Save Koch Switch Review

A press source reported today that from the 1st of May through to the 15th of May, Save Koch would have a 40% discount on the Nintendo eShop.

As it’s currently the 11th of May, that only gives you … 4 days to save some money and some bacon.

Which got me thinking: do I put out the news piece or shall I just cut to the chase and give you my…

…Save Koch Switch Review

That’s right – I got this last month via an eShop purchase and had a run-through, so let’s revisit this now and see what it’s like.

There’s 40% off for a limited time, so if it’s burning a hole…

The premise of the game is to protect the mortality of Koch; the head of an organised crime family who has told about an upcoming assassination attempt on his life.

You have no way of being able to find out who this person is until you play through the game and extract information from your crew, informants and enemies.

We all love a good anti-hero; from Tommy Vercetti through to Kazuma Kiryu, but Jeffrey Koch lives up to his name and a bit of a bell end.

Save Koch - Mayor
Is it the mayor? Source: PR

He doesn’t instil fear in his ranks but treats them with contempt, so kind of justifies him being worm food.

You could just let him die, but then that would be game over.

Instead, it’s all about survival and potential raging wars with your enemies.

You Dirty Rat

From his panic room, Jeff has a few tools at his disposal: a board that depicts his allies and enemies, and as you progress, more revealing details will appear.

Then there’s the telephone where you can call up everyone listed in your address book.

Sometimes they’ll have new information for you, other times they won’t have anything to say, or it’s a dead line.

Finally, there’s the map where you instruct your ‘generals’ to carry out tasks from observations, assaults and thieving gear.

Once they finish their task, they will divulge some intelligence if they were successful, if they fail, they’ll be idle into you instruct their next job.

Each task takes up a bit of time, so between issuing orders, you can head back to the telephone or analyse the board for your next move.

One such option available is speaking with your second in command, a rat named Burmy, who has a rat army at her disposal who gives advice as well as carries out hits.

Save Koch - Jeff
Meet, Jeff. Source: PR

Can you trust her? Your girlfriend or even the city Mayor?

There are plenty of NPCs to speak with that will all give you their opinion if asked; it’s down to you if you act.

Groundhog Day

No single playthrough remains the same in Save Koch as the perpetrator may change, as do the people you can trust to do your deeds.

As a strategy game, you rely on your tactics to get through one day at a time.

With only six days to play with, the game moves relatively fast, and the clock is always ticking, yet it can also feel very slow-paced in other areas.

When it gets to 9 pm, Jeff hits the sack, and regardless of your current actions, they will be dismissed and do not carry over to the next day.

Most days feel the same with further insight into one of the characters either being someone you can trust more, or completely unreliable.

On that basis, the pace in Save Koch, excluding the ticking clock, is relatively slow – which is a good thing as it allows you just enough time to absorb your surroundings and next action.

However, the story can abruptly end if you miss an event or two, and without warning, Koch is dead.

Returning to the start point, you repeat as before, but because of the tempo, the next playthroughs aren’t as fresh as the last.

Save Koch - Issues
Issue your order here. Source: PR

I Might Go Vegan

I don’t mind pork, but Jeff gives it a bad name as there’s no real desire to save him other than the satisfaction of completing the game.

The anthropomorphic animals in the game are varied, and it’s a shame that there isn’t more scope for them in the game.

That said, there are different versions of them in each new game, so it further instils that element of who to trust.

Visually the game is good, but the lack of scenery and cutscenes make Save Koch relatively flat.

Stuck in a panic room trying to foil his upcoming assassination, Koch comes across as indifferent and what with his 9 pm curfew, undermines any urgency to save him.

There was a bit of conflict with timing in the game as the timer never stops, so if you end up looking at the board for a little too long, you may miss out in a task.

Additionally, you can’t send your minions out to every task as you only have four to play with.

The initial line up is reasonable enough, but you soon unlock other options, including Burmy and her rats.

Save Koch - Board
Board meeting. Source: PR

With each crew member comes various skills; some of them are better at scoping out an area, while others are better at conflict.

This was a good addition to have in the game, but because of the endless ticking of the clock, you end up sending the wrong people for the wrong job as they’re inevitably tied up somewhere else.

Also, as this is a rogue-like, should they die on a job, you won’t have another chance to play them until Jeff is murdered or, heaven forbid: you Save Koch.

Save Koch Switch Review
6 / 10 Verdict
Pros
  • Unique strategy, operating out of a panic room.
  • Many variations on character attributes.
  • No one game is the same.
Cons
  • Unlikeable protagonist.
  • A cut off point at 9 pm every day is frustrating.
  • The pace is a little miss-match slow in some areas, swift in others.
An interesting concept that falls a little flat with the character you're trying to save who appears to be quite indifferent to his imposing doom. You'll inevitably miss out on a few tasks and die a few times without resolve until you eventually get to Save Koch, but he's not worth it and makes me less guilty eating that second bacon sarnie.
Rating

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