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Friday, June 21, 2024

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Review: Midnight Deluxe (Switch)

Apparently, the folks at Petite Games and Ratalaika Games aren’t done with 36 Fragments of Midnight. Released on Switch months ago, it’s now getting a successor in the form of Midnight Deluxe. It’s easy to assume this would basically be the original game with an increase of levels to play through, but this game is actually a lot more than that. In fact, it’s pretty much in its own ballpark once you get past the aesthetics.


Midnight Deluxe, unsurprisingly, looks exactly like 36 Fragments of Midnight. It has a serene, peaceful nightly setting. While it hardly ever changes, if at all, what’s shown is pleasing to the eyes. The visual effects (namely the trail left behind by the player character) are also soft, but lovely additions.


Accompanying the nighttime setup is the piano-only soundtrack. It can probably bore you if you’re not a fan of piano, but I find it to suit the setting nicely. Don’t expect to hear anything else, though; sound effects are at a minimum.


What passes itself off as a sequel/upgrade to 36 Fragments of Midnight is actually a 2D golf game made up of the same assets. You fling the character like a golf ball across a big amount of single-screen levels using either a controller or the Switch’s touchscreen. The fewer strokes you use to get to the hole, the better your ranking for the level. The variety of layouts and obstacles provide a healthy challenge for players to overcome, but what’s not-so-healthy is the emphasis on trial and error.

Yes, I’m bringing this up again. It’s rather eerie how many games lately think forcing a player to restart the level is part of the challenge, but here we are. Midnight Deluxe has boulders that you have to race quickly, hazards that are very hard to distinguish from the grass, and the fact that you die in a golfing game in the first place. Yeah, it’s safe to say this game could have been a lot better if these things weren’t present.


It’s a better game (and certainly much longer) than 36 Fragments, but Midnight Deluxe still has a way to go before being I could give two thumbs up instead of leaning on one. If you have fun with these kinds of games regardless of the major hurdle, go right ahead and give this one a try. I’m mainly here to provide a heads-up.

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