Assault Android Cactus Review

Assault Android Cactus+ Review

Blasting onto the Switch with style.

Assault Android Cactus Review
Release Date
March 8, 2019
Witch Beam
PC, Xbox, PS4, Switch
Reviewed on:

I have played a lot of Assault Android Cactus over the past couple of years. A lot. What is perhaps most interesting about that statement is that as of writing this review, I have invested that time across three distinct platforms, each improving on the game in a significant way. I loved Assault Android Cactus when it first hit Steam in 2015. I then loved it even more when it released later on Xbox One, allowing me to play the game in beautiful 4k, something my PC at the time was not capable of. And now, today, the game is officially available for the Switch. What a wonderful day it is.

Assault Android Cactus+ on Switch in many ways, is the game’s definitive edition. The game’s developer, Witch Beam, has made considerable effort to improve their game for the Switch’s unique platform capabilities. Docked or undocked, the game plays meticulously. The action flows at 60 frames per second, and the controls are as tight as ever. The bullet-hell action looks incredible, and watching the levels morph beneath your feet never gets old.  Everything that made the original release of Assault Android Cactus so good are still present, and the Switch edition features a new campaign+ mode that remixes the game’s stages for extended play and engagement. These levels feature more advanced enemies from the start, and simply surviving to the end is a legitimate challenge. This addition is an absolute treat for anyone who has played before, effectively doubling the amount of content in the game.

Assault Android Cactus Review
Checkpoint has always been my favorite stage… and now it’s been remixed!

If you are new to Assault Android Cactus, there is no better time to jump in. The Switch release features all of the previously-released content, and so right from the get-go, you’ll have access to all nine unique androids. Four of the nine are available immediately, and the rest are unlocked at key points throughout the campaign. Don’t worry, you won’t have to wait long before you start unlocking characters. They are unlocked early and often, giving you refreshing new ways to engage in the game’s combat. Each character has unique primary and secondary weapons, and must be played to their strengths for maximum effectiveness. There will be times when you’ll want Lemon’s area-of-effect capabilities, and others when you’ll cherish Coral’s force field. One of the game’s strengths is in how fundamentally unique each android is, which improves on the game’s replayability.

Assault Android Cactus Review
The action is fast and furious.

This is usually the point of a review where I start to highlight some negatives about the game… but with Assault Android Cactus+, that is difficult to do. This Switch release is the culmination of years of incremental improvements, all coming together in a fantastically-optimized product. The game has been patched, improved, balanced, and expanded upon in a way that is genuinely rare in this industry. Witch Beam should be proud of their efforts in ongoing support, for it has made this release feel like one of the most polished games I’ve ever played. From the frame rate to the controls, everything is spot on.

Assault Android Cactus GIF
Watching levels shift and morph can be mesmerizing.

Assault Android Cactus+ is simply a wonderful game. Played alone or with friends, you will have a blast in this twin-stick shooter that does so much right. Every element of the game is masterfully designed, from the minimalist UI (you could get all the information you need just by looking at your character) to the stage-changing theatrics. Every boss encounter is both challenging and interesting, and it’s all capped off with one of the best boss fights in recent memory. Assault Android Cactus+ is a must-own for Switch owners everywhere.

Assault Android Cactus Review
Review Summary
Assault Android Cactus+ on Switch is the culmination of years of careful refinement on what was already a great game. It takes the best of shmup mechanics and infuses them with well-crafted androids that make each time you play feel unique and rewarding. It is simply a fantastic game.
The Good
Masterfully designed UI.
Fun, engaging combat with shapeshifting stages.
Excellent boss fights.
Each playable android is unique and engaging.
The Bad

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