Professor Lupo and his Horrible Pets is a great puzzler that is perfect for the Nintendo Switch.
Set aboard Lupo’s ship in space, the game begins with Lupo presenting to some of the worst people on earth, War Criminals. He is showing off the most gruesome creatures he has captured during his space travels with the intent to sell them on as weapons.
However things take a turn when his ship is attacked by a paramilitary force and all hell breaks loose. You play as one of his interns and you need to escape the ship to survive. The game is broken down into 4 chapters with over 100 puzzles to solve. The ship is controlled by some AI and they will chip in with some humour while providing you with some information about each of the creatures as you encounter them.
The objective of each puzzle is to escape the room you are in. Each room will have a number creatures and traps out to get you, there are doors and buttons that you can use that will help you navigate each area. The buttons at your disposal can be used to open and shut doors, some of which are timed, while some levels have toxic gas which is lethal to you, but also affects the creatures in different ways adding an extra layer of complexity to the levels. The different creatures have their own characteristics. Some can detect sounds and scents while others are able to lay traps, the most basic creatures just amble around aimlessly but are still not to be messed with.
Each move you make needs to be considered, as you’ll be quickly punished if you make the wrong choice. I often found myself wondering whether I’d actually complete the level, with no hint system it’s very much trial and error on some levels, more advanced players will manage to pick up collectables at the same time as escaping each room, I completed the game in around 8 hours but if you go all out for the extras you’ll possibly double the play time.
Playing on the switch version of the game is great as you can easily switch between the touchscreen and the Joy-Cons to make your moves, I preferred the touchscreen as it was a quicker way of navigating the menus. Essentially this feels a bit like a mobile game for me but I’m certainly not complaining.
The art style is great, seeing the creatures transform from cute space aliens to world destroying monsters is fantastic, while the levels also look good, despite their simplicity. Paired up with an eerie-space adventure soundtrack and excellent voice acting in the game is a great package for the Switch.
Unless you have a great desire to go back through all the levels to grab all the collectibles, there isn’t anything else to do once you complete the game. For the 8 hours it took me to get through the levels without the collectible I had a good time, it was tough but I enjoyed the difficulty and I felt the levels scaled at just the right level. If you are looking for a puzzler to take while you are travelling then this is a perfect companion.