Earlier in the year, we had a chance to experience Adol Christin’s latest adventure on the Playstation 4. It was a wild and great journey indeed. Now, Adol’s adventure expands to the Nintendo Switch and PC. As an adventurer of life myself, I felt it would be appropriate to take a look at having the journey on my handheld device, the Nintendo Switch. Does it hold up or will it falter? Let’s take a look at our review!
YS IX: Monstrum Nox
- Platforms: Nintendo Switch (Reviewed), PC
- Release Date: July 6, 2021 (NA), July 9, 2021 (EU), July 16, 2021 (ANZ) ● Genre: Action RPG
- Genre: RPG
- Publisher: NIS America
- Developer: Nihon Falcom
- Audio Language: English / Japanese
- Text Language: English / French
*Special thanks to NISA PR for providing a Nintendo Switch review Key and sorry about the delay in the review*
Note: most of this review will be similar to the Playstation 4 review. The key differences will be in terms of gameplay (load times, fps, etc) and visuals. Everything else will more or less be similar.
From the official website, here is the story:
Renowned adventurer Adol “the Red” Christin and his companion Dogi arrive at Balduq, a city annexed by the Romun Empire, only for Adol to be detained before setting foot inside. While imprisoned, he meets a mysterious woman named Aprilis who turns him into a Monstrum, a being with supernatural Gifts and the power to exorcise monsters. Now, Adol must ally with his fellow Monstrums to fend off the fearsome threats emerging from a shadowy dimension called the Grimwald Nox, as well as unravel the mysteries of the Monstrum curse, and the truth behind the unrest within Balduq.
Veterans of YS games understand this is a very familiar trend. Adol will end up in a location, some event occurs, and Adol gets tossed into his latest adventure. This is less of a trope and more of a franchise staple. It is the life of an adventurer, as they seek the adventure no matter where they go. With players taking the role of Adol Christin, the world’s most famous adventurer, this is a must. In YS IX, Players will experience a well-crafted story that is properly delivered and well-paced.
However, we are reviewing the Nintendo Switch version! We will be on the go on our own life adventure while experiencing Adol’s adventure on the go! How does it perform? Let’s check out the gameplay!
As stated in our Playstation 4 review, the gameplay in YS: IX is very straightforward. The controls from the PS4 version are mirrored in the same button placement on the Nintendo Switch (the difference being, they are just called different buttons). It is a very easy transition if you are playing it from one console to the other. If the Nintendo Switch version is the only version the player is experiencing, they will be able to learn the controls quickly. YS games have very simple controls and are quick to pick up.
In terms of gameplay performance, the game suffers quite a bit. Loading from area to area takes some time, loading in from the main menu into the game takes time, and loading, in general, takes some time. It is nothing extensive, but transitioning from the PS4 version to the Switch Version, there is a clear difference. Additionally, the first thing the Switch player will notice, the FPS of YS IX drops in several areas. I do not think it even maintains 30fps at any portion of the game.
However, this is the difference here. When the Switch is docked, the game remains more or less a solid 30fps consistently throughout the entire adventure. However, going handheld mode with the Nintendo Switch, the performance is the issue. The game struggles to maintain a solid 30fps in handheld mode in several areas of the game, especially areas with a ton of action. I am a primary handheld player when I use the Nintendo Switch, so while I’m thankful we can take Adol’s latest journey on the go, I gotta deal with the performance issues. It is not game-breaking or immersion-breaking, it is just annoying. However, it is a marvel that YS IX is working on the Nintendo Switch so players who are like me and go handheld mode, just be wary of those performance issues.
One day these NISA ports to the Switch will not take a hit in performance, and when that day comes, I will be loving it.
Audio and Visual:
Audio-wise, YS IX still sounds as fantastic as it does with its Playstation 4 Counterpart. It doesn’t matter if it’s the handheld mode or the docked mode. The sound is still fantastic, along with the MasterCraft voice work.
Visual wise, docked or handheld, the Nintendo Switch version takes a hit in the visual quality. It is nothing that is immersion-breaking, but it is obvious where it takes the hit. I hope one day with these NISA ports the visual quality doesn’t take hits.
Ys IX was one incredible journey. Though it is a shorter game in length than Adol’s previous adventure, the quantity is not what matters. Ys IX is a quality game with a great story, simple gameplay, and an ambitious adventure for our hero. At the end of this game, I found myself wanting to return to it once more while awaiting the next big adventure. I look forward to where Adol goes next. With the addition of the Nintendo Switch port, I can now take this adventure on the go. It has obvious issues, but it is still a fantastic game all around with a very playable port.
- Until next time, Mgs2master2 out!
*Special thanks to NISA PR for the review key!*