Released in 2019 exclusively for Apple Arcade, The Pinball Wizard is now coming to both PC and Nintendo Switch in a version that allows us to play with controllers and sit comfortably on our sofas. But is it worth revisiting this little mobile title? Find out in our The Pinball Wizard review.
The story is simple and immediate, a great evil has overtaken the tower atop the Mountain of Shadow and us little apprentice wizards have to go and fight our way to the top in order to make the good guys triumph once again. This is accomplished by pinballing our wizard straight into enemies, getting the key to the floor and going on to the next. Complete twenty floors, defeat the final boss, and the game is over.
If you’re asking yourself if that’s all there is to The Pinball Wizard… then yes. Despite being now three years since its original release, it does not seem that Frosty Pop Games has added anything new for this PC/Switch release. This is not necessarily a bad thing, obviously, as the core of the game is solid and the RPG aspect does add in some fun mechanics.
Basically, the more we survive and kill enemies, the more XP points we’ll get which we can use to unlock new abilities. This can be a dash attack, a shield or just reducing the damage we get when our ball/wizard falls in between the paddles. Abilities can be further upgraded by using experience points.
But, the main problem with The Pinball Wizard is that there is not much variety. There is only one single tileset (which, compared even to older pinball games from the 90s, is really not enough), a couple of music tracks that repeat ad nauseam and just four different types of enemies. As mentioned, while the gameplay is solid, there are so many times we can kill the same enemies over and over until boredom sets in.
There are a couple of added gameplay modes to spice in a little variety, like the “dungeon of the day”, which is just a random daily level for the player to try. Once the final boss has been defeated, also, we can go back and try whatever level we like in order to unlock all the other powerups, should we not have done so already. Graphically, the Pinball Wizard is fine, of the cutesy variety and does its job even though, as mentioned, it definitely lacks variety.
Overall, while there is nothing terribly wrong with The Pinball Wizard, probably only hardcore pinball players would find the title is worth playing beyond a couple of hours. Hopefully, Frosty Pop can see to add some much-needed content in the future, but for the moment, we can safely say The Pinball Wizard is an okay addition to your Switch library, good for that short pinball fix.
Our The Pinball Wizard review was made possible with a review key provided by the publisher. The Pinball Wizard is available on the eShop and on Steam.
The Pinball Wizard: The Pinball Wizard is an okay addition to anyone's Switch library but, lacking variety and additional gameplay modes, it is not going to hold up anyone's attention for long. – Damiano