smash Bros. Ultimate can be helpful in understanding the scope of this sports title. The phenomenal creation of Masahiro Sakurai has been alive with a double soul since its first appearances on Nintendo64 and GameCube.

What can actually be experienced as a complete party game, perfect for local multiplayer sessions open even to players less accustomed to the genre of fighting games, is at the same time a fighting game with a gigantic competitive scene and still active today day. The classic layering of the gameplay of Nintendo productions allows an extremely technical and competitive approach to the game and whoever wants to be able to make what until a few games before was a hobby to share with friends and family become the object of study.

Battle League Football is certainly not and there are many secondary elements, certainly less obvious but not insignificant, that are hidden behind a game only seemingly devoted exclusively to the arcade environment.

For those who want to raise the level of competition, the controlled chaos of the first games gives way to an equally frantic but more structured and reasoned game. In fact, there are some key factors that radically transform the gaming experience, elements that are already introduced in the advanced level tutorials but which are only understood to be useful in dealing with much more experienced players in online gaming. .

Timing, personalization and teamwork

The first of these factors is certainly time. In fact, Next Level Games has decided again reward an aggressive approach to field actions and the player must never stop the ball. To play “first” you need to enter the entries with the right time, just before receiving the ball on the foot, and this allows you to create improved versions of the basic actions, which are much more difficult to intercept.

This obviously means having a very clear view of the game capable of properly arranging the members of your team on the surface of the field and at the same time knowing how to anticipate the movements of opponents, both with empty tackles to create free lanes and passes. , through filters to confuse both defenders and goalkeeper.

The fact that even shots and tackles can be loaded to score more powerful but decidedly riskier actions then opens up to the discourse of individual character statistics and the possibility of modifying their equipment. The choice of the four athletes who will be deployed on the field is not only dictated by the sympathy that is nurtured towards the icons of the great N, but it is a decision that weighs on the overall balance of the team. In fact, each character has advantages and weaknesses, summed up by statistics such as speed, strength, and firepower. By changing the armor of the players, each of whom will bring pros and cons, it will be possible to rebalance, according to your preferences, the skills of the characters on the field, creating alternative versions.

It is up to the player to choose whether to enhance a team member’s strengths or try to correct their most obvious shortcomings. Once you accept the challenges online, you realize how much more complex the situation is than you can try in the local game or against the CPU. But there is a third factor that, once again, is layered and complicates the gaming experience: the ability to share your computer in duplicate even remotely. Sharing half of the playing field with a friend unlocks a world of possibilities that require many new precautions to consider, such as using shared objects, positioning on the playing field, and even implementing contrast. equipment. This action, which involves pushing the other members of the team abruptly through contrasts, is in fact one of the most important strategic innovations in the entire gameplay of Battle League Football, but to unlock its true potential you must first have a good feeling of the game. with your teammate.

An arcade … for a real PRO!

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to layered gameplay in Battle League Football: between passes, fake shots, last-second dodges, and less orthodox techniques (like using barriers to jump opponents to the sound of rebounds), whoever wants to stand out and become one of the best Strikers players you will have to study hard to learn to read the action even in the most chaotic and confusing moments.

But this way of living the game is not mandatory, nor the main one: everyone will be able to find their own dimension, whether cheerful or competitive, within Mario Strikers: Battle League Football.

Leave a Comment