New Super Lucky's Tale for the Nintendo Switch offers a brief but enjoyable return to the cartoon world of classic '90s platform games.
New Super Lucky's Tale is a 3D platformer that is a throwback to a style of gameplay that was popular in the '90s. Unlike games like Yooka-Laylee, New Super Lucky's Tale manages to capture the essence of what made the classic platform games on the Nintendo 64 work, even if the experience is over all too soon.
New Super Lucky's Tale stars a fox named Lucky whose homeland is attacked by a feline sorcerer named Jinx. Lucky teams up with a group of heroes called the Guardian Order, in order to keep the mystical Book of Ages out of Jinx's hands. The final battle between the Guardian Order and Jinx's soldiers is interrupted when the Book of Ages creates a portal to another dimension. Jinx and his followers are dragged into the portal alongside Lucky, who becomes trapped in a mysterious new world. It's up to Lucky to search for the missing pages of the Book of Ages in order to create a portal home while defeating Jinx's followers along the way.
The gameplay of New Super Lucky's Tale will instantly be familiar to fans of the platform games on the Nintendo 64. The game is broken into hub worlds that contain entrances to levels and secret items for the player to find. The goal in each hub world is to acquire clovers from the levels that can open the doorway to the next world, which will be guarded by a boss monster. The individual levels all have different collectibles to find, including clovers, hidden pages, gems, and letters that spell out Lucky's name.
Lucky has the ability to double jump and slow his descent by spinning his tail, but his most interesting power is his digging skill, as he can burrow under the ground in order to bypass obstacles. The digging skill is a great addition to the game and it adds an extra layer to each stage's design. Gamers have wanted a return of the classic 3D platform game genre for a long time and New Super Lucky's Tale scratches that itch, with lots of well-designed levels that are filled with secrets to uncover and collectibles to find. The graphics in New Super Lucky's Tale are gorgeous in their cartoon style, the soundtrack matches the playful tone of the story and the controls are tight, making the game a joy to play.
The biggest problem with New Super Lucky's Tale is its short length, as the game can be finished in a few hours. The game is also very easy, with most stages posing little challenge. New Super Lucky's Tale is the perfect title for a younger gamer, but the more experienced platform game fans might find it lacking in challenge. New Super Lucky's Tale does include the DLC from the first game, which adds several difficult post-story levels, but even these only offer a few more hours of extra content.
New Super Lucky's Tale is an updated version of a game that was released for PC and Xbox One in 2017. The graphical fidelity of New Super Lucky's Tale hasn't been compromised in the transition to the new system and the game doesn't have any major recurring performance issues, but there is a big problem with the load times. New Super Lucky's Tale has incredibly long load times for a game of its type. These issues become more pronounced during the post-game when the player is likely to die several times in succession, making the load screens more noticeable.
New Super Lucky's Tale is an enjoyable throwback to a bygone age of 3D platformers. Lucky's adventure might not last for very long, but there is a lot of fun squeezed into its short runtime. The Nintendo Switch has some incredible platform games and New Super Lucky's Tale fits in alongside games like Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze and Super Mario Odyssey. It's just a shame that the time spent with Lucky is so brief.
New Super Lucky's Tale is now available Nintendo Switch. A digital copy of the game was provided to Screen Rant for the purposes of this review.