Runner3 Nintendo Switch Review

Runner3 is an entrancing and demanding title but the repetitive structures force players to repeat the same stages.

By Grayshadow, Posted 21 May 2018

Runner3 draws you in with its colorful graphics and goofy voice-acting but beyond the surface, there's a challenging game that requires absolute dedication. The elaborate musical tracks complement the gameplay as you collect the mountain of collectibles and complete each of the 40 stages. Runner3 is an entrancing and demanding title but the repetitive structures force players to repeat the same stages.

Runner3,NoobFeed,Choice Provisions,

Runner3's story is forgettable with CommanderVideo and friends in pursuit of the Timbletot. The story may lack substance but makes up for it in stylized writing, inventive cutscenes, and comedic voice-acting. The story was more about putting a smile on your face than making sense.

Runner3 doesn't provide complete control of your character. Instead, the avatar moves at a constant rate while you input commands to avoid obstacles. The game starts off simple, providing basic mechanics throughout such as jumping and kicking before introducing more advanced mechanics such as fast-falling, double-jumping, and perspective changing vehicles. Over time these mechanics are introduced in a series of complicated and challenging platforming levels.

Runner3 isn't an easy game and gives a razer-line margin for error. One mess up and you're sent back to the start, or mid-point checkpoint, and lose everything you've collected. With 40 stages and 30 retro stages, Runner3's biggest issue is the pacing.

Runner3,NoobFeed,Choice Provisions,

Stages in Runner3 are long and since the game requires near-perfection this can lead to a lot of frustration. The distance between checkpoints is exactly at the mid-point but a 3-part checkpoint system would've greatly reduced the vexation of having to repeat an entire stage for 1 mistake. Since the game links together situations that require perfect timing it won't be uncommon to fail at a basic jump because your timing for the previous obstacle was off. In addition, the game tracks how many times you've repeated a stage which is bewildering as that number, especially when it's high, can cause gamers to simply quit instead of motivated them to keep trying.

The stages in Runner3 are incredibly designed, with a lot of details placed in the background and foreground. Each stage is modeled over a specific theme and running through them for the first time is exciting, but this sense of wonder quickly fades. Stages quickly become repetitive due to how many times players will have to repeat stages to obtain everything.

The first time you play a stage you are confined to the gold bar path that contains 100 gold bars. Once all are collected you can now play through the gem path which is more difficult and earns you gems for shopping. In addition, hidden collectibles within stages are only unlocked after completing the gold bar and gem path. And when you're finished with all that you can return again for Hero Quests.

Runner3,NoobFeed,Choice Provisions,

Hero Quests are meant to unlock the remaining 9 characters. To do this you must encounter the NPC in a specific level, obtain the collectibles asked by the NPC which only appear when the quest is active, head back to the stage that the NPC is in, and collect your reward. If this sounds tedious and stretched out it's because it is. Instead of having to run back to an NPC in a specific stage providing an option to turn in the quest from the menu would've been a much more ideal choice.

Runner3's hidden secrets are the best part of the game. The optional characters all have unique dance animations and the Retro levels, which are unlocked after finding a VHS tape, play like a traditional platformer where the players are given absolute control over CommanderVideo.

Runner3 looks great and run well in both handheld or docked mode. But the foreground can get in the way, making it impossible to see what is in front of you. The stages are designed to be completed in a specific way but during early runs, you can find yourself failing because you couldn't see in front of you.

Runner3,NoobFeed,Choice Provisions,

Runner3 is a delightfully funny and challenging game. The comedic cutscenes, whimsical musical score, and colorful stages provide hours of content, especially for the completionist. Playing the same level over and over again does wear thin but once you get into the rhythmic gameplay it'll be hard to stop. 

Adam Siddiqui, NoobFeed
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General Information

Runner3

85/100

Platform(s):
Publisher(s): Choice Provisions, Nicalis
Developer(s): Choice Provisions
Genres: Rhythm, Dancing
Themes: Dancing
Release Date: 2018-05-22

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