A murder has taken place in the cold town of Martinaise of Revachol and a hungover police void of his memory is partnered with Lieutenant Kim Kitsuragi to solve it. However, the town does its best to extract you as law enforcement isn't looked upon fondly in these parts and the Union seems to have an unnatural influence of power. In Disco Elysium - The Final Cut, you'll use your detective intuition fuelled by in-depth RPG gameplay to solve the murder and learn more about this town - but whether you do this as a hero or a deplorable excuse for a human being is up to you.
Throughout its entirety, Disco Elysium continues to demostrate a limbo-esque world surrounded by the macabre, coupled with the main character's overwhelming sense of self-loathing. It's certainly a tone that's not going to be for everyone but you're likely here because the aesthetic has peaked your curiousity. As a fan of absurdist fiction (think Franz Kafka's Metamorphosis), Disco Elysium captures the melancholy of the surreality that is the land of Revachol. With Harry's amnesia and his self conscience slowly reminding him of his troubled life prior to the game's events, the player learns all about the world and the character they're controlling as they do, creating a highlighted sense of mystery and unnerve.
RP-lovers rejoice! Disco Elysium encourages plenty of roleplay from the player, requiring them to search every nook and cranny and exhaust an extensive variety of branching dialogue pathways. In addition, the player will often come across situations that require dice roll checks (with two six-sided dice as opposed to the standard roleplaying 20-sided dice). These checks play heavily on your point distribution on your character sheet as well as the equipment Harry has equiped at the time.
- Macabre, absurdist setting
- Flexible RPG elements
As a self-published indie title, Disco Elysium - The Final Cut is an impressive video game, especially as ZA/UM's debut title. It's a shame that, while not game-breaking, the Nintendo Switch version suffers from consistent frame rate slowdowns. Considering this game has been out on Switch since October 2021, I would have hoped that this would have been patched up by now.
With the game's isometric perspective, its art style (despite how beautiful it is) can make it difficult to see where one needs to (or can) traverse. It feels like you're controlling an early PlayStation game, much like Final Fantasy 7, where the clash of 2D and 3D textures don't do the player's sense of depth perception any favours.
- Performance issues
- Awkward movement
Final Score: 8/10
Disco Elysium - The Final Cut is certainly not for everyone. However, if you're a fan of absurdist fiction, work union politics and in-depth RPG mechanic gameplay that provides a grand sense of player freedom, then it'll fit right at home in your Switch library. You'll need to accept the performance compromises in order to play this gem on the go but no matter how you play it, Disco Elysium expertly (and uniquely) demonstrates just how video games can heighten the sense of story immersion.
Thank you for checking out our Disco Elysium - Final Cut Switch review, thank you to ZA/UM (via Five Star Games PR) for providing the review code and thank you to our $5 and up Patreon Backers for their ongoing support:
- Andrew Caluzzi (Inca Studios / Camped Out)
- Bel Cubitt