Troll and I appeared on consoles back in March this year but the Switch version was delayed, presumably to make it better. Unfortunately, the extra time hasn’t done it any favours.
The first thing I noticed on the Switch version of Spiral House’s adventure game is the frame rate. It stutters along like an old banger ready for the scrap heap. I had to hard reset the Switch, which improved things slightly, but still made the experience poorer than it should have been.
Once into the game itself, you’re introduced to the main character, who finds himself caught up in a strange forest fire where his mother is trapped and where he meets a troll for the first time. The section acts as an introduction to the crafting and combat in the game, though it seems to go on for a little longer than necessary, not helped by a crash which required another hard reset to get past.
Soon enough you meet the troll again and work out that a bunch of evil corporate guys are after the whole troll community. The game switches from a basic survival adventure to a co-op puzzle with combat and platforming elements. It certainly provides a great improvement and is quite enjoyable at times, figuring out how to traverse areas with the use of the troll and the boy.
Puzzles range from the banal to the interesting, though often involve switching characters several times and getting them lined up, which also involves getting the right camera angle to see what you’re doing. The crafting does add a little to the game but also gets annoying in its repetitive fetching of sticks and other items needed to craft weapons.
But the story also seems to have been pushed at an older audience, despite the fact that it should really do quite well with younger players. It’s a little darker in places and contains swearing which seems out-of-place in the game. It’s a shame as the story itself is the best part of the game, albeit with the bad voice acting and stuttering animation in place.
I really wanted to like Troll and I, it’s a good idea and I liked the story, but there are just too many technical issues in the way and the gameplay isn’t engrossing enough to see it past these.