I didn’t buy a Nintendo Switch for it’s MMO potential but simple ‘get stuck in’ playability that just happens to have the convenience of being portable.
My PS4 handles that side of my gaming (I self banned myself from PC games due to poor time management) but I still fancied myself a multiplayer shooter. Combine that with a Day of the Dead inspired art style and Morphies Law appeared to be a shooter worth looking into.
Morphies Law is a team-based third-person shooter in the style of a typical deathmatch type multiplayer. What makes Morphies Law unique – apart from the cool Day of the Dead influence – is how it handles mass. You see, whatever body part you shoot on your opponent shrinks on them but grows on you. No, you don’t sprout a second head or grow a fourth nipple but the correlating appendage grows in size. It’s ok folks, this is a family show. A better example is this: you shoot your adversary in the head, your head gets bigger. Simples.
Big head, little head, cardboard box
Having a big head or other larger body parts is all well and good but 1) it makes you an easier target and 2) you move slower. On the other side of the hedge is the person who’s just been eliminated. They are now smaller so that makes them the polar opposite – harder to hit and faster to move around. Best of all, even though your character changes in size, the weapons aren’t affected so you when it comes to your character, size doesn’t matter – it’s what you do with it.
I touched upon the art style – a little like Grim Fandango – the characters are robots modelled on sugar skull’s you’d expect to see during the Day of the Dead festival. I’m biased here as that’s an instant win for me. Also, I love Grim Fandango, but that’s a different ball game. There are two teams made up of four in each – a red team and a blue team.
As with most shooters in this mould, your team wins with the most kills (depending on the mode you play). In the background, you’ll notice two large robots that eventually dominate the skies. As you progress, your team’s robot increases in size. When the time is up, the winning robot uppercuts the other robot’s head to achieve the victory. Bonzer.
Games modes and customisation
There are three main modes to Morphies Law which will be familiar to any gamer. The first is the deathmatch style one, named here as Morph Match. The second is a capture the flag type where you have to retrieve one of the giant robot heads for the win. The final is Mass Heist which is in the name – gain as much mass without even touching a protein bar.
Arguably the modes are quite limited as are the maps, but to be honest, I’m happy with this as I tend to stick to the offline mode and only have a go if I fancy a skirmish or demo it to someone to show the mass effect. Ha. That’s not a Nintendo game reference, so let’s move on.
Gameplay should keep you going in any decent game. If you can’t keep ‘em interested in the game schematics, then allow them to customise. Yes, I could happily do the custom bits when designing a character instead of the actual game. The Sims, any WWE game and Fallout 4. Well, the latter was an excellent game but the character customisation might have well have been the game for me. Easily pleased, spoilt for choice, simple or just a combination of the three. Well, Morphies Law has a wealth of areas you can customise however, these have to be unlocked with game progression. And it will take some time.
Local play for local people
This isn’t the game, but you can easily get carried away with tinkering with your skellywag robot. For example, you can customise their face – specifically, left eye, right eye, chin, mouth, nose, scalp – chest, arms, arse – you name it. The model is, of course, 3D and you just paste a design over the top. You can then rotate and resize these designs too. It is pretty endless but as I mentioned just now, it will take a while to do so. Other than changing the appearance of your robot, you can also get upgrades when progressing through the levels and add these like a loadout before each match.
Before I purchased this I read that there were a few technical issues and the game was severely limited. With that in consideration and as per the opening of this thesis about not being bothered about an MMO on my Switch, I had no issue with it and didn’t experience any problems other than being lame at the game. I’m all about local play and AI skirmishes and could care less about the online slowdown. Besides, I’m not entirely sure if there is much of a fanbase with Morphies Law – is it that popular?
Better than Fortnite? Hhmmm.. subjective
The trouble with Nintendo eShop games, if you can call it that, is they get buried by other titles due to the frequent releases. You either need to know what you’re looking for you get lucky with a title being heavily discounted and marketed on the front page. I saw Morphies Law relatively early on and pleased with it.
Would I buy it again? Yes… though I’d probably hold out for the lowest price. It might actually be better to push as a Fortnite type free-to-play game to build the audience. Gamers would probably unlock the upgrades at the same pace – especially if it included in-app purchases – which I am not a fan of. Who is? So yeah, good game. I prefer it to Fortnite, but that’s because of the offline option and I’m also not very good at Fortnite.