Rocket League Review - Nintendo Switchin' It Up

You can now take Rocket League with you wherever you go. 

4 weeks ago by Morgan Shaver

Rocket League continues to cement itself as one of the most popular indie games of all time. Aside from the addictive nature of the game’s core multiplayer, Rocket League excels thanks to its unique blend of racing, physics, and soccer.

The game is simple in premise, yet difficult to master. This keeps players coming back for more, as they’re able to watch their skills grow and evolve over time. Additionally, Rocket League is easily accessible across just about every platform from PC to console. It also boasts an active online community thanks to its active cross-platform support.

While this makes the game’s Nintendo Switch release somewhat predictable, it’s nevertheless another triumphant win for developer Psyonix.

The Nintendo Switch has become a bastion for indie game developers, with many noting that their games perform best in regards to sales on the Switch platform. One could argue that due to the game’s established popularity, it has nothing to gain on the Switch.

However, as seen with games like Stardew Valley, if players love a game enough they’ll have little issue buying an extra copy. Granted, there will always be difficulties when it comes to porting an established game over to the Switch, and Rocket League is no exception.

Panic Button—the same developer who ported Doom over to the Switch—helped Rocket League make the handheld transition.

As you’d expect, there were similarities in how Panic Button managed to get Rocket League running on the Switch, including stripped visuals in favor of steady frame rates and performance. The end result is a game that functions as intended, but can feel like a downgrade for gamers who feed on high-quality graphics.

For most gamers, though, Rocket League’s rough edges on the Nintendo Switch are easily overlooked. Especially considering how well the game plays, and its innate ability to pull you in for several hours at a time.

We primarily play Rocket League on the PC, so we were thrilled to be given the ability to play the game on-the-go.

Furthermore, we were able to take full advantage of cross-network play on the Switch, giving us a wider pool of competitors via Rocket League’s PC and Xbox One community. It’s worth mentioning that we experienced a slight stumbling block when trying to chat with other players, as toggling the chat brings up a window that covers the entire screen.

Not exactly ideal mid-match.

As we were transitioning from PC to Switch, this was actually one of our main (and only) complaints. Even though you can connect a USB keyboard when your Switch is docked to help speed things up, we found it easier to avoid custom message creation altogether. Which is a shame as custom messaging is something we use frequently when playing on PC. 

In short, if you can overlook the game’s graphical simplicity and the complications that come from adapting to a new platform, you’ll have a blast playing Rocket League on the Switch. For those who’ve yet to experience the thrills of Rocket League, a Nintendo Switch purchase is well worth the money spent.

On the flip side, if you already own a copy of Rocket League for PC, PlayStation 4, or Xbox One, there’s nothing inherently new on offer aside from Nintendo-exclusive cars and local splitscreen. It all depends on how addicted you are to Rocket League, and how often you use the Nintendo Switch in handheld mode.

If the game is something you simply cannot live without, and you want to take it with you everywhere you go, you certainly won’t regret snagging a Switch copy for $19.99.

Pros
  • Added convenience when playing in handheld mode.
  • Solid gameplay performance with limited hiccups.
  • Just as addicting on the Switch as it is on PS4, Xbox One, and PC.
Cons
  • Toggling the chat can be a pain.
  • Lower quality graphics.