Frogun [Switch] Review – Leap of Faith?

The Good

Great aesthetics

Enjoyable boss battles

The Bad

Frustrating controls

Old school in many unwelcome ways

Frogun tries to recreate the enjoyable 3D platformers of the 90s, but something has gone a bit wrong in translation – and what’s left is a well meaning but frustrating experience.

You play as Renata – the young daughter of a pair of explorers. Within mere seconds of starting the game up you’re off on a quest to rescue your parents from within the Beelzebub ruins.

This immediacy is more than welcome after a number of recent 3D platformers which have pummeled us with endless cutscenes and laborious tutorials (Klonoa Phantasy Reverie Series we’re looking at you). 

Frogun is back to basics platforming, with a world map leading you through a number of smaller linear stages to complete – set in caves, crypts, and so on.

You have your standard jump, but the game’s big twist is the titular Frogun – an amphibian grappling hook that can grab enemies as well as walls, with the latter allowing you to bound across pits.

Sadly this tool ends up creating more problems than you’d expect. Aiming it can often be a nightmare, and although there’s always an indication of where you’re pointing it the controls are just too clunky to make it ever feel natural. You’ll often go flying off to your death after pressing the button at the wrong second.

The game does allow you to turn the camera up and down as you wish to make sure you’ve got the best viewing angle, but you’ll often be tiling the camera around constantly – not ideal in later stages where you’re surrounded by moving enemies and obstacles.

There are other frustrations that means we never felt one hundred percent comfortable playing Frogun – race sections which were also far too difficult to be fun for instance. 

These issues are exacerbated by checkpoints in stages being quite far apart. Add in the clunky feel to the gameplay, where going fast often results in death, and replaying sections over and over can sap your enthusiasm dry very quickly.

Despite this Frogun is not a complete bust. If you can sync with the game’s slower and more deliberate pacing it can be a fairly enjoyable test, and there are some great boss showdowns to help break things up.

It’s a shame there are these issues – as there’s clearly been effort made to make Frogun look and sound like a platformer from the 90s – but the clunky feel will just end up putting most players off.

Content writer

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