Xeodrifter Switch review - The Metroid-inspired exploration game soars on to Switch, but does it land?
| Xeodrifter

Are you even a game developer if you haven't made a 2D Metroid inspired rogue-like platformer?

Of course you are, that was a stupid rhetorical question.

Xeodrifter is Renegade Kids' latest pixel project and its second offering to the games world following ‘Mutant Mudds'. It's a 2D side scrolling platformer with a sweet artstyle.

The premise is simple - your little space dude is plonked in to a square of universe with four planets to choose from. The aim of the game is to repair your ship, so you need to explore each planet in turn, looking for parts.

Although you can land on any of the four planets, you can only progress on one of them to begin with, so enjoy figuring that out.

Give me strength

The main issue I had with the gameplay is that there is no easy way to recover health, in order to have full HP before confronting a boss. This would be alright, if the game was fundamentally enjoyable to push through at the start - which it isn't, really.

You only have a maximum of three hit points to begin with, so you need to carefully navigate through the level and avoid getting hit by the paraphernalia of little enemies en-route.

If you do get hit, then prepare to be one-shotted by the magenta coloured space-dragon boss.

Or the red one. Or the green one. Or the black one.

What I'm saying is that each boss battle is exactly the same. Then again, Samus Returns only really had Diggernaut to write home about as well.

It's not all bad

Xeodrifter isn't a bad game. The design is lovely, and the controls feel as smooth and manageable as they should for a fun platforming experience. The game has some neat collectibles, but they're a struggle to obtain.

The soundtrack is also pretty neat.

I appreciate that Renegade has tried to create a 2D, retro-styled take on space exploration, but the basics of the game just make it a little too difficult to explore properly.

I found myself actively not wanting to explore more of the levels, should I lose precious health points for the next colourful dragon blob.

A lacklustre approach to exploration, repetitive boss fights and a constant struggle to hold on to HP makes for a reasonably draining experience.

Xeodrifter Switch review - The Metroid-inspired exploration game soars on to Switch, but does it land?

There are some neat ideas in Xeodrifter, but they never come together to make a coherent whole
Danielle Partis
Danielle Partis
Danielle Partis is Editor of InfluencerUpdate.biz. She was previously the lead content creator for TeamRock Games, as well as contributing to outlets such as Metal Hammer, both online and in-print. Prior to that, Danielle worked as a freelance PR consultant and freelance journalist for a number of outlets.