Published on June 9th, 2020 | by Ignis
REVIEW: 51 Worldwide Games
Concept: I’ve never really sat down before and thought about it, but a compilation of games from all around the world ranging from legendary board games like Chess, Shogi and Draughts to well known card games like Poker, Blackjack and Last Card (Most people would know it as Uno) is something I’ve actually wanted. Exposure to some games I’ve never played before like Hounds and Hares, Nine Men’s Morris and President and the huge variety of games on offer here means there really is something here for everyone with an expansive set of games that can appeal to pretty much anyone, plus it’s great for parties.
Graphics: The presentation on offer here is clean, most games among the 51 are static a lot of the time only needing to display a board or a range of cards to the player, graphical fidelity isn’t much of a factor here. Cards, tiles and board pieces look crisp and are clear to see, boards are neat with a top down perspective that gives a good perspective on whatever game you’re playing. Nintendo has done a great job of bringing it all together.
When going to play any sort of game there’s a little video that will play at the start and will give a brief introduction into the game and to how it will play with various humanoid game board pieces giving back and forth banter and giving a very general overview of the game. The presentations are pretty hit or miss, sometimes they do a really good job of explaining simple games and other times they focus so hard on trying to one up each other that they don’t really explain much at all and you’re left staring confused at the video playing and needing to read the extensive “how to play” that each game offers.
Gameplay: With so many games and so many varied styles of gameplay it’s hard to quantify how it works as a package though I will say that nearly all of the games controls are simple to pick up and understand and work exactly how they should – even people who aren’t familiar with video games should be able to pick it up and play it with little effort which is excellent as this allows 51 Worldwide Games to function as a superb party game
Many of the games on offer here only utilise 1 button to pick up and move pieces and utilise the left directional stick which is very simple for people to pick up and use and even some of the more complex ones, the game will very clearly showcase which button on the controller does what which is nice for those who may not be too familiar, and allows people who are competent to pick up and play quickly. This is something that is quite vital for a game collection like this, where the name of the game is not to play a particular game over and over but to dip your toes among the many games on offer here which requires them to be more or less pick up and play, or to be games that people would know the rules of before starting – both of which are done well here.
The one gripe that I had is that the motion controls can be a bit… Off at times. Not sure whether that’s just my switch or the game given how little I use the motion controls of my Joycons in most games, playing games like Darts and Bowling I had some issues with aiming but otherwise everything worked as well as it could.
All games on offer here can be played either single player vs CPU’s that range from Normal to Impossible (4 difficulty modes in total) and a many of them can be played on a local console with up to 2 – 4 players. There is a pretty sizable amount of games that cannot be played local and will require multiple Switches, some of these make sense (Most card games for example require multiple switches because being able to view the hand in a game like Last Card, President or Riichi Mahjong would take most of the challenge out of the game) and some of them have really cool applications via ‘Mosaic’ mode like Slot Cars or Fishing that allow you to put multiple switch screens together to effectively create one big screen, allowing you a lot of freedom in terms of creating tracks, or making unique rivers to fish in every time.
So unfortunately, you’re not going to be able to bring your switch to a friends place and have access to every game on the system, they’re going to need to have a copy as well or will need to download the Guest Pass via the Nintendo eShop but regardless, will require multiple systems even if you have 4+ controllers.
Sound: Not a lot to say on this one, cards sound like cards when they’re being played, board pieces sound like board pieces and there are soft jingles that play in the background while you’re in any game, it’s not loud enough that it’s ever obnoxious and is soft enough that it functions as great background music. The voiced lines are fine with the kids being energetic and the adults giving a good amount of enthusiasm and are emotive when they speak. Sound design is important in any video game, and while this is fairly easy to do well, it is thankfully done well which adds to the overall package.
Awesomeness: By far the biggest selling point of this game is the sheer number of games on offer here, it really does have something for everyone and there are a huge number that everyone will know and I can nearly guarantee you that you’ll find a game or two on here that you’ve never played before and there may even be a game that you end up falling in love with. I myself had never heard of nor played Nine Men’s Morris before, a game that was played in Ancient Rome but having played it a few times it quickly became one of my favourites in the collection and there are such a variety of games here that can all be played with people as well.
Final Words: It really is a great collection on offer here, you’d think that given the 51 games on offer you’d expect them to all be cheap games you’d play for a few minutes but that’s definitely not the case here. Fan favourites everyone would love at an affordable price, great for parties with online multiplayer to boot.
Out of 5 Bugs!