Reviewed On: Nintendo Switch
Also Available On: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox Series X/S, and Xbox One
Price: $29.99 USD
Developer: The Marble Collective
Publisher: The Marble Collective

Release Date: August 17, 2023

Please Note: A review code was provided by The Marble Collective but does not influence opinions in this review.

Growing up in the 2000s, one of the many games that I got to play was Marble on PC during my middle school computer class. I loved playing it back in the day and now, a new title in the Marble franchise is coming onto modern consoles and PC. It was announced earlier this year and is already releasing, which is a great turnaround time for a game. There are over 100 levels in the game, and a lot of them use similar concepts or ideas, but none are direct copies of one another. The game doesn’t have a story to tell, but the way in which it is designed means there is no need to have one. Rolling around as the Marble is just an all-around fun time…for the most part.

Opening menu. Captured on Nintendo Switch.

In the game, there are quite a few things to do. First off, the single-player content has six different worlds that you progress through level after level. Your goal in the levels is to get to the end of the level with the best finish time possible. There are different terrains such as small pathways, ice, gravity-changing spots, and more. In all six of the main worlds, I personally got a minimum of silver times with a good number of gold and a couple of diamond ones as well. On top of the main worlds, there are also bonus levels that you can unlock if you get gold times on a certain number of levels. I personally unlocked two of the four additional worlds based on the number of gold times that I obtained. Some of the times are very tricky and require extremely intensive skills.

Online play map selection. (Random people). Captured on Nintendo Switch.

Aside from the single-player levels, there are other things you can do and play. One of these things you can do is customize the way your Marble looks. You can purchase or unlock different designs, tails, and costume pieces based on the requirements of that specific item. Some of them look really cool, but nothing enhances or changes the feeling of the ball, just the look. I didn’t check out the Weekly Challenge too much but it was rehashed levels already in the game with some alterations. The other thing you can do is play multiplayer where you are working or competing with others to complete a specific objective. I didn’t spend too much time in the multiplayer but I did play a couple of rounds and they were decent, but not my personal style.

Some of the many customization options. Captured on Nintendo Switch.

The music in the adventure was good overall, and very upbeat without any song playing for too long or multiple times in a row. You could also choose the song from the pause menu during a level if you don’t like the one that was currently playing. That is such a great feature that I wish more games had. The audio design was also well crafted with the sound effects throughout the level such as picking up items, using power-ups, checkpoints, or finishing the level; along with a nice clear sound of the Marble rolling around. Overall, the audio was well crafted and something I had no real issues with.

Captured on Nintendo Switch.

In terms of the graphics in the game, nothing is all that breathtaking to be quite truthful. The game looks fine, but it is absolutely nothing to write home about. Maybe it looks much better on PS5 or Xbox Series X/S but the Switch version is definitely fine for what it produces on screen. Performance wise, the game is mostly solid with only an occasional small dip and one bigger freeze that I talk about later. Most of the time; however, the game runs just fine in levels and in the menu screens. In terms of the whole package, it definitely looks and runs well on Switch; but again, there is nothing to write home about.

Captured on Nintendo Switch.

There were a couple of tiny issues that I experienced with my time in the game. One time there was a huge freeze in the middle of a level which made me have to reset the level. It’s not terrible as the levels aren’t too long, but it definitely was a tad annoying. The other small issue was the online play wasn’t perfect as I was matched with random players online but the connection between us, while mostly solid, definitely had frame rate issues. The big issue on the Switch version that I played was a button that says to retry a level once you beat it (the minus [-] button) and it never worked for me. Not a huge thing as you can just scroll to a different level and go back manually; but still hopefully this bug is going to be ironed out soon. There are patches coming for the game, so maybe this is one of the known issues that will be fixed soon. There were no hard crashes within the game which is definitely a good thing.

To unlock the final bonus chapter. Captured on Nintendo Switch.

While nothing in the game is super mind-blowing or super unique in any specific way, the overall package provides a very solid product that I enjoyed. The gameplay in the title was extremely solid, the controls are pretty precise most of the time, and the levels were well designed with many different layers to them. I think for fans of this kind of game, it is definitely one you should pick it up. The approximately 5 hours I put into the game throughout the few online matches, completing the main missions with all of the levels having at least a silver time and a couple of the bonus levels were well spent. The game is out next week and I think it will provide fans of this genre a good time overall. There were some annoyances with the game for me, but it did provide me with the same feeling that I felt playing as a young kid playing on a PC… joy.

One of my Diamond Times. Captured on Nintendo Switch.

Review Score: 7.5/10

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