Publisher: NIS America Developer: Nippon Ichi Software Release: October 13, 2020
Reviewed on: Nintendo Switch
One of the best aspects of the Switch is that it provides an avenue for remakes of games that may have been missed when the game first released on another platform. A great example of this is Prinny 1 & 2: Exploded and Reloaded. Originally released on the PSP, these games are now finding new life on the Switch, and will include all the DLC from the original releases.
Both games revolve around you playing as a Prinny, the cute, loveable, and dispensable demon character of the Disgaea series. In Prinny 1: Can I Really Be The Hero, Master Etna demands the ultimate dessert, and it’s up to you to create the dessert. In Prinny 2: Dawn of Operation Panties, Dood! Master Etna’s panties were stolen, and it’s up to the Prinnys to get them back.
The artwork in both games is beautiful, having a Saturday morning cartoon feel to them. The characters are also brought to life with some really good voice acting as well. But don’t let the cuteness fool you, these games are very tough.
After a short intro to the story, you start off by selecting which level you want to start your adventure on. Each level has a star next to it indicating the difficulty of the level, the lower the star count, the easier the level. There is some strategy in selecting which level you want to start with, because after you beat a level, the star count increases by one for each of the levels you have remaining. The levels are all replayable and have different items when you go through them again. Granted the difficulty goes up, but it can still be done.
The game play is a 2D side scrolling platformer. You have three basic moves for attack: a sword slash that is performed while standing next to an enemy, a jumping distance sword attack where the camera does this pan behind your character giving it almost a 3d effect when you jump and attack at the same time, and finally a ground pound where you jump into the air and do a butt thwomp on the enemy, essentially stunning them so that you can either finish them off with your sword attack or run.
You are given 1000 lives to beat the game and there is no way to get extra lives. If you play the “easier” mode, your prinny will have three scarfs which are basically hearts that allow you to take three hits of damage before the prinny explodes. In each level, you will find checkpoints which will not only allow you to continue from that spot in the level, but will also refill your scarf count too. And thank goodness, because having to start the level all over after dying would make a frustratingly difficult game even more difficult.
The platforming is well done, albeit with a few minor issues. The first is that when you jump, you can’t really control your direction in midair. You can do your distant attack while jumping as stated above, but you can’t change the direction of your attack while you are in the air. The second issue is that you can’t really see below you, so there will be times when you take a leap of faith hoping that you don’t land on some monster, or worse, fall into a pit. The third is the knockback mechanic when you get hit by an enemy. While the game can’t be at fault for incorporating the knockback, it does cause a lot of frustrating deaths.
The boss battles are the highlight of the game. Each boss is brilliantly voice acted and will require you to figure out the different patterns for beating the boss. You will die a few times while figuring out how to beat them, but the good news is that you will not have to start the level over, you can continue at the boss (although, you will need to start the battle over).
Final Grade: B+
Both Prinny 1 + 2 are excellent additions to the Switch. But don’t let the cuteness of the game fool you, these games are rather difficult and will test your platforming skills. If you are looking for a challenge that harkens back to the days of really difficult platformers, these games will definitely be up your alley.
Review code provided by NIS America.