Fashion Police Squad - Switch Review
"Enough to warrant at least one playthrough."
Calling all officers, we have a fashion emergency! It's time to dress and impress, and pull out the big guns! We have a fashion crime in progress! Grab your tailor-gun and belt of justice and hit the streets in Fashion Police Squad. Use your wits and style to turn fashion crimes upside down, making the unfashionable, fashionable and fabulous.
Fashion Police Squad starts off with a brief intro which sets the scene for what's to come; Trenopolis is under assault from unfashionable undesirables, such as men in grey suits, saggy pants, oversized jackets and paparazzi sporting socks with sandals…bleh. All these fashion victims need a helping hand and there’s only one man who can sort them out, Sergeant Des from the Fashion Police Squad, that’s who!
You’ll walk down a series of streets, alleyways on a fairly linear path looking for fashion victims. See, the unique aspect in Fashion Police Squad is you're not actually killing anyone but instead, shooting at an enemy with one of your seven weapons, turning their drab get-up into something more fashionable. Each new enemy can only be damaged with a certain type of weapon; For example, Tiny Suits who dart around you dropping C4; these chaps can only be damaged with the tailormade gun (any other weapons will have no effect). Once their health bar drops to zero, they’ll turn into a non-threatening target and a more fashionable member of the public. In these battle arenas, turning all enemies into fashion icons is the order of the day and is what you’ll be doing for most of your playtime, these moments are really good fun.
With each new enemy revealed, you’ll normally get given a small hint into which weapon would be more effective for that current target. It's such a novel idea that makes shooting really enjoyable; the controls, for the most part, are very fluid. It's a pretty hilarious concept for a shooter, one that works very well here.
Each mission will have a clear objective in the stage but there are side objectives, such as finding all of the fashion crimes in a stage, finding all the swag hidden in crates and discovering all the secret art that is normally hidden in hard reach areas, giving you an incentive to replay stages to reach 100% completion. There’s also some extra challenge stages that will become available as you progress.
Something that got me through the campaign was all of the hilarious fashion puns, with jokes such as a take on Hugo boss, and some of the more ridiculous fashion trends that are still being worn to this day like the dreaded socks with sandals, tiny suits, or the popular 90’s trend of sagging pants among other hideous trends. Plus, there are a lot of little nods in the latter half of the game to past influences, such as: DOOM, Metal Gear and Wolfenstein which came right out of the blue.
And finally, props have to be given to the graphics and music. The art style was quite unique as the world around you is in 3D, but Des and all your enemies are 2D sprites, making for a very unique looking indie game. I really enjoyed some of the music and especially the funny fashion makeover voice sound effects and punchy weapon fire.
- Unique shooting mechanics
- Side objectives
- Lots of fashion puns
- Great art and music
The weapon wheel is supposed to allow you to swap quickly through your weapons. However in Fashion Police Squad, it’s really sluggish to cycle through. Sometimes, the cursor skips to a different weapon in the heat of battle, which can result in me taking damage or dying as a result of me not having the correct weapon in hand. Remember, each enemy can only be transformed by shooting them with a specific weapon; anything else wouldn't cause any damage, which made this issue more prevalent on harder difficulties.
Swing sections allow you to use your belt Spider Man style to swing from pole-to-pole; this sounds good in practice but it became a really annoying mechanic in the later stages. The cursor shows you where your whip can latch onto. Unfortunately, it is so small that it often blends into the background. I had a hard time seeing it and one miss results in you falling. It’s not a problem in the early stages, but just wait until you get to the Cruise Ship stage. I nearly quit the game as the whole as this section requires you to swing constantly and it was so annoying to consistently miss, lose all your health from each fall and have to restart all the way back at the beginning, all because I couldn't see the tiny cursor.
The last issue with the game was how linear it is. There was always a clear way to get to a marked location, with only minor routes around that were hiding collectibles off the beaten path. I really wanted to explore the city of Trenopolis but sadly, the path was fixed with very little deviation.
- Weapon wheel is very sluggish
- The Swing mechanic is infuriating
- Overly linear
Final Score: 7/10
I enjoyed Fashion Police Squad and its unique take on the FPS genre. It does enough to warrant at least one playthrough, but the swinging sections in the later stages were incredibly frustrating and the short run time left me wanting more. Perhaps if the developer was to ever make a sequel with a more meaty campaign, maybe even thrown in a multiplayer aspect to extend the longevity, it’d fare better. But as it stands, Fashion Police Squad is a solid game that just needs tightening up a bit.
Thank you for checking out our Fashion Police Squad Switch review, thank you to No More Robots (via Evolve PR) for providing the review code and thank you to our Patreon Backers for their ongoing support:
- Andrew Caluzzi (Inca Studios / Camped Out)
- Bel Cubitt
- Jack Caven
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