Platform: Nintendo Switch
Also on: PS4, PS5, PC
Publisher: Annapurna Interactive
Developer: Heart Machine
If you were to ask me what the story in Solar Ash is, I really wouldn’t even be able to begin to tell you. There’s something to do with space and some monster (maybe?) that eats planets, and you have to stop it. I think. And, to be totally honest, the fact I even remembered that much was because I happened to see something that vaguely reminded me of that part of the plot while I was writing this sentence. Beyond that, I’m clueless.
Yet I would recommend Solar Ash without hesitation for one simple reason: your character’s movement feels incredible.
See, while I may not remember the game’s plot, I very much remember how it feels to glide smoothly across the planet at top speed, cutting across corners sharply and launching myself into the air. Solar Ash is a game where you’re almost constantly in movement, and at no time does it ever feel like you need to slow down and stop – nor, for that matter, do you ever want to.
You can glide up steep inclines. You can double-jump across massive chasms, using a mechanic that allows you to slow time and grapple towards well-placed hooks and platforms and even enemies. You can tear through enemies with your sword, leaving a path of vanquished foes behind you as you constantly skate towards your next goal. You can just move, and move, and move, and it always feels fun.
It also helps that the world around you looks so incredible. Even on the Switch, which has started to falter a little in my mind as its performance starts to lag behind competitors, the world of Solar Ash is full of vibrant, crazy colours and weird, impossible angles. You can’t help but want to explore every inch of it – and the game makes it a breeze to do so.
Obviously, if you’re someone for whom story matters a great deal, I probably haven’t done anything to sell you on Solar Ash. But I’d still say the game is well worth it. Any game that makes movement feel this cool and effortless is a must-play, as far as I’m concerned.
Annapurna Interactive provided us with a Solar Ash Nintendo Switch code for review purposes.